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Buffalo Bills News - November 3, 2002

Marker Pats face 'other option' [5:17 AM]
Albany Times Union reports: '"What," Belichick asked, "were the other options?" The Patriots weren't about to trade Brady, who won a Super Bowl at 24. They weren't about to keep Brady and the $100 million contract of Bledsoe. Honk if you were making sport of the Patriots when they were 3-0 and Brady was finding open receivers at will. Bledsoe never reached this stratosphere in nine seasons with the Patriots. There's no reason to think it would have happened if he stayed.'

Marker Bledsoe has opportunity to knock off former team [5:16 AM]
Nashville Tennessean reports: 'Yes, Belichick and Brady gave the Patriots their first Super Bowl victory. But what Bledsoe does from this point on might provide Belichick's real legacy in New England.'

Marker Belichick vs. Bledsoe - it had to happen [5:15 AM]
Seattle Times reports: 'In the end, New England did everything right. It replaced an aging and injured Bledsoe with the young quarterback who won the Super Bowl. It isn't the Patriots' fault that Bledsoe has recovered and found new life in a place that was supposed to be hopeless. It won't be their fault, either, if he goes out and throws for 300 yards and three touchdowns on the way to a 10-point win.'

Marker A vote for a special kind of player [5:14 AM]
San Francisco Chronicle reports: 'Here's one argument for Tasker, who was selected to the Pro Bowl seven times: The margin between him and the second-best special-teams player was wider than the margin between the best and second-best player at any other position on the Hall of Fame ballot.'

Marker Bledsoe is one Bill coming due for Patriots [5:13 AM]
Houston Chronicle reports: 'Belichick didn't want to trade Bledsoe to a team in the Patriots' division, but he had to accept the best offer and worry about the consequences later. Now, later is here.'

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November 2, 2002

Marker John Madden: Renewing acquaintances in Buffalo [11:47 PM]
ESPN reports: The Bills are playing well, though, and that's a big thing. They aren't just Bledsoe; they have a good running game with Travis Henry and good wide receivers and a pretty good defense. They really have some things going right now.

Marker Bledsoe Poised To Add To Patriots' Woes [5:37 PM]
New York Times reports: '"I know it's hard for him," Bledsoe said of Brady's struggles. "That being said, I know Tom, along with the rest of those guys, will do everything they can to bounce back. If there is one defining characteristic that overrides everything, the Patriots are, across the board, players of high character."'

Marker Slumping Patriots brace for Bledsoe and Bills [5:19 PM]
AP reports: '''Players want to win this game for Drew,'' Moulds added. ''It's an important game as far as the division is concerned, but it's also important for a guy who's a main guy on this team.'''

Marker Far, Far Outside the Huddle [5:09 PM]
Charleston Daily Mail reports: 'This monstrosity of facial hair first made its appearance during his injury stint last year, and makes him look like some malnourished lieutenant of Stonewall Jackson. Behind the Hell Beard lurks all of Bledsoe's ire, and, combined with the Pats' four-game losing skid to some of the NFL's best teams, should provide more than adequate drama.'

Marker Battle in Buffalo: Brady or Bledsoe? [2:14 PM]
Quincy Patriot Ledger reports: 'Maybe one will outplay the other in a losing effort and muddy the whole picture, allowing both sides (and there are plenty of folks choosing sides) to claim victory. But since QBs are judged largely on their team's record, more than likely one camp will issue a full-throated I-told-you-so around 4 o'clock Sunday afternoon.'

Marker Pats don't make the grade [2:13 PM]
Quincy Patriot Ledger reports: 'MVP: AFC - QB Drew Bledsoe (Bills): He's on pace to throw for 5,000 yards, just 84 shy of Dan Marino's single-season NFL record. He's gotten his hands on the ball in two of Buffalo's three overtime games and both times has thrown the winning TD pass. He's second in the league in touchdowns (16) and passer rating (98.3). We could go on and on, but you get the point.'

Marker It's all part of the job [2:12 PM]
Nashua Telegraph reports: '“I’ll be playing against an old friend of mine,” Bruschi said. “A guy that will make it fun out there, who will challenge the defense but give me a chance to make plays.”'

Marker Tops Game Ball of the Week: London Fletcher Q&A [12:53 PM] reports: "We've had some guys that have played extremely well. I can't get in and say this individual guy has been most improved. The offensive line has played extremely well. The receivers have played well. Drew is playing phenomenal. There are tons of guys that have played well. Pat Williams is played extremely well. Nate (Clements) has played well."

Marker O'Shei's Three Keys to the Game [11:02 AM] reports: New England head coach Bill Belichick is considered a defensive mastermind, one of the most creative and unpredictable coaches football has seen in decades. Preparing to face is defense is a crapshoot. You can never be sure what you’ll be seeing, so you have to be ready to make changes on the fly. How the Bills’ offense handles those in-game changes will likely determine the outcome of the game.

