Bills Notebook: Hardy's rehab coming along

James Hardy (Getty Images)

Some news and notes as Buffalo hits the weights...

--Wide receiver James Hardy, coming off reconstructive ACL surgery that ended his rookie season, is optimistic he'll play and contribute in 2009. He said doctors feel he could be ready to practice a couple of weeks into summer training camp and possibly play in the final preseason game. "The rehab is coming along very well," Hardy said. "The doctor said I'm far ahead of schedule, so I started to run in the pool, front and backwards. It's coming all very well."

--New Bills center Geoff Hangartner, taking part in the team's offseason conditioning program, has started the process of learning new names and faces. None are more important to his job than quarterback Trent Edwards.

"I would say at some point we'll watch some film together and just go over how he sees a defense and how I see a defense and things like that," Hangartner said. "That'll probably happen fairly quickly within the next couple of weeks. We'll start watching film together. And maybe go play some golf together. I heard he's a pretty good golfer. To have a good football relationship you have to have a pretty good friendship, so we'll build towards that in the next couple of weeks."

Someone needs to tell Hangartner, who has been living in Charlotte, nobody's golfing in Buffalo yet.

--Coach Dick Jauron, speaking at NFL owners meetings in Dana Point, Calif., said he called an old Yale buddy to help in the decision to sign WR Terrell Owens. That friend was Calvin Hill, the former Yale and Dallas running back who does consulting on Cowboys' player development issues.

"I have a great deal of respect for him as a person and as a football person, and it was obviously positive (about Owens)," Jauron said. "He told me a lot of things he felt and a lot of those things are private between us, but he told me (Owens is) the hardest worker he's ever seen. He wants to win and has a driving desire to win."

--Rogers Communications, which negotiated a five-year deal to bring a series of eight Bills games to Toronto, would like to increase the deal to two regular-season games through 2012. This is especially true if the NFL increases its schedule to 18 games. The Rogers group is polling its fans to gauge interest in more NFL football in Toronto.

Two Buffalo games at the Rogers Centre last year were met with lukewarm enthusiasm. Moving more games to Toronto would no doubt create more anxiety amongst Bills fans in Western New York, many convinced that the team will eventually relocate permanently.

The team issued this statement: "We are aware that there is interest in expanding the Bills in Toronto Series by an additional regular-season game in the future. We're also aware that our hosts have conducted a survey as part of their internal process of evaluating whether to propose an expansion of the series. We have an agreement to play one regular-season game for the next four seasons. We have no agreement, nor has there ever been one, to play an additional regular-season game in Toronto. Any such future agreement would require consultation and the approvals of Erie County, Empire State Development Corporation and the NFL owners."

--There are reports the Bills had 10,000 renewals of season tickets within two days of the signing of free agent WR Terrell Owens. His $6.5 million salary is looking like a bargain.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "I'm pretty angry about it, really (jokingly). I figured all along that I'd be a big name free agent signing. That's kind of my deal. I don't care. That's fine. I can see why we've been overshadowed. He's obviously earned the right to be the lead dog and that's fine with me." -- Free agent C Geoff Hangartner on being overshadowed by the signing of Terrell Owens.

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