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Buffalo Bills News - December 30, 2002

Marker Bills finish a big step forward [9:48 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"This gives us hope for next year," said safety Coy Wire. "We don't want the season to end. I can't wait for next year."'

Marker Winning finale leaves Bills upbeat [9:48 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'With the exception of losses to Oakland, the first New England game and the second New York Jets game, the Bills had a chance to win heading into the final period of the other five losses.'

Marker Peerless leaves door slightly ajar for his return [9:47 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"I'm sure Peerless is going to do the right thing and I'll support him no matter what his decision is," Moulds said. "But I'm hoping he stays. We have a chance to do something special here and it would be a lot better if we were able to do it here together."'

Marker After a worthy final act, the curtain falls too soon [9:47 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Williams still has a lot to prove as a game-day coach. But he's obviously earned the right to coach another year. Donahoe, the general manager, gushed about him after the win. If he has that much faith in Williams, he should give him a one-year extension and spare him the indignity of coaching as a lame duck next season.'

Marker Crowd tells Spikes he's wanted [9:46 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Perhaps no other Bills defender has shown more improvement over the last two games than rookie cornerback Kevin Thomas.'

Marker Bills catch breaks in 2003 schedule [9:45 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Either the Bills or Dolphins will play on Thanksgiving at Dallas because the game will be on CBS, meaning the visiting team must be from the AFC. The Bills and Dolphins are the only AFC teams visiting Dallas next season.'

Marker Monday Billboard [9:44 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'The paid attendance was announced at 47,850. The actual attendance was about 10,000 shy of that.'

Marker Worst season ever finally over [9:44 AM]
Cincinnati Post reports: 'In 45 games since LeBeau took over after Bruce Coslet resigned three games into the 2000 season, the Bengals have won just 12 times, including a 4-21 record in their last 25 contests.'

Marker Spikes free, but not really [9:43 AM]
Cincinnati Post reports: 'Still, Spikes will be a wanted man, and Buffalo could be a possible destination. Bills fans called openly to Spikes during the game, leaving a good taste in his mouth about this trip to Western New York. For the second straight week, Spikes played a top-flight game, leading the Bengals with 12 tackles, a half of a sack, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery, his third in the past two games.'

Marker Kitna falls 6 snaps shy of bonus [9:42 AM]
Cincinnati Post reports: 'The Bills have suffered their share of defensive woes this season but finished off the season strong. In their final 12 quarters of the season, the Bills gave up just 32 points, including just three touchdowns.'

Marker Eight is not enough [5:36 AM]
D and C reports: '“We made progress, but we certainly hope there’s nobody in the locker room who’s satisfied with 8-8 and going home because if there is, we have the wrong people,” Donahoe said. “And I don’t think we do. I think our players realize we made progress, it’s close, but we’re not there yet, we still have work to do.”'

Marker However you spin it, 8-8 is just 8-8 [5:36 AM]
D and C reports: 'Instead of 610 pass attempts for Bledsoe, how about 100 more carries for Travis Henry (fumbles and all)?'

Marker Five more wins means one more chance for Bills' coach [5:35 AM]
D and C reports: 'For that reason alone, Gregg Williams deserves at least one more shot as Bills coach.'

Marker Bengals prove it could be worse [5:34 AM]
D and C reports: 'Once again the Bills came out of a game without any serious injuries, finishing a season that had to be one of the best in team history in terms of health. It is believed the Bills lost the fewest man games to injury of any team in the NFL.'

Marker Buffalo Bills Week 16 report card [5:34 AM]
D and C reports: 'There haven’t been many times over the past two seasons when Gregg Williams and his staff outclassed the opposition, but this was one of them.'

Marker Questions surround 8-8 Bills [5:33 AM]
Toronto Star reports: 'Moulds had 94 catches in 2000 as well as 1,326 yards receiving. That prolific season prompted the Bills to secure Moulds' future in Buffalo. He was signed to a six-year, $40 million (U.S.) contract with a $12.5 million signing bonus. Can the Bills afford to do the same with Price?'

Marker Bengals reach new low in 27-9 loss to Bills [5:32 AM]
Cincinnati Enquirer reports: 'On finishing 2-14, LeBeau said, "I could have done without that question. We're not happy about it."'

