ASU alum Alex Carrington doesn't look lost in space at LB

BUFFALO ( - Defensive end Alex Carrington says it's been a while since he's lined up in space but it certainly didn't seem that way during the first snap of 11-on-11 drills Monday.

The 6-foot-5, 304-pound Carrington lined up at outside linebacker and easily blew by left tackle Ed Wang as if he had played the position all along. It won't be the last time Carrington plays outside -- or inside -- linebacker, either.

At first Carrington appeared to replace outside linebacker Chris Kelsay -- who sat out Monday's practice with an injury -- but the plan is to play defensive ends Spencer Johnson and Dwan Edwards at linebacker as well.

"Whether Kelsay is injured or not, or whether it's [Shawn] Merriman or Danny Batten or anybody we have is injured or not, we have to know the position," Carrington said. "That's why they're sticking us in there now."

Players the size of Carrington generally don't play linebacker, but as the Bills attempt to improve their defense they are seeking ways to exploit matchups.

"It's definitely a different world out there but I've taken to the role," Carrington said. "There are times when you're over a tight end and it's a little better matchup with a 300 pounder vs. a 260 or 270 tight end to get in there and stuff the run."

In the Bills' nickel front, Carrington, who gained 20 pounds during the offseason, was out wide.

"It kind of takes me back to A. State when we lined up out there," said Carrington, who played at Arkansas State. "I have to dust the rust off a little bit because it's been a while since I've been that wide. You have a little more space out there and a little more time to react and you have to adjust differently."