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Buffalo Bills News - January 21, 2003

Marker Rams hire fairchild as offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach [1:27 PM] reports: 'Fairchild joins the Rams from the Buffalo Bills, where he spent the past two seasons (2001-02) as running backs coach.'

Marker Fairchild given title of QBs coach/offensive coordinator [1:26 PM]
ESPN reports: 'St. Louis Rams coach Mike Martz continued the revamping of his staff in the wake of a disappointing season, hiring Buffalo Bills running backs coach Steve Fairchild as the team's new quarterbacks coach and offensive coordinator.'

Marker Bills & Tops Friendly Markets Combine On Sack Donation To Western NY Food Bank [1:00 PM] reports: Ruben Brown will join representatives of Tops Friendly Markets to cap the "Sack Back" program. Tops agreed to donate 40 sacks of groceries for every sack recorded by the Bills defense during the 2002 season. The Bills sacked the quarterback 30 times, resulting in a donation of 1,200 bags of groceries to the Food Bank of WNY. The value of the donation is $12,000.

Marker Playoff Flashback: Bills 51, Los Angeles Raiders 3 [11:45 AM] reports: The Bills won their first AFC Championship with one of the most dominating performances ever displayed in a title game. Buffalo set the tone for the day by driving 75 yards after the opening KO and scored the initial TD when QB Jim Kelly picked up a bad shotgun snap and scrambled to find WR James Lofton for a 13-yard pass.

Marker Important dates in Buffalo Bills history (Jan. 20-26) [11:32 AM] reports: January 26, 1988 - SHANE CONLAN NAMED 1987 ROOKIE OF YEAR Bills' LB Shane Conlan was named 1987 defensive "Rookie of the Year" by the Pro Football Writers of America.

Marker 5th Down: Questions from the Mailbox [10:14 AM] reports: What area of the team needs the most help through free agency or the draft? What are the chances of keeping Peerless Price? So how does the Bills' salary cap outlook shape up for next year and beyond?

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January 20, 2003

Marker Legendary Cleveland running back wants to tell all in biography [1:31 PM]
Pittsburgh Post Gazette reports: 'For all of Gilchrist's attributes, he grated on Buffalo Coach Lou Saban. With the Bills riding an eight-game winning streak in 1964, Gilchrist maintains that Saban threw a game in a fit of petulance aimed at him. Gilchrist got the ball only 11 times while quarterbacks Kemp and Daryle Lamonica filled the air with more than 50 passes. To protest Saban's strategy, Gilchrist benched himself.'

January 19, 2003

Marker Encroachment: Blue with Envy [12:12 PM] reports: Now the two-time Pro Bowler has made such an impact on the league and his franchise that he is the only animal allowed inside his NFL stadium. This policy appears to be in sharp contrast to Oakland's Network Associates Coliseum, where animals are encouraged to break out reflective black and silver costumes to torture opponents from the Black Hole.

Marker Martz will have former QB help run Rams attack [9:51 AM]
St. Louis Post Dispatch reports: 'As things turned out, Martz had to offer the offensive coordinator's title to wrest Fairchild from the Bills. "They weren't amenable to having him come here as a position coach - that would have been a lateral move," Martz said.'

Marker Bills' three candidates have Hall of Fame credentials [9:27 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'The Buffalo Bills' three candidates - Ralph Wilson, Joe DeLamielleure and James Lofton - are extraordinarily deserving of induction. Here's why...'.

January 18, 2003

Marker Bills RB Coach Declines Extension [9:44 PM]
Empire reports: Bills have interviewed Green Bay assistant offensive line coach Pat Ruel for their vacant ofeensive line position. Ruel has only three years NFL coaching experience, but has been an offensive line coach for 28 years. He has spent the past two years in his current capacity with the Packers following a one-year stint guiding the Detroit Lions offensive line.

Marker Mike Doser: STs coach Smith coming back for more [9:42 PM]
Shout! reports: Special teams coach Danny Smith will return for at least another year, despite his units' overall performance drop-off, in which punt and kickoff return yardage declined and opponent kickoff return yardage increased.

Marker Chris Brown: Bills Re-Sign Seven Assistants, Fairchild Declines [9:38 PM]
WGR reports: The Buffalo Bills announced Friday that five assistant coaches have re-signed contracts. Terms of the contracts were not disclosed. Running backs coach, Steve Fairchild was offered a contract, but elected to pursue other opportunities. That leaves the coaching staff with another position to fill.

Marker Buffalo coach will join Rams, sources say [6:33 PM]
St. Louis Post Dispatch reports: 'Buffalo running backs coach Steve Fairchild is in line to join the Rams' coaching staff, sources in Buffalo and St. Louis have told the Post-Dispatch.'

Marker Bills re-up with seven assistant coaches [9:18 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Terms were not disclosed, but a league source said each received a two-year renewal, not just a one-year contract.'