Marker Bengals players, fans wait for Brown to act [5:32 AM]
Cincinnati Enquirer reports: 'They are a combined 55-137 since the start of the 1991 season, also known as the Mike Brown Era.'

Marker Frustrated Spikes contemplating future [5:31 AM]
Cincinnati Enquirer reports: 'Bills fans cheered Spikes throughout the game. "Yeah, they did," Spikes said when asked if Buffalo fans let him know they'd like to see him wearing a blue uniform next year. "For a minute, I kind of felt like I was at home. How much support they, a lot of fans were talking, even if I made a play, when I walked back to the sidelines, they were happy, more than I was happy. It was interesting to see."'

Marker Bengals Notebook [5:30 AM]
Cincinnati Enquirer reports: 'For the sixth time this season, the Bengals fell behind Sunday by at least 20-0.'

Marker Bengals Report Card [5:29 AM]
Cincinnati Enquirer reports: 'COACHING, F: The players laid a big egg in what was likely Dick LeBeau's last game as head coach. The team was uninspired. The only time the players showed spark was after Bills linebacker London Fletcher took three cheap shots.'

Marker Bengals game by the numbers [5:28 AM]
Cincinnati Enquirer reports: '4th, 6th, 5th, 5th, 5th, 4th: Bengals' finishes in their own division the past six seasons.'

Marker Bengals in 3 words: Stink, stank, stunk [5:27 AM]
Dayton Daily News reports: 'Bengals linebacker Takeo Spikes got some love from Bills fans who want him to sign here as an unrestricted free agent in 2003. Don't worry, Bengals fans. The club is prepared to use the "transition player" tag on Spikes, meaning the Bengals can match any offer sheet he signs with another club. "They (Bills fans) were telling me, 'This is where you belong,' ’’ Spikes said. "It was nice to know."'

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December 29, 2002

Marker Game-day notebook: Holmgren offers to give up GM duties [8:49 PM]
CBS Sportsline reports: The hottest name being thrown around in the Cincinatti is Tom Modrak, currently working with the Bills (coincidentally Cincy's opponent today). The Buffalo personnel man and former Eagle would be interested in becoming a GM, even in Cincy, if Brown decides to restructure.

Marker Week 17: Tom Donahoe Postgame Quotes [8:01 PM] reports: "I think Gregg did an excellent job and under the circumstances I think that some of the criticism he was taking was unfair and unwarranted. Our coaches in two years have not operated with a full roster. Next year we will. I'm anxious to see them coach and perform with a full complement of players."

Marker Week 17: Bills-Bengals Postgame Quotebook [7:44 PM] reports: "We are disappointed, granted the team did not have a lot of success last year, but I think when we got together as a team and saw what we had we felt like we had a team that could contend and could get into the playoffs and make something happen. So we are disappointed with what has happened this year but at the same time, optimistic looking ahead to next year. I think that we did a lot of things this year that we could build on and we are still a young team."

Marker Bills Close Season With Win [7:43 PM] reports: Drew Bledsoe hooked up with Eric Moulds for 10 touchdowns this season. This is 92nd occasion since 1970 that an NFL QB-receiver combo have teamed up for 10+ touchdowns in one season (two other combos in 2002: Jeff Garcia-Terrell Owens, S.F. and Peyton Manning-Marvin Harrison, Ind.)

Marker Bengals end worst [5:16 PM] reports: 'A season dictated by a series of blowouts in the first month of the season fittingly ended in one for the Bengals.'

Marker Bills 27, Bengals 9 [4:17 PM]
AP reports: 'It also was a most discouraging finale for Bengals quarterback Jon Kitna, who came six snaps short of earning a $1.625 million contract bonus. To achieve the bonus, Kitna needed to take part in 61 snaps against Buffalo to appear in 80 percent of Cincinnati's offensive plays this season.'

Marker Buffalo 27, Cincinnati 9 [4:16 PM]
Sportsticker reports: 'Capping an outstanding first year in Buffalo, Bledsoe completed 23-of-31 passes for 230 yards to help the Bills (8-8) match a franchise record by registering a five-win improvement over last season.'

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