BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) — The Buffalo Bills have given themselves room to maneuver while continuing what's become a weeklong shuffle of their quarterback-depleted roster.

In releasing five players — including newly acquired quarterback Thaddeus Lewis — on Saturday, the Bills are three spots short of their 53-player roster limit entering the first week of the season. That opens the likelihood of Buffalo spending time scouring the waiver wire to add players to address its most pressing needs at quarterback and cornerback.

The Bills also released veteran linebacker Bryan Scott and defensive linemen Torrell Troup, Jamie Blatnick and Izaan Cross.

Lewis became the latest quarterback on the way out in Buffalo, a day after the team cut Matt Leinart and placed veteran Kevin Kolb on injured reserve because of a concussion. Lewis had spent less than a week in Buffalo, after being acquired in a trade that sent reserve linebacker Chris White to Detroit.

Lewis went seven of 16 for 132 yards passing, including a 79-yard touchdown to Marcus Easley in taking over for Leinart in the second quarter of a 35-13 preseason finale loss to Detroit on Thursday. He also had a Bills-leading 51 yards rushing.

Without Lewis, the Bills are left with two quarterbacks — rookie first-round pick EJ Manuel and undrafted rookie Jeff Tuel— on their roster in preparing to open the season against New England. Manuel has missed two weeks after hurting his left knee, and it's unclear if he'll be ready to play next weekend.

Tuel is penciled in to start against the Patriots if Manuel is not ready.

Buffalo is also short on depth at cornerback with starter Stephon Gilmore to miss the first five to seven weeks with a broken wrist.

The Bills have been off since Thursday's game, and return to practice Sunday afternoon.

Scott is a 10-year veteran, who spent the past six seasons playing several roles in Buffalo. The Bills were forced to cut Scott after they failed in a bid to trade him over the past two days.

"I'm still all smiles," Scott told The Associated Press by phone shortly after he was released. "I'm so thankful to the organization for the opportunity."

The move didn't entirely catch him by surprise, even though the Bills had re-signed Scott to a one-year contract before the start of free agency in March.

"My only regret is we didn't get over that hump and get to the team to playoffs," said Scott, referring to Buffalo's postseason drought which now stands at 13 seasons. "But I'm very much in their corner."

Scott, who can also play safety and special teams roles, intends to attempt to continue playing.

"I know I still have a lot of gas in the tank, and still want to play," he said.

Troup was Buffalo's second-round pick in the 2010 draft. After appearing in 15 games, including three starts as a rookie, he played only six more in 2011 and then missed all of last season after having back surgery.

Troup was finally healthy entering training camp this season, but was unable to crack a defensive front that's been improved by the offseason addition of veteran free-agent Alan Branch.


AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org