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Buffalo Bills News - October 29, 2001

Marker Johnson gains respect in Bills loss [7:56 PM]
AP reports: 'Rarely does a loss provide a rallying point. But it's enough for a rebuilding Bills team (1-5) that's trying to find its identity after getting off to its worst start in 15 years.'

NOTE: The NFL approved the Bills' request to change the time for this Sunday's home game against Indianapolis to 1 p.m. It was originally scheduled for 4:15 p.m.

Marker Mike Riley post-game quotes [5:25 PM] reports: "We got after him early, but he didn't let that ruin his day. He came out and played tough and made a lot of good throws. Because of him and the receivers they've got, it came down to a shootout. After they got back in it, it was hard for both sides I think."

Marker Marcellus Wiley post-game quotes [5:24 PM] reports: "We're happy with our situation and I hope they are. His (Johnson's) last two weeks have been impressive. He started slow. He's a great talent. He's an unreal talent. All he needed was experience and a little bitterness to get out of his life. Right now he can't be bitter at anything."

Marker Quite a weekend that falls just short [5:23 PM] reports: Johnson had better statistics than Flutie, but threw the interception that could have ended Buffalo's afternoon and seemingly would deflate the Bills. However, Johnson's resolve and play showed why the Bills wanted to make him the starter, and he came back to throw a 61-yard strike to Peerless Price to bring Buffalo right back in it.

Marker NFL switches Bills-Colts game to 1 p.m. start [4:04 PM]
AP reports: 'The game was originally set for 4:15 p.m. The Bills believe the earlier time is better suited for their out-of-town fans to travel to the game.'

Marker Tagliabue, Kelly among nominees for Pro Football Hall of Fame [4:01 PM]
Sportsticker reports: 'Kelly, fellow quarterbacks Bernie Kosar and Jim McMahon, tight end Keith Jackson, offensive linemen Ray Donaldson and Guy McIntyre, defensive linemen Ray Childress and Sean Jones, linebackers Darryl Talley and Clay Matthews and kicker Nick Lowery are former players eligible for the first time.'

Marker Kickoff times changed for three NFL games [3:05 PM] reports: The kickoff times for three November NFL games have been changed, the league announced. The changes are to accommodate CBS and FOX broadcast patterns.

11/04 Cleveland at Chicago 4:15 -> 1:00 CBS
11/04 Indianapolis at Buffalo 1:00 -> 4:15 CBS
11/18 Chicago at Tampa Bay 4:15 -> 1:00 FOX

Marker Bills' Johnson could be Texans' QB in 2002 [2:06 PM]
The Sporting News reports: Take Pompei's comments for what they are worth.....Of course, Jake Plummer, Drew Bledsoe, Akili Smith or Charlie Batch also could be starting for the Texans next season. Johnson, if exposed by the Bills, would be enticing because Texans offensive coordinator Chris Palmer had success with him as coordinator in Jacksonville and always has held him in high regard...

Marker Flutie shows knack for last minute win [2:01 PM]
Olean Times Herald reports: '"As tough as it is to lose a ballgame like this at the end," Williams said, "I thought our guys grew up today. But we're still our own worst opponent."'

Marker It's a Bills deja vu all over again as victory slips away [1:45 PM]
Niagara Falls Reporter reports: 'Johnson had to work for every point and almost every yard the Bills got. With Buffalo's running game stuck in neutral and its offensive line alternately missing blocks and getting caught holding, he had to overcome obstacles emanating from both huddles. Flutie got a huge break late in the third quarter, when he was ruled down at the 1-yard line on Bryce Fisher's sack, which clearly put both his knees and the ball in the end zone. Referee Tony Corrente's mysterious decision (how does one possess "forward progress" when tackled while going backward?) kept the Chargers up by three and prevented a huge momentum shift.'

Marker Johnson gets respect [1:43 PM]
Olean Times Herald reports: '"I thought Rob played better than Flutie today," he maintained, adding, "besides the last play that Doug made." Of course, to Flutie fans, that's like saying the Titanic had a marvelous voyage...except for the iceberg.'

Marker San Diego beats Bills 27-24 [10:25 AM]
Niagara Falls Reporter reports: At worst, Rob Johnson battled Doug Flutie to a draw in Sunday's quarterback derby at Qualcomm Stadium. Unfortunately for Johnson and the rest of the Buffalo Bills, most of the rest of the key plays in San Diego's 27-24 win were made by men wearing Chargers uniforms. "This is right up there with the Tennessee game -- it hurts that much," Johnson said. "This game was huge for us. We were playing a lot of our old teammates, with Mr. Butler there and his scouting department -- it's Bills West."

Marker Former Bills QB saves Chargers in fourth-quarter [10:24 AM]
North County Times reports: 'Bills owner Ralph Wilson: If this really was his Super Bowl, at least he's used to losing them.'

Marker Conway the man, at least this week [10:22 AM]
North County Times reports: 'Sunday was Conway's to carry the load. In every department, it was a splendid day for the USC graduate. His team won, while Buffalo's Rob Johnson ---- his quarterback for two years with the Trojans ---- had a remarkable individual performance in defeat. "Rob's a friend of mine," Conway said. "He did a great job. I'm happy for him."'

Marker Chargers' Wiley feeling like prom king [10:21 AM]
North County Times reports: '"But it was just special to see those guys. To see your friends, your homeboys ---- people you used to be with for four years now, and then you get a chance to go against them. It was really great."'

