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Buffalo Bills News - December 23, 2003

Marker Scraping bottom [8:58 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'It is worse in some ways than during the Kay Stephenson/Hank Bullough coaching debacles.'

Marker Top coaches aren't found in bargain bin [8:57 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'One week from now, Tom Donahoe will be looking for a new coach. He must convince the owner, Ralph Wilson, that the price of poker has skyrocketed in the NFL.'

Marker Jaworski defends Bledsoe [5:17 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'In Bledsoe, he sees a classic pocket passer who doesn’t have a pocket.'

Marker What gifts should Santa bring Bills? [5:16 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'For Drew Bledsoe, a new mattress and whirlpool. I looked this up: he’s been sacked 205 times in his last 65 starts for 1,346 yards, or the equivalent of 13 1/2 football fields.'

Marker A nice recovery by safety [5:15 AM]
Boston Globe reports: '"I can't wait to see the fans more than anything," Milloy said. "And then afterward, I'll shake my ex-teammates' hands and wish them luck. The fans there, I'm glad that it turned out to where I have a chance to go compete in that stadium once a year. Me coming here had nothing to do with going to an AFC East team, having a chance to play the Patriots. This organization, this team, really made me feel like they wanted me."'

Marker Season-opening flop back in focus [5:14 AM]
Boston Globe reports: 'The Patriots can honestly say they beat themselves that day. "I think almost half of our plays in the first 40 plays were negative plays: sacks, turnovers, penalties, some version of all of those," Belichick said. "Almost half the time we were going in reverse instead of going forward. That's not what we're looking for. We gave up 50-yard completions, pass-interference penalties, penalties in the kicking game, you name it. You can take your pick."'

Marker Pats won't forget past [5:13 AM]
Boston Herald reports: 'And the current (hapless) state of the Bills? Forget about it. ``Look, I don't care about that. I don't care what happened last week,'' said Belichick, referring to the Bills' 20-3 defeat to Miami. ``The (Bills) took the Titans right down to the wire (in a 28-26 loss two weeks ago). It came down to the last play. They had several other big wins this year, none bigger than ours. It's not how they match up against somebody else - it's how they match up against us. The last time they matched up pretty well. We're going to have to play them more competitively than we did the last time - that's where it starts.'''

Marker Medfield trades Bledsoe for Schilling [5:12 AM]
Metro West Daily News reports: '"I'm delighted there will be somebody there," said Selectman Ann Thompson, who was appreciative of Bledsoe's devotion to helping local schools with fund-raising during his three-year stay in Medfield. "He'd go to local restaurants around town, and I hope Curt Schilling brings the same kind of friendliness."'

Marker Bills' ills start at the top [5:11 AM]
Providence Journal reports: 'Bills president and general manager Tom Donahoe (a.k.a. The Teflon Donahoe) has carved a swath of miscalculation and mediocrity in his three years in Buffalo.'

Marker Inside slant [5:10 AM]
CBS Sportsline reports: 'However, regardless of what Donahoe says on the record, there seems to be little doubt that Williams' swan song will come at Gillette Stadium.'

Marker Strategy and personnel [5:09 AM]
CBS Sportsline reports: 'In a season that has been filled with bad performances, this ranks as one of Drew Bledsoe's worst, not only this year but of his career.'

Marker Notes, quotes, anecdotes [5:08 AM]
CBS Sportsline reports: 'WR Eric Moulds continues to be a non-factor for the Bills passing game. Hampered by a painful groin injury since Week 5, Moulds hasn't had a 100-yard receiving games since and he has scored just one TD all year. The Dolphins held him to three catches for 20 yards.'

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December 22, 2003

Marker Bill Belichick Press Transcript - 12/22 [5:15 PM] reports: 'Q: What was it that made it a 31-point difference between the two teams in the last game?
BB: A lot good plays by one team and turnovers by another. Penalties, turnovers, negative plays. I think almost half of our plays in the first 40 plays almost half of them were negative plays, sacks, turnovers, penalties, some version of all of those. Almost half the time we were going in reverse instead of going forward. That is not what we are looking for. We gave up 50-yard completions, pass interference penalties, penalties in the kicking game, you name it, you can take your pick.'

