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Buffalo Bills News - December 11, 2003

Marker Inside slant [5:14 AM]
CBS Sportsline reports: 'The 25-year-old Henry, who is just 63 yards shy of becoming Buffalo's fourth all-time rusher, has said he can't envision a situation where both he and McGahee share the football in harmony. Henry thrives on work and he has assumed that either he or McGahee will be traded eventually. "We'll always listen but we're not going to be actively pursing something like that (with Travis)," Donahoe said. "Who's to say what's going to happen in the future, but we didn't take Willis with the intention of doing something with Travis."'

Marker Strategy and personnel [5:13 AM]
CBS Sportsline reports: 'Since allowing 343 yards in consecutive losses to Miami and Philadelphia early in the season, the Bills have yielded an average of just 79 yards rushing per game. The New York Jets got a full dose of Adams last Sunday when he finished with seven tackles, two behind the line of scrimmage, two sacks and a batted down pass. It was one of the few games where Adams was part of Buffalo's third-down package, and he responded like a kid in a candy store with the extra snaps.'

Marker Notes, quotes, anecdotes [5:12 AM]
CBS Sportsline reports: 'How realistic are Buffalo's chances of snagging a wild-card playoff berth? At 6-7, the Bills trail four teams for the two spots (Tennessee, 9-4; Denver, 8-5; Miami, 8-5; Cincinnati, 7-6). A final record of 9-7 or even 8-8 would put Buffalo in a tie-breaker race, but they need to win out and have the other clubs stumble a bit. Buffalo can take care of its own business with head-to-head games against Tennessee and Miami and it already owns a win over the Bengals. "We don't have a choice but to think we can," said DT Sam Adams when asked if the Bills can make the post-season. "Someone always gets in at 9-7, always. The people that are going to the playoffs, New England, Tennessee, we play Miami. As far as we're concerned, they have to go through us."'

Marker Titans understand importance of Bills game [5:11 AM] reports: '“They’re not number one for no reason,” Titans TE Frank Wycheck said. “You look across their defense and they’ve got Sam Adams and Pat Williams up front, we probably won’t play two better corners, the linebackers are great, and then they’ve got Lawyer Milloy at safety. They’re stacked. They’re loaded. We’ll really have to execute our offense and make big plays to be successful this week.”'

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December 10, 2003

Marker Bills Coach Gregg Williams Previews Tennessee [7:16 PM] reports: '"I'm here as a Buffalo Bill. We went back there in the preseason game. It was a real hostile environment in the preseason game. That's a tough place to play. We're going to have to play well. All I'm focused on is this next week and the Buffalo Bills. Not the match ups with friends. Just the Buffalo Bills."'

Marker Quarterback Drew Bledsoe Previews Tennessee [7:15 PM] reports: '"Unfortunately for us, these road games that we go play, we always seem to catch some of the best teams in the league on their turf. It's a tremendous challenge if you're playing the Titans home or away. A neutral setting is going to be a big challenge. When you get down there and they have their crowd behind them it's one of the louder places in the league to play. It's a big challenge for us, no question. We're going to have to do a great job of communicating in spite of the crowd noise. We are going to have to play very physical with them. They have a very physical defense and a tremendous defensive line. They have a good line backing core with a kid that I used to baby-sit playing as their inside left linebacker, Peter Sirmon. You know you're getting old when you got a guy you used to baby-sit in his fourth year in the league. They have a couple good corners and their safety will come up and hit you. They are a very physical defense and we're going to have to match their physical style. We're going to have to continue to run the ball even though they are number one in the league against the rush. Then we need to make some big plays in the passing game. The teams that have beaten the Titans have made some big plays in the passing game."'

Marker The Bills Injury Report Keeps Shrinking [7:11 PM]
WGR-AM reports: 'Keith McKenzie, Sammy Morris and Mike Pucillo all practiced on Wednesday and are listed as questionable for Sunday in Tennessee. Trey Teague was rested on Wednesday while Dominique Stevenson went home sick.'

