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Buffalo Bills News - May 6, 2003

Marker Bills switching turf at stadium [1:36 PM]
Business First of Buffalo reports: 'The cost of the new surface was not disclosed but it will be paid for by Erie County under terms the Bills stadium lease. Installation is to be completed by summer.'

Marker In-Depth Research Leads Buffalo Bills to Choose AstroPlay [1:13 PM]
SRI Sports reports: '"The immediate response from our coaches and players was that AstroPlay® was more comfortable to stand/play on," added Donahoe. "And, a key element in the Bills' climate, AstroPlay®'s rubber infill didn't freeze this past winter."'

Marker More Information on AstroPlay [12:17 PM] reports: Here are but a few examples of the hundreds of fields installed: Buffalo Bills - Practice Facility University of Arkansas - War Memorial Stadium Boise State University - Humanitarian Bowl University of Illinois - Memorial Stadium University of Kansas - Memorial Stadium United States Military Academy - Michie Stadium

Marker Bills to tear up 'Turf [11:14 AM]
D and C reports: 'In a poll by the NFL Players Association that asked players which stadium has the best playing surface in the league, Ralph Wilson Stadium was ranked second-to-last (29 out of 31) stadiums.'

Marker Buffalo Bills Choose AstroPlay from SRI Sports [11:13 AM] reports: '"The players and coaches loved it (AstroPlay)," said Buffalo Bills President and General Manager Tom Donahoe. He said the team's two most important factors in choosing a field surface were safety and performance under adverse weather conditions.'

Marker Adams let go after 12 years with Bills [8:57 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"We have opted not to renew Dwight's contract," team President and General Manager Tom Donahoe said in a statement. "We have decided to head into another direction, but we thank Dwight for his years of service in the Bills' organization and wish him the best of luck in the future."'

Marker Polian says Bills made right call with McGahee [5:17 AM]
D and C reports: '“Thurman had played his entire senior season,” Polian said. “In his case, it was the fact he was missing part of a ligament in his knee discovered during the physical exams. It never had an effect on how he played but everyone simply got cold feet. There is some parallel here but I can’t recall anyone injuring himself as badly as McGahee then being drafted as high as he was. Having said that, he certainly warrants the pick.”'

Marker Adams let go after 13 years with the Bills [5:16 AM]
D and C reports: 'He played a key role in Donahoe’s first draft in 2001 that brought aboard five current starters. Adams assumed a lesser role after the arrival of assistant GM Tom Modrak and pro personnel director John Guy.'

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May 5, 2003

Marker Bills shift focus to Henry [9:56 PM]
Fox Sports reports: 'And that's where Henry comes in. It is he -- not McGahee -- who will determine how effective Buffalo will run the ball, and a year ago he was good enough to rush for 1,438 yards and 13 touchdowns and be named to the Pro Bowl. But while that is impressive, this is not: Buffalo ranked 24th in rushing, and Henry was one of the league's most unpredictable backs.'

Marker Lions sign cornerback Watson [9:44 PM]
The Sports Network reports: '"It gives us another guy to compete," head coach Steve Mariucci said. "He is a veteran and he has been a good player in this league. He is a good special teams player. He has some size to him. You like to have corners with some size to them. They don't all have to have size, but it is good to add another one who has that."'

Marker Bills do not renew VP Adams' contract [9:30 PM]
AP reports: 'Adams played a key role in overseeing the Bills' draft as player personnel director under former general manager John Butler. Adams' role and influence was reduced after Butler was dismissed and replaced by current team president-GM Tom Donahoe in January 2001.'

Marker Bills Parting Ways With Adams [8:40 PM]
WGR reports: The Bills will not renew the contract of Vice President of Player Personnel Dwight Adams. The writing was on the wall when he did not make an appearance during the Bills NFL draft.

Adams spent 12 seasons with the Bills. He was known for his little sayings like "He plays like his hair's on fire."

Marker 2003 Buffalo Bills Draft Notes [4:19 PM] reports: For the fifth straight year Buffalo drafted at least one defensive lineman. Including this year's pair (Chris Kelsay & Lauvale Sape), the Bills have selected more defensive linemen (160) than any other position in the team's history: Offensive linemen (132), running back (111), defensive backs (101), linebacker (76).

