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Buffalo Bills News - June 27, 2003

Marker Buffalo Bills Bosters Club Photos [8:55 AM]
TBD reports: On Tuesday, June 24, Howard Simon was the guest speaker at the Buffalo Bills Bosters Meeting. In Howard's talk he fielded questions and told about his view of the season. He thinks it will have to be a 12-4 team to win the East. He thinks the Bills have the possibility of being 11-5 team.

Marker Ten 'must stops' on training camp tour [8:52 AM]
NFL.com reports: 10. Last but not least, the Buffalo Bills. Tom Donahoe has done a masterful job over the past two years -- clearing cap space, acquiring Drew Bledsoe, drafting well and securing quality veteran talent for the defense. Even if rookie running back Willis McGahee is out in shorts doing some drill work, it makes this stop a must. I think the Bills are poised to make a significant move this year, and I want to know this team inside and out.

Marker Man held in linebacker's slaying [5:31 AM]
Philadelphia Inquirer reports: 'Covington, who was living in Crofton, Md., was visiting friends at a Coachman Manor apartment on Gibbsboro Road when one of the residents answered the door. Three men with handguns rushed inside. They had hoped to rob the apartment of marijuana or money, prosecutors said.'

Marker Man charged in ex-NFL linebacker's death [5:30 AM]
Philadelphia Inquirer reports: 'Covington, of Winslow Township, was shot multiple times inside a unit at the Coachman Manor Apartments on Gibbsboro Road in Lindenwold on November 29. Covington was visiting friends at the apartment when three intruders, all with handguns, forced their way in.'

Marker Man charged in Covington killing [5:23 AM]
Cherry Hill Courier Post reports: 'A former Philadelphia man being held in a North Carolina jail on drug offenses has been charged with murdering former professional football player Damien Covington at the Lindenwold apartment of Covington's brother last fall.'

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June 26, 2003

Marker Training Camp Daily Practice Schedule [5:54 PM]
BuffaloBills.com reports: This is a tentative schedule and is subject to change. Fans are encouraged to call the team's training camp hotline (800-441-5942) or keep checking back to this page for more accurate information.

Marker Snippets from the film room [3:21 PM]
Sporting News reports: Against the run, the 3-4 scheme uses three big, two-gap defensive linemen playing nose tackle and the two end positions. These linemen are asked to occupy blockers up front, forcing the outside linebackers to seal off the edges. This leaves two inside linebackers chasing down the run instead of one, which helps explain why smaller 4-3 middle linebackers Zach Thomas of the Dolphins and London Fletcher of the Bills wear down during the season.

Marker Man wanted in killing of former NFL player found in North Carolina jail [3:01 PM]
AP reports: 'A man being held in a North Carolina jail has been charged with murder in the killing of former Buffalo Bills linebacker Damien Covington.'

Marker Where Are They Now? [10:23 AM]
BuffaloBills.com reports: Frank Reich, the QB who will always be remembered for leading the greatest comebacks in both NCAA and NFL history now lives in Charlotte, NC with his wife Linda and their three daughters. Described as a "fervent Christian" in the Charlotte Observer, Frank will take over as the head of the Reformed Theological Seminary in Charlotte on July 1. Reich, 41, retired from the NFL in 1998 after a 13-year career with four teams (Bills, Panthers, Jets and Lions). Update on Tom Janik & Mark Brammer

Marker Sammy Morris to read in children's libraries [8:59 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Buffalo running back Sammy Morris will kick off the UPS/Buffalo Bills Summer Reading Program on Friday in Buffalo and Fairport.'

Marker McKenzie is honored for service to community [5:28 AM]
Detroit News reports: 'Although football is the driving force, many who gather tonight are grateful to McKenzie because his after school programs assisted them with computer, social, mathematical and grammatical skills to make it in the everyday work force.'

June 25, 2003

Marker Thurman Thomas Racing to debut at Lake Erie [2:44 PM]
Motorsport.com reports: '"I will be putting the same energy that I gave on the field during my NFL career into this race car team," Thomas stated. "We have an amazing team and I can't wait until we compete in our first race in Erie, Pennsylvania."

Marker Bills Alumni Spotlight: George "Butch" Byrd [10:12 AM]
BuffaloBills.com reports: Defensive back George "Butch" Byrd had a tough decision to make after his Boston University playing days were over in 1964. Take a chance with the AFL or go and play in the NFL. "At that particular time, the AFL was still a fledgling league and the NFL had everything going for it. So anybody who opted for the other league, if you will, was looked upon as you were kind of stupid," laughed Byrd, the Billsí fourth-round selection.

Marker Bills Express Tickets Selling Fast [9:18 AM]
BuffaloBills.com reports: The train leaves Albany and makes pick-up stops in Schenectady, Syracuse, Utica and Rochester before arriving at the Depew station. From there, Bills Express passengers board buses which take them to Ralph Wilson Stadium.

June 24, 2003

Marker Booster Club Meeting Tuesday [11:52 AM]
TBD reports: The booster club meeting is at the Ralph tonight. Howard Simon is the media personality. Possibly a few players but nothing for sure. The highlight video will be played.

