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Buffalo Bills News - February 22, 2005

Marker Reports: Cowboys to sign Bledsoe [10:31 PM]
AP reports: 'The Cowboys have said all along they wanted to go with a veteran quarterback rather than turn to one of their youngsters, Drew Henson or Tony Romo.'

Marker Bledsoe-'Boys deal done, source says [10:28 PM]
Fort Worth Star Telegram reports: 'Bledsoe will likely be introduced Wednesday at the Cowboys' Valley Ranch headquarters.'

Marker Bledsoe May Have New Home Already [10:22 PM]
WGR-AM reports: 'Bledsoe should be in Dallas on Wednesday to finalize the deal and also talk with coaches.'

Marker Bledsoe to replace Testaverde as starter [8:19 PM]
ESPN reports: 'Multiple league sources confirmed Tuesday night that Bledsoe, whose release by the Buffalo Bills became official earlier Tuesday, has reached agreement in principle with the Cowboys on most of the major components of a contract. Bledsoe will fly to Dallas on Wednesday, meet with coaches and team officials, and likely finish the deal.'

Marker Drew Bledsoe - On To The Next Challenge [5:14 PM]
NFLPlayers.com reports: 'Drew Bledsoe arrived in Buffalo in 2002 and in his first season as the Bills starting quarterback proceeded to set 10 franchise records including most yards (4,359), attempts (610), completions (375) and 300-yard games (seven). He also helped Buffalo increase its win total from three in 2001 to eight in 2002. Things appeared to heading in the right direction for the team and the quarterback. But after Bledsoe struggled in 2003 and the team finished with a disappointing 6-10 record, the franchise made a 2004 NFL Draft-day trade to acquire Tulane quarterback J.P. Losman with the 22nd overall selection.'

Marker Bills Officially Release Drew Bledsoe [5:14 PM]
WGR-AM reports: 'Today was the first day that the Bills could officially release him.'

Marker NFL Europe Proves To Be Valuable [12:59 PM]
BuffaloBills.com reports: 'Buffalo hopes the professional playing experience for these five individuals will prove to be as valuable as it was for current Bills punter Brian Moorman.'

Marker Subject matter is curious for Bledsoe basher [8:51 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'But I wonder - where did this revelation about Bledsoe and the coin toss originate? Who, outside of someone in the organization, would have been privy to such knowledge? And why would it be worthy of mention unless someone was out to grind an ax?'

Marker Sizing up speed [7:15 AM]
Indianapolis Star reports: 'Colts president Bill Polian used defensive end Phil Hansen as an example of what sophisticated training techniques and hard work can achieve. Hansen weighed 267 pounds when Polian, then the Buffalo Bills' general manager, drafted him out of North Dakota State in 1991. Hansen got bigger, stronger, faster. He played 11 seasons, most of them at about 305 pounds, alongside future Hall of Fame end Bruce Smith. "We couldn't make him into Bruce Smith, but he got faster," Polian said. "You can improve a player's quickness. You can improve his speed to a certain degree, but not drastically. If you can get an incremental 3 percent, that can be the difference between being a good player and a great player."'

Marker Another Drew, another sample of Parcells' will [6:18 AM]
San Antonio Express News reports: 'Parcells will try to figure out how this athlete, who just turned 33 years old, would have Buffalo turning instead to an untested second-year player.'

Marker NFL Players, Once Fleeced, Invest in Advice, Bonds, Real Estate [6:16 AM]
Bloomberg.com reports: 'And [Troy] Vincent has ownership interests in a construction company, a spa and Eltekon Financial LLC, a financial services provider based in Austin, Texas.'

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February 21, 2005

Marker Inside slant [3:57 PM]
CBS Sportsline reports: 'Coach Gregg Williams got three years. Quarterback Drew Bledsoe got three years. See a pattern here?

Marker Strategy and personnel [3:57 PM]
CBS Sportsline reports: 'If Matthews calls it quits, there will be plenty of other options for the Bills. The market is expected to be flooded with veterans by March 2, the start of free agency. Then it becomes a matter of money and the player's willingness to mentor Losman.'

Marker Notes, quotes [3:56 PM]
CBS Sportsline reports: 'Rusty Jones, who worked 20 seasons for the Bills as strength and conditioning coordinator under six head coaches, has left the club and signed with the Chicago Bears. Jones was given a new title last year - director of physical development and assistant to the head coach - with Brad Roll assuming the strength and conditioning duties, which was Jones' love.'

Marker Time right for Buffalo to dump Drew [3:54 PM]
Niagara Falls Reporter reports: 'The deal looked brilliant for the first two months of 2002, when the Bills were the most explosive team in football. Just as important, Bledsoe's debut rekindled waning interest in the team and sold a whole lot of tickets. The next two-and-a-half years, though, left no doubt that it was time for Bledsoe to move on.'

Marker San Diego Bills Backers Welcome Bills fans in 2005! [3:51 PM]
San Diego Bills Backers Club reports: 'Welcome to San Diego! And the web site of the San Diego (Pacific Beach) Fan Club for Buffalo Bills Fans.'

Marker Win a Special Comeback Game DVD [3:48 PM]
BuffaloBills.com reports: Interested fans are asked to submit a brief essay (300 words or less) recounting their memory of the game. Were you at the game? Did you remain a loyal listener to the radio? What were you saying as the comeback began to unfold on the field.'

Marker Bills Enter Free Agency In Good Shape [5:47 AM]
WGR-AM reports: 'While the won-loss record leaves alot to be desired, Donahoe's era with the Bills has been a success when it comes to managing the cap. The Bills have significantly reduced the amount of dead cap money in recent seasons and go into the free agent/trading period in the best cap shape of the four teams in the AFC East.'