Marker Bills Wallpaper [10:11 AM] reports: Show your pride by putting the Bills on your computer's desktop. Check out the November look as well as other styles, including one with a complete 2002 calendar!

Marker Williams learns, adjusts, wins [9:31 AM]
D and C reports: 'You live and you learn, and one year after a disastrous NFL head coaching debut, Williams has transformed the Bills from laughable losers to wild and wacky winners.'

Marker Fletcher's memories of the Pats not so sweet [9:10 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"Last year is last year," said Fletcher, who signed with the Bills as an unrestricted free agent a month after the Super Bowl. "I can't do anything about that. It's water under the bridge. I'm on a new team now, and I'm trying to do everything I can to help the Buffalo Bills win this game. This game is important to our team. It's a big division game. It's important because it's the only one we'll be playing on Sunday."'

Marker A tale of two QBs [5:35 AM]
Toronto Sun reports: 'What adds the most juice to tomorrow's clash at Ralph Wilson Stadium has been the recent struggles endured by the man that replaced Bledsoe.'

Marker Getting reacquainted [5:34 AM]
Boston Globe reports: 'But there were still problems against the run, where they rank 29th in the NFL.'

Marker There's no debate; game is about them [5:33 AM]
Boston Globe reports: 'The Massachusetts gubernatorial election is Tuesday, but New England's big day is tomorrow, when the staggering Patriots go to Ralph Wilson Stadium in Orchard Park, N.Y., in an effort to get their season back on track and defend the football judgment of their once-infallible head coach.'

Marker Brown set to expand his roles [5:32 AM]
Boston Globe reports: 'Brown, the Patriots' top offensive weapon, wears a protective brace on the knee while playing. Asked if he thought he might need to wear the device all season, he said, ''I hope not.'''

Marker Van Pelt at ease as reservist [5:31 AM]
Boston Globe reports: '''I was disappointed at first,'' Van Pelt acknowledged yesterday. ''I was looking forward to starting. But after that wore off, I realized what a great opportunity it was to have him in here. It was a great chance to work with another great QB, another great mind to pick. So after the initial disappointment, I was excited.'''

Marker Pats zone in on Bills [5:30 AM]
Boston Herald reports: '``Any time Centers is on the field, that's certainly one option,'' said Belichick. ``I think Buffalo does a good job using all their receivers down there in the red area. Riemersma is a good red-area receiver. Centers is a good red-area receiver. Moulds and Price are guys who, if they get single coverage, can beat you on different option routes. They run fades, slants underthrown fades and fades in the back of the end zone."'

Marker Patten moves past poor effort [5:29 AM]
Boston Herald reports: 'In last Sunday's 24-16 loss to the Denver Broncos at Gillette Stadium, Patten did not record a single reception - and let a sure touchdown pass from Tom Brady sail through his hands in the end zone. Patten plans to turn things around in tomorrow's big AFC East showdown with the Buffalo Bills in Orchard Park, N.Y.'

Marker Brady now has bunch to prove [5:28 AM]
Providence Journal reports: 'This is the toughest week of the Patriot quarterback's fledgling career.'

Marker Bledsoe has found his niche in Bills' spread-out offense [5:28 AM]
Providence Journal reports: '"They've changed offenses," Belichick said of the Bills. "(Gilbride's) brought in a whole new system, which is what Kevin has run pretty much everywhere he's been, whether it was at Houston, Jacksonville or San Diego. In Pittsburgh it was more adapted to the Pittsburgh style."'

Marker Buffalo's Price having big year [5:27 AM]
Springfield Union News reports: '"I think the sky's the limit," Price said recently. "All the pieces have to be in place for a receiver to be successful. He's got to be in an offense that gives him opportunities. He needs a quarterback who believes in him. I believe I can be a top five receiver in this league. It's just the way I think, and the way I should think."'

Marker Centers: Buffalo's bull with soft hands [5:25 AM]
Woonsocket Call reports: 'Centers -- a 13-year veteran -- is the kind of player who can quietly kill you while you mistakenly devote all your attention to the more notable skill players.'

Marker Graham ready to go for first time since September [5:25 AM]
Woonsocket Call reports: 'Graham was the Patriots' first-round draft pick this season -- the 21st overall pick -- but he hasn't had much time to showcase his potential. He was inactive for the season opener, then caught four passes in the next three games before injuring his shoulder. Without much playing time lately, there's a chance he could be rusty Sunday afternoon.'

Marker Drew Bledsoe Looks to Beat Patriots After Being Benched, Traded [5:24 AM]
Bloomberg reports: 'As Bledsoe prepares for his first game against the team he once symbolized, motivation isn't hard to come by.'

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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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