Marker Bills' Johnson gives gutsy effort, but it's not enough [10:20 AM]
North County Times reports: 'Whatever perceptions lingered about Johnson ---- a laid-back Southern California boy ---- as too soft and injury-prone for the NFL should have been left on the Qualcomm Stadium turf Sunday, right next to the quarterback's sweat and blood.'

Marker QBs make both teams look good [10:13 AM]
North County Times reports: 'While Buffalo and the Chargers played a corker of a football game here Sunday, nothing was decided between the two quarterbacks. If anything, it reinforced the decisions that each club made prior to the season. Buffalo was correct in keeping Rob Johnson. The Chargers are ecstatic that Doug Flutie is running the show here.'

Marker Seau won't shuffle off against Buffalo [10:12 AM]
North County Times reports: 'Seau was on his game, collecting seven tackles, a sack and a pass defensed. He did much of it limping around like a guy with a rock in his shoe.'

Marker Flutie finds a way to beat Bills [9:15 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Shaking off a foot injury and the effects of some vicious tackles, Johnson led Buffalo from a 10-point deficit to a 24-20 lead with 1:30 to play. Poor special teams play, a foolish penalty, Flutie and a blocked field goal ruined his big day.'

Marker Bills' pain is super-sized [9:14 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'It turns out Ralph Wilson called it last spring. Sunday's Buffalo Bills-San Diego Chargers game WAS like a Super Bowl. In fact, it was better than most Super Bowls. And it ended just like a Super Bowl for the Bills: It was a heartbreaker.'

Marker Special teams beat again [9:13 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'First, it was Home Run Throwback. Now this. Oh, those Buffalo Bills' special teams.'

Marker Johnson's valiant effort was not in vain [9:13 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"It's very disheartening," Johnson said. "Our guys battled. It seems ever since I've been here, the Bills really battle. Everyone fights. Nobody gives up. We didn't start off too well, but then we stepped it up. We pretty much dominated the rest of the game and unfortunately we didn't win. "If we play that way every game, you have to think we'll win a lot of games," he said. "And I think we will. We're coming together as a team."'

Marker Wilson, Butler take same side of this story [9:12 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Ralph Wilson and John Butler may not have much to say to each other, but they agreed on one thing Sunday - Sunday's contest between the Buffalo Bills and San Diego Chargers was one for the ages.'

Marker Monday Billboard [9:11 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Player of the Game: Rob Johnson and Flutie. After all the buildup, it's only fitting that the two bitter rivals share it.'

Marker Divided loyalties [9:10 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"I like Doug Flutie. I think they should have kept him," said Chris Saville, 45, of Orchard Park. "But I'm rooting for Buffalo."'

Marker Flutie pays old Bills [9:09 AM]
San Diego Union Tribune reports: 'And what was he thinking when the Bills took a 24-20 lead on Travis Henry's 3-yard run with 90 seconds to play? "I was just thinking about Flutie," Wiley said. "That's why we got him here. That's why we're fortunate. That's the kind of situation he lives for. He makes people better all around him."'

Marker Bench warmers get hot when it counts [9:08 AM]
San Diego Union Tribune reports: 'Sure, Doug Flutie scored the winning touchdown with 70 seconds remaining, but he was in that position only because of a 72-yard kickoff return seconds earlier by Ronney Jenkins. And that touchdown wouldn't have been enough to ward off an overtime period were it not for an even more unlikely hero than Jenkins -- Ed Ellis.'

Marker Bolts believers in Flutie Tales [9:07 AM]
San Diego Union Tribune reports: 'Of course, Butler and Wilson did not play. Flutie and Johnson did. And they did not disappoint. Both played well, played with heart. If you want to say Johnson, who had the stronger numbers, played better, go ahead. The scoreboard says Flutie won.'

Marker Johnson had super day running, passing [9:06 AM]
San Diego Union Tribune reports: 'This was the irony of the afternoon for Johnson. As strongly as he played in what became a 27-24 San Diego triumph, he is aware that what he did is not apt to silence those in Buffalo, and they are many, who contend that the team acted unwisely when it determined to retain him rather than Flutie. "But I don't care," Johnson said. You don't care? "It's been three years," he said.'

Marker Buffalo's Moorman could just kick self [9:04 AM]
San Diego Union Tribune reports: 'Both kickers in yesterday's Chargers-Bills game made tackles on kickoffs. San Diego's Wade Richey got a cheer. Buffalo's Brian Moorman got a penalty flag.'

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09/13 Indianapolis Colts 1:00 pm
09/20 New England Patriots 1:00 pm
09/27 @ Miami Dolphins 4:25 pm
10/04 New York Giants 1:00 pm
10/11 @ Tennessee Titans 1:00 pm
10/18 Cincinnati Bengals 1:00 pm
10/25 @ Jacksonville Jaguars 9:30 am
11/08 Miami Dolphins 1:00 pm
11/12 @ New York Jets 8:25 pm
11/23 @ New England Patriots 8:30 pm
11/29 @ Kansas City Chiefs 1:00 pm
12/6 Houston Texans 1:00 pm
12/13 @ Philadelphia Eagles 1:00 pm
12/20 @ Washington Redskins 1:00 pm
12/27 Dallas Cowboys 1:00 pm
01/03 New York Jets 1:00 pm

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