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Buffalo Bills News - September 30, 2003

Marker Losing ground in Buffalo [2:14 PM]
ESPN reports: We're getting close to expunging from our memory any allusions made after the first two games of this campaign that relate to statements suggesting the Buffalo Bills are much improved versus the run. In the past two games, both defeats, the Bills defense has surrendered 343 rushing yards.

Marker Struggling Bills must win next two [1:12 PM]
Olean Times Herald reports: 'The Bills must win both games ... period. A split is unacceptable and getting swept will turn up the volume on the calls for head coach Gregg Williamsí job.'

Marker Bills Booster Club Meeting [10:57 AM]
TBD reports: Tonight (Tuesday) at 7:30 PM in Paul McGuire Suites at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Scheduled guests include the kicking team - punter, kicker and the long snapper. Come and meet them. Jon might get to do a little magic.

Marker Henry could be back Sunday [8:54 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"He had a real good workout today," Williams said after team meetings Monday. "He has worked so hard. He was really dejected that he didn't get a chance to play. I'd hope that he would be able to get right back into practice and get started for this week. That's our plan anyway."'

Marker Bills still troubled by penalties [8:53 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'This season, only Washington (44), Oakland (43) and San Diego (38) have been flagged more than the Bills (37), who also have the sixth-most penalty yards with 342.'

Marker Bills Searching For More [8:44 AM] reports: 'What disappointed me most about the Bills loss on Sunday to the Eagles was that Philadelphia came in and played a more desperate game. Even Head Coach Gregg Williams acknowledged that his team didn't wake up until the fourth quarter. I find that disturbing.'

Marker Spikes vows better Bills defense [5:17 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'ďWe have a great back coming in, and we look forward to the challenge. I look forward to it,Ē Spikes said of Corey Dillon, who has a strained groin and might not play. ďItís big (for me). To sum it up, knowing from where I came, knowing where I am now and where I want to go, thatís how big emotionally this game is for me.Ē'

Marker Is coaching to blame for a two-game skid? [5:16 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'Players follow the leader. Williams established a cavalier tone for this season at St. John Fisher College by holding just one double session. Penalties out of aggression can be excused somewhat in a sport as violent as football. But the Bills have become mentally sloppy, and clearly they arenít good enough to overcome their mistakes. Nine penalties on the defense the past two games have led to 27 points for the opposition. Gregg on Monday tactfully blamed the zebras for having a bad day, too. Thatís not what the ticket buyers want to hear.'

Marker Buffalo Bills replay [5:15 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'Donít look now, but all of a sudden the Bungles, er, the Bengals, look like a tough matchup for the slumping Bills.'

Marker Spotlight fits Spikes like a glove [5:14 AM]
Cincinnati Enquirer reports: 'The Bills have lost their last two and dropped to 2-2, but Spikes does not regret his decision to leave Cincinnati. "It has been everything I hoped it would be, even though we lost the last two," Spikes said Monday. "The reason we're losing is what we're doing to ourselves."'

Marker Injury puts Dillon on bench for Bills matchup [5:13 AM]
Dayton Daily News reports: '"Corey looks to be the only guy that maybe we'll hold out at this point," Lewis said. "We want to give him a chance to rest this week, rest through the bye, try to get him back for Baltimore and have him come smoking after that."'

Marker Inside slant [5:12 AM]
CBS Sportsline reports: 'The biggest knock on Williams during his first two years was that he wasn't a very good game day coach. His decisions left a lot to be desired, and that continues to be a prime issue.'

Marker Strategy and personnel [5:11 AM]
CBS Sportsline reports: 'What rushing offense? There wasn't one.'

Marker Notes, quotes, anecdotes [5:10 AM]
CBS Sportsline reports: 'RG Mike Pucillo has struggled badly the last two weeks against bruising run stuffers Tim Bowens of Miami and Corey Simon of Philadelphia. Pucillo has three holding calls the last two weeks (one was declined), and he has been one of the reasons the Bills haven't gotten any push in the running game.'

Marker Spikes in spotlight again [5:09 AM] reports: 'ďI think Marvin did him a favor,Ē said quarterback Jon Kitna. ďHe didnít want to be here anymore. He wanted to get a new start. We lost a great caliber football player, but we like the team we have here. You donít want guys here that just dread coming into work and dread being on the team. You donít want that.Ē'

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September 29, 2003

Marker Bengals will 'ride without' Dillon [9:51 PM]
The Sports Network reports: '"I need time to get it right," Dillon said after Sunday's game. "The most disappointing thing is I can't be out there with my boys. That was more pain than the groin. They're going to have to ride without me for a little bit. Hopefully, after the bye I can come back and be 100 percent."'

Marker Ground game leads Eagles to first victory [9:27 PM]
AP reports: '''We always believed we could run the ball,'' said Westbrook, a second-year pro from Villanova. ''We're capable of running it. We have three pretty good running backs and we have a great offensive line that can block, and when we have the opportunity, we're going to run the ball.'''