Marker No matter the injury, McNair just keeps playing -- and winning [7:10 PM]
AP reports: '``I go week in and week out to try to get my team to win, and I just feel like as a quarterback, being a leader, you have to go out and help your team go to war and put them in the best position to win.'''

Marker Titans Fisher backs Williams' job in Buffalo [7:09 PM]
AP reports: '``Gregg's a fine coach and he's doing a good job,'' said Fisher, the Tennessee Titans coach and Williams' friend and former boss. ``This decision is in somebody else's hands. I just hope they're objective and look at the job that he's done there.'''

Marker Eric Moulds Named Honorary Chair of Time to Hoop, Buffalo '04 [4:55 PM] reports: 'Buffalo Bills Pro Bowl wide receiver Eric Moulds was announced as the honorary chairman of Time to Hoop, Buffalo '04 at a news conference at the team's training facility on December 10.'

Marker Humble Wycheck enters elite 500-catch club [4:00 PM] reports: 'As the Titans line up against the Buffalo Bills Sunday, Wycheck is bombarded with memories of what he calls one of the most joyous moments of his career. His lateral to WR Kevin Dyson in the final seconds of Tennessee’s playoff game vs. Buffalo nearly four years ago will stand out in his mind forever. The play known as “The Music City Miracle,” gave the Titans a 22-16 victory over the Bills, and will go down as one of the greatest plays in NFL history. “It was just one of the best feelings I’ve ever had in my life,” Wycheck said. “Every time we play Buffalo, it’s brought up. It’s just a great time to put yourself back in that position. I can remember it like it was just yesterday. It was such a great feeling and something just great to be a part of.”'

Marker Dyson quietly having best season of his career [3:59 PM] reports: 'He has started in 42 consecutive games and is again tied for the team lead with four interceptions this season, including two returned for touchdowns.'

Marker Conference Call: Bills head coach Gregg Williams [3:58 PM] reports: 'I would hope that I would be here next year but that’s not my call and I’m not worrying about it right now. My worry is the Tennessee Titans. If we don’t play any better than the last time we came down there, I may be stuck down there driving a cab.'

Marker Conference Call: Bills LB Takeo Spikes [1:57 PM] reports: 'I think we’re still in the chase. One of the things that we brought amongst ourselves is just the fact that we can’t worry about everybody else. We made our own bed to lie in, so what we have to do is continue to do what we have to do to be successful week in and week out. Every game for us is a playoff game. It’s like we’re on pins and needles already. That’s why we take the approach that this is our playoff game week in and week out.'

Marker Sirmon, Bledsoe trace roots to Walla Walla [1:57 PM] reports: 'Bledsoe and Sirmon meet each other on the field Sunday for the first time in a regular season game. It’s something that Sirmon is looking forward to. “It’s kind of crazy. I never really thought about playing against him until this year because we’re in different divisions and just don’t play Buffalo very often,” Sirmon said. “Our families were friends when I was growing up. A lot of people from Walla Walla still keep up with Drew and myself, so it’s going to be fun.”'

Marker Tops Game Ball Winner: Travis Henry [1:56 PM] reports: ' visitors selected running back Travis Henry as the Tops Game Ball of the Week winner for his performance against the New York Jets on December 7.'

Marker Bills tackle Titans in Nashville [1:54 PM]
The Sports Network reports: '"At this point and time, it's just about our football team getting better, in all honesty. I've got my best friend in coaching over on [the Titans'] staff," said Williams. "It has nothing to do with anything other than our football team winning the next game. We have to go down and beat a very formidable opponent."'

Marker McNair ailing again [1:53 PM]
The Sports Network reports: 'The Titans have slipped into second place in the AFC South, a game and a season sweep tiebreaker behind the Colts. Tennessee is currently earmarked for a wild card spot, but only sits one contest ahead of the Miami Dolphins and Denver Broncos for the final playoff slot. The Titans can register a playoff berth this week with a win, a Miami loss and a Cincinnati loss or tie.'

Marker Staying alive [1:51 PM]
The Sports Network reports: '"At this point and time, it's just about our football team getting better, in all honesty. I've got my best friend in coaching over on [the Titans'] staff," said Williams. "It has nothing to do with anything other than our football team winning the next game. We have to go down and beat a very formidable opponent."'