Marker Q&A with Bills RB Prospect Ken Simonton [11:50 AM]
ESN reports: But it is a crowded backfield, so the reps are going to be less.
Simonton: ďNo doubt and thatís just life. Thatís going to be the situation anywhere you go as a free agent just getting signed in. Youíre going to be the underdog. That situation is not going to change anywhere. I prefer to be around this kind of talent. If Iím going to sit out Ė itís going to be because I got some damn good backs ahead of me.Ē

June 23, 2003

Marker New-look Bills appear ready to contend [8:23 PM]
The Sporting News reports: "I think the sleeping giant is about to awaken in Buffalo," says Colts GM Bill Polian, the lead architect of the Bills' Super Bowl run in the early 1990s. "Last year, (Bills GM) Tom Donahoe did a great job repairing their offense, and this year he appears to have done a similarly great job of fixing their defense. So much, of course, can still happen, with injuries, bad bounces of the ball, etc. But on paper, that's now a football team that has to be reckoned with on both sides of the ball."

Marker Receivers who will make big gains in 2003 [8:21 PM]
NFL.com reports: Josh Reed, Buffalo -- Drew Bledsoe is the QB, Peerless Price is gone and the defense will get the ball back for the offense more this year. Reed will enter his second season with enough experience to make the jump up to starter. With Eric Moulds opposite him, Reed should double his receptions in 2003.

Marker Arena football: Crossover Appeal [8:20 PM]
St. Petersburg Times reports: Among Tampa Bay Storm players, WR/DB Antoine "T.T." Toliver and OL/SL Al Lucas have been offered tryouts with the Green Bay Packers. Offensive specialist Freddie Solomon has received interest from the Buffalo Bills. Defensive specialist Corey Sawyer worked out for the Bills during the season.

Marker Smart Money [8:19 PM]
SI reports: Henry was told by Bills coach Gregg Williams two weeks after the season they were going to expand his role next year and that he'd probably carry the ball more. This is a man you want to replace?

Marker Growing Up Bledsoe [3:46 PM]
BuffaloBills.com reports: '"When it was all said and done," Mac says, "he liked the guy in the mirror."'

Marker Bills connect with out-of-town fans [5:09 AM]
Business First of Buffalo reports: 'Within the NFL, the Bills are considered in the upper echelon in terms of fan support - both at home and away from the region.'

June 22, 2003

Marker Lynch learns from true field general [4:42 PM]
Boston Globe reports: 'How does [Donohoe] assess his own team after minicamp? ''It's getting harder to tell what your offensive and defensive linemen can do at these camps because there's no hitting,'' he said. ''We're complying with the letter of the basic agreement more than ever. I know that with cap money being tight, if your player moves haven't worked out by mid-August, there's not a lot you can do.'''

Marker Bills Fans Selected To Promote NFL Coverage on CBS [1:47 PM]
BuffaloBills.com reports: The cast members, which also included the celebrity Bills Brothers and the well-known Elvis impersonator, were asked to dress and cheer as they would on game day at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Throughout the different scenes that were shot, the group acted out different parts of the game, cheering for kickoffs, touchdowns, missed passes and big hits. Snow was also created to add effect. Photos

June 20, 2003

Marker A Closer Look atÖ Travis Brown [1:35 PM]
BuffaloBills.com reports: '[Q:] What restaurant has the best wings in Buffalo? [A:] "I haven't eaten at a lot of different places, but the best that I have had were at the Big Tree."'

Marker Chiefs sign NFL Europe LBs Cohen and Jones [7:50 AM]
NFL.com reports: LBs Dustin Cohen and Fred Jones each agreed to one-year contracts. Cohen originally entered the league as a UDFA with Buffalo in 2000 and also spent time on Chicago 's practice squad that season. Jones entered the NFL as a UDFA with Buffalo in 2000 and was cut by Buffalo as suprise final cut on September 2, 2002.

Marker Unsung heroes on special teams [7:46 AM]
NFL.com reports: Levy was always proud to promote the special teams game to his players. He would usually keep five receivers on the roster, but the fifth receiver wasn't necessarily the fifth-best receiver he had in camp, but rather a solid special teams player. That's how Steve Tasker made the Bills. Ironically, both of those coaches have taken teams to the Super Bowl.

Marker Bills sign Sobieski [5:17 AM]
D and C reports: 'Sobieski was taken 151st overall in last Aprilís draft after a six-year career at Iowa, during which he missed the 1999 and 2000 seasons because of shoulder injuries.'

June 19, 2003

Marker The Bills Have Another Draft Pick Under Contract In Sobieski [8:04 PM]
WGR-AM reports: 'The Bills project him as a center, but he played mostly tackle in mini camp.'

Marker Donahoe has addressed Billsí needs [7:58 PM]
Olean Times Herald reports: 'It started as research for a Pro Football Weekly feature on the Buffalo Billsí defense. But it ended with some unexpected insight.'

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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
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10/09 @ Los Angeles Rams 4:25 pm
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10/23 @ Miami Dolphins 1:00 pm
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11/27 Jacksonville Jaguars 1:00 pm
12/4 @ Oakland Raiders 4:05 pm
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