Marker Sputtering Bills taking 2-game skid personally [9:26 PM]
AP reports: 'How bad has it been? Buffalo's last two opponents have managed more first downs by penalty, eight, than the Bills have had on the ground, one each in their last two games.'

Marker Dillon likely to miss Bills game [9:25 PM]
AP reports: 'Bengals running back Corey Dillon is expected to miss next weekend's game at Buffalo because of a strained groin.'

Marker No Excuses [4:34 PM]
WOKR-TV reports: I donít want to hear any excuses for the Bills loss on Sunday to the Eagles. No one cares that Travis Henry is hurt. Run the ball. No one cares that the Eagles were due for a win. The Bills were coming off a humiliating loss in Miami. No one cares that a few calls went against the Bills. The referees donít drop passes and miss tackles.

Marker Autographed Buffalo To Be Auctioned Off [2:34 PM] reports: 'On Friday, October 3, 2003, The Official Buffalo Bills Autographed, Life-Sized Buffalo will be auctioned off during the ESL Animal Scramble Live Auction at the Rochester Riverside Convention Center!'

Marker Eagles-Bills Game Notes [2:33 PM] reports: 'Completed 27 of 43 passes for 296 yards, one TD and zero INTsÖnow has 34,954 career yards and ranks 13th in NFL history after passing Jim Hart and Jim Everett yesterday; is 513 yards away from 12th ranked Jim Kelly.'

Marker Ground game takes flight [1:47 PM] reports: '"This was a must win for us," Lewis said. "This was a playoff game for us."'

Marker Banged-up secondary survives [1:46 PM] reports: 'Though Moulds and Shaw each had eight receptions Sunday, neither was much of a factor until the fourth quarter. By then, the Eagles had built a 16-0 edge. That said, given Sheppard's performance two weeks ago against New England, when he was burned for two touchdowns and picked on repeatedly by quarterback Tom Brady, keeping Bledsoe out of the end zone for so long has to qualify as a successful performance by such a young group.'

Marker Game 3 in a nut shell [1:45 PM] reports: 'DEFENSIVE ZERO: Bills cornerback Nate Clements gave up several big plays, most notably Trash's critical fourth-quarter catch.'

Marker Eagles grind out first victory [1:44 PM] reports: 'The Eagles weren't great yesterday, but they were good, and good is progress after the first two games. The Bills made some timely mistakes, and the Eagles settled for an Akers field goal once too often, but they were better where they needed to be. Their quarterback was better. Their offensive line was better. And in a game they had to have, they didn't make a big mistake.'

Marker 10 questions [1:44 PM] reports: Were the officials from Philly? Not only did the Birds play better yesterday, but they also had two questionable calls go their way. The first came in the first half when Lawyer Milloy was flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct. Milloy barely pushed center Hank Fraley after the whistle but got tagged anyway. The penalty gave the Birds a first down and led to a FG. The second call came late in the third when Takeo Spikes was flagged for holding when replays showed TE Chad Lewis basically ran right into him. That flag also led to a field goal.

Marker Ship righted [1:24 PM]
CNN/SI reports: 'These guys wreaked havoc in the Bills' backfield all day on a variety of blitzes, with Brown forcing a drive-killing Bledsoe fumble as the Bills struggled to get back in the game during the third quarter. By the time the Eagles had built a 16-0 lead through three quarters, a battered defense had held a good offense to five first downs and 134 yards. The Bills made it interesting during clock-bleeding time, but with the game was on the line, Philly made enough plays to win.'

Marker Buffalo mini-backs leave Bills waiting for Willis [1:12 PM]
Niagara Falls Reporter reports: 'You can question plenty of Gilbride's decisions -- calling for a rather slow-developing pass play on Buffalo's first offensive snap was particularly puzzling, and a pair of throws on two third-and-1 situations in the second half didn't fool anyone -- but any coach is only as good as the players he's directing.'

Marker Troubles at home [1:11 PM]
Olean Times Herald reports: 'You know itís going to be a bad day when your teamís best play is an open-field tackle by a security guard on a fan.'

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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
10/02 @ New England Patriots 1:00 pm
10/09 @ Los Angeles Rams 4:25 pm
10/16 San Francisco 49ers 1:00 pm
10/23 @ Miami Dolphins 1:00 pm
10/30 New England Patriots 1:00 pm
11/07 @ Seattle Seahawks 8:30 pm
11/20 @ Cincinnati Bengals 1:00 pm
11/27 Jacksonville Jaguars 1:00 pm
12/4 @ Oakland Raiders 4:05 pm
12/11 Pittsburgh Steelers 1:00 pm
12/18 Cleveland Browns 1:00 pm
12/24 Miami Dolphins 1:00 pm
01/01 @ New York Jets 1:00 pm

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