Marker Reed enjoying a receiver's renaissance for Bills [8:53 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"Earlier in the year people were downing him, but all he's done is stay steady," Bills coach Gregg Williams said. "He's stayed in his game and gotten better and better every week. He's gotten the confidence of his quarterback. He's got the confidence in our run game. He's got the confidence in our coordinator. He's just done his job, going about taking care of business. He'll be very productive before the year is out."'

Marker MRI shows McNair cracked bone spur [5:15 AM]
Nashville Tennessean reports: '''When you crack it, it is going to almost be like a broken bone. Not that something bad is going to happen, it just may hurt and that is really the bottom line,'' Goitz said. ''So if you can manage the pain, it doesn't matter. ... Some people are able to suck it up so you can actually still perform but you are hurting.'''

Marker Younger Titans struggle to keep confidence high [5:14 AM]
Nashville Tennessean reports: 'No small item for the Titans (9-4), who are now fighting for a playoff spot with a 53-man roster that includes 23 players with two years or less of NFL experience, 29 players with three years or less experience.'

Marker Good news for McNair [5:13 AM]
Nashville City Paper reports: 'McNair, who is in a walking boot, probably won’t practice at all this week in preparation for Tennessee’s home game with the Buffalo Bills. The quarterback most likely will be a game-time decision. He has made 45 consecutive starts dating back to Sept. 2001.'

December 9, 2003

Marker Years later,Miracle still legendary [8:22 PM] reports: "I really believe that that play catapulted us to the Super Bowl," Williams said. "It made believers out of us. The next week, we went out and won another close game. That was a direct result of having pulled out that Buffalo game."

Marker MRI on McNair shows cracked bone spur [4:40 PM]
AP reports: '``Really it's way too early in the week to be able to determine how he's going to be,'' Fisher said.'

Marker MRI shows bone spur crack [4:03 PM]
ESPN reports: 'An MRI on the Titans quarterback's ankle Monday revealed an old bone spur as well as a slight crack in the spur, ESPN's John Clayton reports Tuesday. McNair is listed as questionable for Sunday's game against the Buffalo Bills. He will not practice at all this week, and his status will be determined closer to game time.'

Marker St. Francis High's Jerry Smith Honored As Bills HS Football [3:58 PM] reports: Smith’s club finished the season with a 9-2 record and captured the Monsignor Martin Association AA Championship. He was also honored at the Monday Quarterback Club’s luncheon meeting held on Monday, December 8 at HSBC Arena.

Marker Bills Alumni Spotlight: Mike Montler [11:14 AM] reports: '"Since he was an old center and I was about 33 years old at that time, I thought he would understand my concern. We weren’t even talking money, I just wanted another two years. I’d never been hurt, never missed any games, never caused any trouble. I told Ringo I was concerned if it didn’t go well and he got fired, I would be a 34-year-old center and a new coach would come in and the first thing he’d say is ‘we’ve got to get rid of these old guys.’ I just wanted a little assurance. I thought Ringo would say, ‘Sure, Mike. I understand. I’ve been there before.’ Instead he said, ‘You’re playing here or you aren’t playing anywhere.’ So I just told him ‘I retire.’ Then later in training camp, he ended up trading me to Denver. I never figured that would happen, and then Denver winds up going to the Super Bowl. Outside of getting caught up in politics, I loved playing in Buffalo. The fans, the people. You just couldn’t get a better atmosphere for football than what they have in Buffalo."'

Marker Henry Up For Ground NFL Player of the Week [11:13 AM] reports: 'Buffalo Bills running back Travis Henry is among the finalists for FedEx Ground NFL Player of the Week honors.'

Marker Bills' four-fold mission [11:12 AM]
Nashville City Paper reports: 'If Steve McNair's mobility is limited Sunday, the Bills would be wise to test him and see just how well he can function on the move. Bills head coach Gregg Williams, as Titans fans know, isn't afraid to bring the pressure from anywhere in order to chase a quarterback, and McNair will be no exception.'

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09/10 New York Jets 1:00 pm
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