Marker Ex-Bill Parker enters broadcasting arena with AFL games [9:17 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Parker, who had a radio call-in show during his Bills years, and former Dallas star Michael Irvin will be the studio analysts alongside host Al Trautwig for NBC's coverage of the Arena Football League.'

Marker Seven assistants re-sign with Bills [6:18 AM]
D and C reports: 'Buffalo still has coaching vacancies at offensive line, linebacking and running back.'

January 17, 2003

Marker Bills Announce 2003 Ticket Price Structure [6:42 PM] reports: Season and individual game tickets in several sections will increase by $3.00 per game. Those sections include lower level sideline seats, upper deck seats, and 200 level seats in the tunnel end zone. The price for tickets in the Tops Family Section will remain the same and over 500 new seats have been added. That brings the total number of seats in the Tops Family Section to nearly 1,400.

Marker Bills resign five assistants [4:31 PM]
AP reports: 'Danny Smith (special teams), Fred Graves (receivers), Steve Jackson (safties/third down specialist) Dan Neal (tight end) and Pat Thomas (defensive backs/cornerbacks) all resigned contracts.'

Marker Playoff Flashback: Jan. 17, 1993 [4:04 PM] reports: Kicker Steve Christie connected on five field goals and quarterback Jim Kelly returned to the lineup to lead Buffalo to a 29-10 victory over Miami, and a berth in a third straight Super Bowl.

Marker Where Are They Now Archive [3:20 PM] reports: Have you ever wondered what happens to NFL players when their playing days are done? Read about Ray Bentley, Jerry Butler, Joe Cribbs, Joe Ferguson, Daryle Lamonica, Pete Metzelaars, Darryl Talley and other former Buffalo Bills players.

Marker STs coach Smith coming back for more [12:38 PM]
Shout reports: Special teams coach Danny Smith will return for at least another year, despite his units’ overall performance drop-off, in which punt and kickoff return yardage declined and opponent kickoff return yardage increased. The Bills also signed six other coaches, but their running backs coach or defensive line assistant coach were not among them.

Marker Bills Re-Sign Assistant Coaches [11:30 AM] reports: The Buffalo Bills today announced that five assistant coaches have re-signed contracts.

Marker Bengals coaches coming, going [9:06 AM]
Cincinnati Enquirer reports: 'The Buffalo Bills requested permission to interview Bengals offensive line coach Paul Alexander. Bengals spokesman Jack Brennan couldn't confirm Thursday night whether the team has given the Bills the right to speak to Alexander. The Rochester, N.Y., native has been the Bengals' offensive line coach since 1995.'

Marker Bratkowski, Thomas to fill coordinator roles [9:05 AM]
ESPN reports: 'Lewis on Wednesday spoke with current offensive line assistant Paul Alexander about staying on but there was no resolution of his status. Alexander was recently interviewed by the Buffalo Bills.'

January 16, 2003

Marker Pro Football Hall of Fame Finalist: Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. [9:48 AM] reports: Writers in recent years have aptly described Bills Chairman Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. as "the voice of reason" and "the conscience of the NFL" and his fortitude may be best illustrated by the fact that of the original eight AFL owners only Wilson has kept his team in its originating city. This point was one of those more obvious reasons from the Buffalo News selecting Wilson as the "Top Sports Figure" in Western New York in the past millennium.

Marker Szabo on Bills' list [9:04 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Szabo, 59, was linebackers coach for Jacksonville the past nine seasons.'

Marker Bills continue interviews [5:17 AM]
D and C reports: 'Meanwhile, according to broadcast reports in Buffalo, the Bills are interested in former Atlanta assistant Don Blackmon and former Seattle assistant Johnny Holland, as candidates for its linebackers opening.'

January 15, 2003

Marker Page 2: Flag day [8:04 PM]
ESPN reports: Jerry Rice acquired one of the few possible records he does not already own, most yards in postseason play -- 2,132. Whom did he surpass? Thurman Thomas, who played seven years fewer than Rice. (You'll hear the postseason yardage records, rarely discussed, mentioned a lot when Thomas is a first-ballot Hall of Fame entrant.)

Marker Bills: The way we hear it... [8:02 PM]
Pro Football Weekly reports: The way we hear it, it would be more of a surprise if former Bengals head coach Dick LeBeau was not hired by the Bills than if he were hired at this point. LeBeau is a coach whom general manager Tom Donahoe has faith in from their days together in Pittsburgh, and Donahoe truly wants him on the staff. Since the Bills are looking to add more experience in the coaching ranks, LeBeau seems to be a perfect fit. Still, the Bills’ pursuit of the one-time Steelers defensive coordinator doesn’t mean Bills defensive coordinator Jerry Gray is on the outs. After Buffalo’s defense turned it up a notch down the stretch, Gray’s job may be safe — for now. But if the Bills hire LeBeau and make him the new LB coach or create a position for him, LeBeau could be in line to take over for Gray if the defense doesn’t show well right away next season.

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11/27 Jacksonville Jaguars 1:00 pm
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