Marker Facing tough task [5:45 AM]
Akron Beacon Journal reports: 'The Patriots exposed Bledsoe's weaknesses -- a very poor touch on short passes. He has a strong arm, but not real accurate -- especially when he has to move in the pocket. It might not be fair to judge Bledsoe purely against the Patriots, but that is Crennel's background. Also, the Bills finished at 9-7 last season, but they are letting Bledsoe go in favor of rookie J.P. Losman, so the Bills must have some doubts.'

Marker Bills Team Report [5:32 AM]
The Sporting News reports: 'The team wants to keep LT Jonas Jennings and DT Pat Williams, but it might be forced to choose one or the other. Jennings, 27, is young and plays a position that usually draws big money offers. The Bills won't overpay for a player who has missed games due to injuries in each of his four seasons. But the team would be woefully thin at offensive tackle if it loses Jennings and top backup Marcus Price, another free agent.'

Marker Better without Bledsoe [5:31 AM]
CNN/SI reports: Before he walked out to midfield for the flip, Bledsoe was advised by coaches to choose to defend the east goal if Pittsburgh won the toss and elected to receive. That way, the Steelers wouldn't be wind-aided when they took the ball. Pittsburgh won the toss. Pittsburgh elected to receive. Bledsoe said Buffalo would defend the west goal.

February 20, 2005

Marker Shelton drawing interest [4:36 PM]
East Valley Tribune reports: 'Shelton is under contract to make $3 million a season through 2008, a reasonable rate for a starting left tackle. Shelton, though, was replaced at left tackle by Leonard Davis in Arizona, and Shelton and coach Dennis Green haven’t had the best relationship.'

Marker A tough drop for Bledsoe [5:03 AM]
Boston Globe reports: '"The biggest change in football in the last seven or eight years has been the defenses and what they do to you. The way they attack a quarterback is much more varied than it was 15 or 20 years ago, and that's made it tougher for the classic drop-back quarterbacks. Offensive linemen now are big, strong guys who are not as athletic as the guys we find on defense. The guys rushing the passer today are generally better athletes. They're faster and quicker and that's made it unrealistic to ask an offensive line to hold its pass protection for five seconds the way the Raiders did when Plunkett was playing."'

Marker Bledsoe's release paves way for Losman in Buffalo [5:01 AM]
Tulane Hullabaloo reports: '“As a leader in the preseason games and in practice, he had the chance to display some leadership skills that I like,” Mularkey said. “We designed some runs early in the preseason he took advantage of and made plays. He had a good pocket presence about him. He has a lot of things now that we are going to start to scratch the surface with.”'

Marker JP Losman: The Right Decision? [4:59 AM]
OTCDraft.com reports: 'I do look for the Bills to take somewhat of a step back to start off the Losman era. Hopefully the learning curve won’t be too big for JP and he will catch on quickly. He has the talent; he has to tools, now he has to put it together. I do like that when the press conference that the Bills held to announce the releasing of Drew Bledsoe, JP Losman was with Sam Wyche watching film.'

February 19, 2005

Marker Cowboys shouldn't pursue Bledsoe, but is Henson a good fit? [10:20 AM]
Dallas Morning News reports: 'And if Drew Bledsoe works out as well as did Vinny Testaverde, the next quarterback you'll hear about suiting up for Bill Parcells' Cowboys is Phil Simms.'

Marker Bledsoe makes sense for Cowboys [10:19 AM]
Dallas Morning News reports: 'This Bledsoe is not the Bledsoe Parcells coddled in New England, but if the Cowboys want to get on the carousel, he's the best choice.'

Marker Bledsoe, Brady now so different [10:18 AM]
Daytona Beach News Journal reports: 'He's 33, he hasn't had a solid, complete season in years and he's a drop-back passer, and that's gone out of style. Good thing for Bledsoe there are still coaches around, like Bill Parcells, who famously crave old-fashioned players.'

Marker Co-owner Kelly enjoying a new game [9:05 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Kelly said he will attend from 10 to 12 Busch races this year for the full-time team. Driver Randy LaJoie, a two-time Busch champion, is making his return to the series after a two-year absence under Cicci, also returning to the series after running limited events the last three seasons. Cicci teams have started 708 Busch races, winning 19.'

Marker Cards tackle Shelton visits Bills [8:57 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Shelton, 28, was given permission from the Cardinals to seek a trade earlier this month. The Bills are a possible destination because Jennings is an unrestricted free agent and is seeking a contract that would make him one of the highest paid offensive tackles in the NFL. The Bills aren't expected to meet those demands.'

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09/11 @ Baltimore Ravens 1:00 pm
09/15 New York Jets 8:25 pm
09/25 Arizona Cardinals 1:00 pm
10/02 @ New England Patriots 1:00 pm
10/09 @ Los Angeles Rams 4:25 pm
10/16 San Francisco 49ers 1:00 pm
10/23 @ Miami Dolphins 1:00 pm
10/30 New England Patriots 1:00 pm
11/07 @ Seattle Seahawks 8:30 pm
11/20 @ Cincinnati Bengals 1:00 pm
11/27 Jacksonville Jaguars 1:00 pm
12/4 @ Oakland Raiders 4:05 pm
12/11 Pittsburgh Steelers 1:00 pm
12/18 Cleveland Browns 1:00 pm
12/24 Miami Dolphins 1:00 pm
01/01 @ New York Jets 1:00 pm

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