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Buffalo Bills News - August 6, 2003

Marker Depth Chart [8:19 PM] reports: 'Ryan Denney...Sam Adams...Pat Williams...Aaron Schobel.'

Marker It's a Special Skill [8:17 PM] reports: '"He's not a lineman. If he gets in a game as a lineman we're in trouble," jokes special teams coach Danny Smith. "He's here as a long snapper and only a long snapper."'

Marker Oldest ex-NFLer celebrating 100th birthday in style [4:50 PM]
AP reports: '''You've made my day. You've made my years,'' Dana said to Bills coach Gregg Williams.'

Marker Training Camp 8/6, a view from the end zone [2:40 PM]
The Stadium Wall reports: 'Brown has got to be feeling like he is on a ledge. Too many mistakes. One play was a perfect handoff to Burns, who turned and pitched it back to Brown, who totally missed a wide open Coleman.'

Marker Bills Alumni Spotlight: Harry Jacobs [9:35 AM] reports: '"Sports Illustrated wrote articles that wasn’t who was going to win the game, it was just how bad the Chargers were going to beat us. Even after we beat them in ‘64. They were the most prolific scoring offense in all of pro football at that point in time, and then, of course, we shut them down and held them to no score. What was fun about it was (defensive coordinator) Joe Collier had his defense and I took two of the defenses and put them together as a thought process for one defense. I used that defense on most of the third downs and that shut them down. (San Diego’s) Lance Alworth was really a great football player, a great wide receiver and did some great things. We didn’t shut him down that day, but we sure shut him off."'

Marker Wright climbs out from shadow of struggles on and off the field [8:57 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'In July 2002, Wright was arrested in Fresno, Calif., after fleeing the scene of an auto accident in which he was involved. In January he pleaded guilty to leaving the scene of the collision that left two people injured. Under the plea deal, Wright faces no penalty if he stays out of legal trouble for a year.'

Marker Training camp billboard [8:56 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Practice runs from 8:25 to 10:30 a.m. today and 8:25 to 10:15 a.m. Thursday. There is no practice Friday.'

Marker Denney's learning curve [5:15 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: '“ If the scrimmage was an idea of what he can do for us, it’s great,” Gray said. “ He’s strong enough to keep those 330-pound tackles off him and he has relentless pursuit. He never quits.”'

Marker Oldest NFLer lives it up at age 99 [5:14 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: '“ I enjoy watching the Bills on television on Sunday afternoons during the football season,” he said. “ I really get into the games. I’d love to see them bring home a championship for Buffalo one of these days.”'

Marker Lightning empties bleachers [5:13 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'An estimated 3,000 to 3,500 fans filed out of the bleachers and off the surrounding hillside and back to the buses, which took them to the shuttle lots.'

Marker Shaw Fitting In [5:12 AM] reports: '"Bobby Shaw is going to be a very good player for us this year," Bledsoe explained. "He has a very good feel for this offense, and where he needs to be and when he needs to be there."'

Marker Rain and Tony Driver's demotion highlight Tuesday [5:11 AM]
Bills Report reports: 'Tony Driver, who entered camp as the team's backup strong safety is now the team's third string free safety. Ahead of him on the depth chart are Pierson Prioleau and Izell Reese. Replacing Driver at backup strong safety is Ainsley Battles.'

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August 5, 2003

Marker Better D might allow Bills to slow tempo on O [11:31 PM]
CBS Sportsline reports: "When you have a guy of Sam Adams' caliber who is 340 (pounds), a Pro Bowl player, he's been on Super Bowl defenses, you know the offense has to respect him," said Fletcher. "They're not going to be able to single-block him. They're not going to be able to single-block Pat. They're not going to be able to single-block myself or Takeo. They're going to have to pick their poison."

Marker Williams and Adams Present Beefy Bills Defensive Front [8:27 PM]
AP reports: 'Pat Williams feels rejuvenated now that he has Sam Adams as a teammate on the Buffalo Bills. Adams is happy, too, finally getting a chance to play under highly respected defensive line coach Tim Krumrie.'

Marker NFL's Oldest Living Alum Visits Bills Practice [8:19 PM] reports: 'Afterwards, Dana was presented a game ball and a personalized Bills jersey, displaying the number 100, from head coach Gregg Williams and the team's 2002 captains - quarterback Drew Bledsoe, linebacker London Fletcher and running back Sammy Morris.'

Marker Bills’ Burns bidding at packed position [1:15 PM]
Olean Times Herald reports: '“Joe is one of the toughest guys on this football team,” he enthused. “He’s in competition at a very deep position, but don’t count him out, because he’s a tough dude and the locker room loves him."'

Marker Bills looking for more balance on offense [11:47 AM]
ESPN reports: It's not hard to miss just how easy it is to dismiss Josh Reed, the second-year wide receiver, and a short guy who will play a big role in determining the success of the offense. A former second-round pick and the Bills' No. 3 wideout in 2002, Reed has to fill big shoes, but seems more capable, at least from a physical dimension, of fitting into a pair of ballet slippers, rather than the clodhoppers the departed Peerless Price left behind.

Marker Big hits, plays expected from upgraded defense [11:47 AM]
ESPN reports: Since the Bills play in the AFC East, arguably the most evenly contested of the league's eight divisions, there is no guarantee that 2003 will bring a welcome end to a three-year playoff slump. What seems certain, though, is that the Bills will bring the wood. And will bring it with a front seven that is not only stouter, but also quicker to the ball, than those units the franchise has recently fielded.