Marker Final Home Game For Miller Is A Busy One [5:13 PM] reports: '4:15 p.m. - Van begins to sign autographs for anyone who wants one. He stays and signs nearly an hour, with a smile on his face the entire time. Shortly after, Van left Ralph Wilson Stadium and rode home for the last time as the "Voice of the Bills." He probably left with a heavy heart but probably not as heavy as those of the fans that will forever cherish his voice, his commitment, and his dedication.'

Marker Even from a great seat, Bills looked horrid [2:43 PM]
Niagara Falls Reporter reports: 'BILLS MVP: Let's be honest here. No one wearing white, blue and red came close to earning this against Miami. But it would belong to Van Miller under any circumstances.'

Marker Schilling buys Drew's old digs [1:23 PM]
AP reports: 'The property has been on the market since August 2002, after Bledsoe was traded to the Buffalo Bills. It was originally listed for nearly $9 million, but by the fall the price had dropped to $6.5 million. Schilling said he paid "much less" than $6.5 million but declined to give the final sale price.'

Marker Wilson has `sinking feeling' about underachieving Bills [1:22 PM]
AP reports: '''When you start the season and have high expectations and then things don't turn out the way you'd hoped, you have a sinking feeling,'' Wilson said, following Buffalo's dreadful performance in closing out its home schedule with a 20-3 loss to Miami on Sunday.'

Marker Bills’ effort against Dolphins dismal [12:12 PM]
Olean Times Herald reports: 'Even Williams, normally defensive of his players, wouldn’t make excuses for Bledsoe’s struggling performance. “Ask him,” he said, “I don’t know ... it was a tough day.”'

Marker Dolphins’ win doesn’t guarantee playoffs [12:11 PM]
Olean Times Herald reports: 'This has been a maddening season for the Dolphins. On one hand, they won a remarkable six of eight road games and had one of the NFL’s top defenses. On the other hand, they’ve lost four of their seven home games — including an opening-day loss to Houston that looms more devastating each week.'

Marker Bledsoe and offense focus of blame as Bills miss playoffs fourth straight year [12:10 PM]
Dunkirk Observer reports: 'Mounting a comeback from a 17-point deficit is not unattainable in the NFL, but when you look at the Bills' offensive statistics, one could see that after the Buckley gift, it was all over in Buffalo. And possibly even for Bledsoe's time here, too.'

Marker Not the way they Drew it up [9:05 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"This is probably one of the worst games I've seen him play, but it's a team game and we have to help him," said receiver Eric Moulds.'

Marker Play-calling draws ire of players [9:04 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"Their offensive coordinator (Norv Turner) understood the way the game was being played," Fletcher said with a wink. "They didn't have to put the ball in the hands of their quarterback and pass the ball. With the wind conditions, Norv Turner did an excellent job of understanding the way to go in this ball game was just run the football and let the defense do what they are going to do. It would have been great if we would have understood that around here this week."'

Marker Was that home swan song for Winfield and Brown? [9:03 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"I'm just being honest. I don't know it they want to keep me here. They have Nate (Clements) and he's a good corner and his contract is coming up (after the 2005 season). Maybe they will or maybe they won't. We'll just have to wait and see."'

Marker Dolphins deliver rare December win [9:02 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'The Dolphins caught the Bills at the right time. Miami needed assistance, and that's just what Buffalo provided.'

Marker QB scenario could be deja vu all over again [9:01 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'I say cut Bledsoe and move on. They can't win with this guy. He has failed to produce an offensive TD in six games this season. In two games against Miami, he threw for 212 total yards with zero TD passes, three interceptions and 10 sacks.'

Marker Heads or tails, Williams' coaching ineptness continues [9:00 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Go ahead. Flip the coin again. It's going to come up heads. Williams'. And Gilbride's.'

Marker Fletcher flabbergasted at missing Pro Bowl [8:59 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"It was a personal battle this weekend for me," Fletcher said after the Bills' 20-3 loss to the Dolphins Sunday. "I felt very slighted. Obviously, I look across the sideline and see their Pro Bowl middle linebacker. It was a battle between him versus me from my standpoint. Each and every week, I outplay each middle linebacker that I go against so it was definitely personal."'

Marker Monday Billboard [8:58 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Best Sign: "All I want for Christmas is some offense."'

Marker Grading the Bills [8:57 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Williams' tenure at home comes to a sorry end. Ditto for Gilbride. Season finale in N.E. may be even worse.'

Marker Grading the Dolphins [8:56 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'It was jailbreak city for Jason Taylor & D-linemen. Buckley took gift interception to the house.'

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