Marker Sidney likes Williams, Bills' S.B. chances [1:22 PM]
Shout! reports: '"There are other places I could have signed, but I felt comfortable here. I know they got good players here already, but I know what a difference good coaching can do for you."'
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Marker An Iron-like Piece of the Puzzle [10:59 AM] reports: '"They're not that much different than us; there's not much separating Tampa Bay from us," Irons says. "I thought to myself, 'Why can't the Buffalo Bills be here competing for the Super Bowl championship? Why not us?' They started out in training camp doing two-a-days and playing preseason games, just like we did. From that perspective, it gives you a lot of hope and motivation to make it each and every day."'

Marker What's the big rush? [8:57 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'If Marcus Jones wasn't wearing a dark blue practice jersey, you could have mistaken him for one of the Buffalo Bills' coaches. The veteran defensive end would rather be taking instruction than giving it. Instead, he continues his recovery from a pair of surgeries to repair torn cartilage in his knee.'

Marker There's a Super feeling brewing among Bills [8:56 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Fans should hop aboard too, because the potential for this team is real.'

Marker Williams says he's pleased about minicamp [8:56 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'The Bills have three four-day minicamps over three straight weeks, beginning on May 27-30. The other camps will take place on June 3-6 and 10-13.'

Marker All weight aside, Adams a super Bill [5:17 AM]
D and C reports: '“I never look for a pit stop,” he said. “I got picked up late last year, but I’m here now. This is home. I’m going to be here for a long time, and God willing, we’re going to win a lot of rings.”'

Marker Williams pleased with new staff [5:16 AM]
D and C reports: '“I like what I saw,” Williams said. “I liked the meetings; I liked the attitude. We thought that we’d accomplished a bunch. The coaching staff did a really good job on selecting what we needed to install with these young guys. Overall we thought it was very successful.”'

Marker Bills are thinking big things already [5:15 AM]
Niagara Gazette reports: '"We'd be selling ourselves short if we didn't (set our sights on the Super Bowl)," said second-year safety Coy Wire. "We've been blessed in this offseason to get a lot of guys who are not only great players on the field, but are guys of great character. "We know that we have something special here in Buffalo."'

Marker Lions sign cornerback Chris Watson [5:14 AM]
AP reports: 'The 6-foot-1, 188-pound Watson spent the past three seasons with the Buffalo Bills, playing in 44 games with 13 starts. In 2002, he had 44 tackles (37 solo), an interception and 11 pass defenses. He played in 14 games, starting eight.'

May 4, 2003

Marker Coach Williams enthusiastic as Bills mini-camp ends [4:41 PM]
AP reports: '''This is the first time in many years that we've had back-to-back offensive systems,'' the coach said. ''And the defensive system has been evolving since we've been here.'''

Marker Lions ink unrestricted free agent Chris Watson [4:39 PM]
Detroit reports: '"It gives us another guy to compete," head coach Steve Mariucci said. "He is a veteran and he has been a good player in this league. He is a good special teams player. He has some size to him. You like to have corners with some size to them. They don't all have to have size, but it is good to add another one who has that."'

Marker Adams' NFL experience has kind of a nice ring to it [9:15 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"Sam is a special talent that I've always admired and I wanted to get for years," Krumrie said. "Now I come here and I've got an opportunity for him to play for me. He is a true competitor, a fine defensive tackle and I'm excited he's here in Buffalo."'

Marker Bills have had damaged goods become great [9:14 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"Goodbye, Al Dorow!" shouted Cookie, "Hello, Jack Kemp!"'

Marker Harris has rooting interest in winning a job [9:14 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"I grew up watching the Bills and going to all the playoff games," the Buffalo native said during the Bills' minicamp for rookies and selected veterans. "It's a great opportunity and it would be a blessing and a dream come true for me to be out here wearing the red, white and blue and playing for my hometown team."'

Marker Pick of McGahee was worthwhile [9:13 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'If you want to second-guess the McGahee pick, the most legitimate argument would be Donahoe should have taken University of Miami defensive tackle William Joseph, who went No. 25 to the New York Giants.'

Marker No rushing for McGahee [5:28 AM]
D and C reports: 'Many players offered Henry, who gained over 1,400 yards last season, support but also said a team can never have too many stars -- providing the chemistry is right.'

Marker Picking apart 'trade talk' isn't revealing [5:27 AM]
Boston Globe reports: 'Donahoe chose to gamble on youth and medical science. He's betting that the improvements both in surgical procedures and rehabilitation techniques are such that McGahee can come back to nearly full strength after tearing two ligaments in one knee. McGahee has shown thus far that he heals quickly and is willing to do all he can to speed up the process. Now the Bills are in a position to slow it back down and wait for him to catch up. That is why it was a bet worth making.'

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