Marker Monday Night Training Camp Report [10:06 AM]
The Stadium Wall reports: 'The defense completely dominated the offense in the 11 on 11 drills. It came to the point where Bledsoe seemed to pull his offense aside and cuss them out for their poor performance.'

Marker Buffalo return puts a smile on Gash's smash-mouth [9:00 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"If you went into the dictionary looking for old-school football, you'd find Sam Gash's picture," Bledsoe said. "He brings an attitude, an aggressiveness, a physical style of football that can be infectious through your whole team. It's always fun when your on the field with Sam. When he runs through the line of scrimmage and runs into a linebacker, you don't have to see the impact; you can hear it."'

Marker Training camp billboard [8:59 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'The Bills invited Sam Dana, the NFL's oldest living player, to today's practice. The Kenmore resident will celebrate his 100th birthday on Thursday. Dana played for the NFL's New York Yankees in 1928 after playing for Canisius College and Columbia University. At Columbia, he was football teammate of baseball Hall of Famer Lou Gehrig.'

Marker Johnson's woes proves Bills wuz robbed [8:58 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Johnson might be the nicest guy in the world, as many local charities will assert, but the five-year, $25 million deal he got from the Bills ranks among the great heists in NFL history.'

Marker Bills move around the X Factor [5:21 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: '“ Jeff Posey, to be quite honest, is better than I thought he was,” coach Gregg Williams said. “ Takeo and London (Fletcher) are getting a lot of the publicity right now, but if you were picking up sides in the backyard, you’d pick him, too. He’s quiet and does his work, and I like those kinds of guys.”'

Marker Tackle Mike Williams returns to practice after injury [5:20 AM]
AP reports: 'Leg injuries can devastate players carrying 370 pounds. But Williams' current injury isn't related to the leg ailments that kept him out of two games as a rookie. Buffalo's first-round draft pick in 2002 started the other 14 games.'

Marker Bills Defense Holds Upper Hand In Night Practice [5:19 AM] reports: '"The defense got the upper hand," said head coach Gregg Williams. "It was obvious. It was good in one respect but the offensive has to bounce back."'

August 4, 2003

Marker Bills report: Strategy and personnel [11:15 PM]
CBS Sportsline reports: The Bills' quest for a starting left DE is still high on the team's agenda. But on passing downs, at least, the team appears to have found a solution.

Free agent strong-side LB Jeff Posey, who played DE in college, is lining up at left DE on pass rush plays. On 1st and 2nd down, he's at his normal right outside spot. Or he could wind up in the middle. The idea is to move the versatile 6-4, 250 pounder around and keep OC's up nights.

Marker Bills report: Inside slant [11:12 PM]
CBS Sportsline reports: Van Pelt isn't expected to play at all against the Ravens, with Bledsoe playing one quarter, Brown for two, and free agent rookie Jason Johnson finishing up.

Marker Bills report: Notes, quotes, anecdotes [11:09 PM]
CBS Sportsline reports: Linebacker Takeo Spikes is spreading the gospel of coach Dick LeBeau's zone blitzes. LeBeau is the creator of the scheme noted for disguising where pressure on the quarterback is coming from, utilizing such techniques as defensive ends dropping into coverage.

"When it's working right, you'll see defensive linemen getting interceptions," said Spikes, who played for LeBeau in Cincinnati. "Crazy things, stuff you don't think will happen. The key is having athletic guys, not just straight-forward guys who fit the stereotype of a nose guard or an end. We have guys who can move (here)."

Marker Learning from Experience [11:05 PM] reports: Four ex-NFL standouts with a combined 42 seasons NFL experience – Cedrick Hardman, Pete Metzelaars, Reggie Brooks and Ray Roberts – are working with the Colts as assistant coaches during training camp.
Metzelaars began his career with the Seattle Seahawks in 1982, but it was as a member of the Buffalo Bills that he made his biggest NFL impact. He played with the Bills from 1985-1994, playing on all four Buffalo Super Bowl teams from 1990-1993. He is working with the Colts’ tight ends during training camp.

Marker Monday Night Practice Report [9:30 PM]
The Stadium Wall reports: 'Josh [Reed] slipped awkwardly trying to catch one of many horribly thrown Travis Brown balls. It looked like his knee twisted. I bit my lip and winced. He got right up and literally sprinted back to the huddle. A loud 'whew' was heard. It was me...'

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09/13 Indianapolis Colts 1:00 pm
09/20 New England Patriots 1:00 pm
09/27 @ Miami Dolphins 4:25 pm
10/04 New York Giants 1:00 pm
10/11 @ Tennessee Titans 1:00 pm
10/18 Cincinnati Bengals 1:00 pm
10/25 @ Jacksonville Jaguars 9:30 am
11/08 Miami Dolphins 1:00 pm
11/12 @ New York Jets 8:25 pm
11/23 @ New England Patriots 8:30 pm
11/29 @ Kansas City Chiefs 1:00 pm
12/6 Houston Texans 1:00 pm
12/13 @ Philadelphia Eagles 1:00 pm
12/20 @ Washington Redskins 1:00 pm
12/27 Dallas Cowboys 1:00 pm
01/03 New York Jets 1:00 pm

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