No resolution on Fina, Centers?

The biggest mystery surrounding the Bills in this mini-camp is whether John Fina or Larry Centers will be part of the team when the season begins.

Both are veteran, relatively higher-paid players who could be expendable both to save salary-cap room and because it's possible neither would be particularly important to Buffalo's 2002 offensive plans.

We probably won't be able to solve the mystery until after June 1, for it's likely neither player will be at the current mini-camp Monday, when most of the 24 veterans who weren't asked to report until then will arrive in Orchard Park.

Gregg Williams left the door open to Fina and Centers to stay home when the coach said, "The four guys with 10 years or more can choose not to come in till June." Even then, Fina and Centers might not be at the June mini-camp, if the Bills choose to release them after June 1 to save salary-cap space.

That group also includes free-agent pickups Dave Moore and Eddie Robinson, but Fina and Centers are the players whose futures are in doubt. Giving them a built in excuse? "How convenient!" as The Church Lady would say.

Though all of the mini-camps are voluntary under this year's NFL rules, Williams said he expected "all the less-than-10-year guys" to be present. "It's a voluntary organized team activity, but it's amazing how many show up."

One returning veteran who won't take place in drills next Monday through Thursday is nose tackle Pat Williams. He is recovering from off-season surgery on both ankles.

Joining him on the sidelines will be wide receiver Jeremy McDaniel, who hasn't practiced since the second day of the April mini-camp. "We'll hold McDaniel out quite a while while his groin heals," Gregg Williams said. However, fellow wideout Reggie Germany, who sat out Friday after spraining a knee on the first day of the mini-camp for rookies and young veterans, could return to drills Monday.

Their inactivity limited the number of players actually practicing to 56 of those on the current 88-man roster. The only player who was present Thursday and missing Friday was first-round draft pick Mike Williams, who was excused because he was one of the rookies the league selected to attend an NFL film premier in Los Angeles. The coach said his namesake would be back in practice Monday.

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