The Buffalo Bills held an early edge against the Carolina Panthers, but the Panthers came back in the second half for a 28-23 victory in the preseason opener for both teams Thursday night at New Era Field.  Essentially, the Panthers back-up players were better than those of the Bills.

Nate Peterman and A J McCarron split the first half at quarterback.  Peterman got the start and finished 9 of 10 for 119 yards with a touchdown and an interception.  The touchdown was a 28-yard pass reception and run by Kelvin Benjamin.  Benjamin tip toed down the sideline into the end zone then hopped into the stands to celebrate.

McCarron threw 10 passes and completed 7 for 116 yards.

Marcus Murphy scored on a 7-yard touchdown run just before halftime to up the Bills lead to 17-7

The second half went to Josh Allen and he showed off his rocket of an arm with a couple of throws that were oh, so close.  His first throw was a 60-yarder that was caught, but out of bounds.  Then later a pass that would have gone for a 62-yard touchdown was just out of the reach of rookie Robert Foster.

Allen did manage a late 14-yard touchdown pass to Ray-Ray McCloud, but the Bills 2-point conversion attempt failed.  Allen finished 9 of 19 for 116 yards.  He also scrambled three times for 29 yards, two of them were for first downs.

Benjamin and Carolina quarterback Cam Newton made more headlines before the game when Newton approached Benjamin seeming to ask "what's up".  It didn't go well.  Benjamin tried to walk away and Newton wasn't happy.  No one heard what was actually said but it was awkward and they probably won't be sending Christmas cards to each other.

The Bills are back at St. John Fisher on Sunday at 2:15.  You do need a ticket to get in.  After that there are two more workouts on Tuesday and Wednesday at 8:45 and then they're done for another summer in Rochester.

Next game for the Bills is Friday night at Cleveland with a 7:30 kickoff.

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