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Buffalo Bills News - October 31, 2001

Marker Bills, Johnson earn respect but rather have won the game [10:34 AM]
CBS Sportsline reports: After taking a 24-20 lead with 1:30 to play, thanks to a courageous comeback effort by Johnson, the Bills in order: allowed a 72-yard kickoff return, allowed Chargers quarterback Doug Flutie to score the deciding points on a 13-yard run.

Marker CBS Power Rankings - Bills 27 (as 26) [10:29 AM]
CBS Sportsline reports: The past two weeks is a sign of progress. This young team will be a playoff challenger next season.

Marker ESPN Power Rating 25 (was 26) [10:17 AM]
ESPN reports: Really did treat Grudge Bowl like Super Bowl: They lost.

Marker Flutie and Johnson show respect for each others play [9:23 AM]
WGR reports: Some reporters tried to convince Rob Johnson that again Flutie somehow had everything go his way again, as seemed to be the case his entire three years in Buffalo. Johnson disagreed, “He didn’t luck into it. He played well. He’s a competitor. He had an opportunity, we had a chance to sack him, and he spun out of it and made a play. The fact that he got down there by a kickoff and a penalty, that happens. It happened to us against Tennessee."

Even Johnson’s quarterback enemy had respect for his former teammate, “Rob played great.” Flutie said, “He made all the plays with his legs and his arms, and put them right back in a position to tie the ball game at the end. He played his ass off, he played great.” Flutie even went so far as to say the Bills took the game over in the second half, “It felt great early, and then they started moving the ball up and down the field. It felt like they had the ball the whole second half, and we were watching.”

Marker Chargers game meant more than QB bout [9:07 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'After sifting through about 1,100 e-mails since last week, I'd say roughly half were written from people who wanted Doug Flutie as the Bills' quarterback. The other half wanted Flutie, too - anywhere but here.'

Marker Moorman regrets taunting penalty [9:06 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"You get caught up in the game when you're out there," Moorman said. "I was angry that they made it through, I heard him say something to me, and so I just stood up and walked off. I didn't think I should have been called but it happens and you have to move on. Hindsight is 20-20 and it wasn't the right thing. I'd love to have it back. I'd love to have that moment back and if I would, I could, but I can't so I won't. That's the way it goes."'

Marker Bills vs. Chargers Photo Gallery [8:48 AM] reports: This collection has some great pictures of Moulds and Riemersma.

Marker Vanderjagt is trying his foot at kickoffs [7:33 AM]
Indianapolis Star reports: 'But after five games this season with punter Hunter Smith trying to learn the skill, the Colts are again counting on Vanderjagt.'

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October 30, 2001

Marker Vikings Release Former Bills S Henry Jones [8:00 PM]
AP reports: Signed to replace injured Safety Griffith, Griffith is expected to be back after the Bye week.

Marker Bills' rebuilding progressing [1:32 PM]
Olean Times Herald reports: 'It illustrated why Flutie is a perfect fit for San Diego and why Buffalo made the proper choice in keeping Johnson.'

Marker Bills Offense Ranked 10th [12:59 PM] reports: ...based on total yards per game (330.5). The sortable stats also reveal they are 4th in offensive penalties(50) and 9th in time of possession(31:16). The defense is ranked 21st; 13th against the pass and 25th against the run.

Marker Bills fans rain praise upon gutty Johnson [9:07 AM]
San Diego Union Tribune reports: '"Flutie's a magical guy...He's fun to watch. I have nothing against him. Bless him. But I'm not happy he scored."'

Marker Close doesn't count for Bills after loss [9:06 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"It's pretty tough," said veteran fullback Larry Centers. "We feel like we had the game won and in our pockets. To let it slip away is especially frustrating. It's easier when you lose a game by a wide margin than the way we lost it (Sunday). . . . You like to stay away from the shouldas and the couldas and the wouldas, but we had the ball game won and had a lapse in one area, on one play and it cost us."'

Marker Bills take turn off Road to Nowhere [9:05 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'The Bills are at the point in their growth where indiscretion still looks good on them. Raion Hill's post-throw jab at Doug Flutie is indefensible if their record is 4-1. At 1-4, it's a badge of honor.'

Marker Kelly, Talley on Hall list [9:04 AM]
AP reports: 'The Hall of Fame's selection committee said it will trim the list to 14 finalists and disclose those nominees in mid-January.'

Marker Bills #9 in cap room - $11.1 million [8:14 AM]
CNN/SI reports: No truth to the rumor that Doug Flutie and Rob Johnson went out for fish tacos Saturday night.

Marker Let it rest - both QBs are happy now [7:41 AM]
CBS Sportsline reports: San Diego's Doug Flutie was the winning quarterback Sunday, and played a solid game, but the Bills' Rob Johnson enjoyed a strong game for the second consecutive week as well. The Johnson-Flutie matchup lived up the hype. Let's face it -- maybe the best thing for both players was getting them separated. Now it's time to put this Johnson-Flutie talk to rest. Flutie is happy and winning and Johnson is growing every week. It's best for both players. One thing about this game for the Bills: Owner Ralph Wilson now knows what it's like to lose five Super Bowls since he propped up this game with that kind of magnitude.

Marker ESPN Coaching move of the week [7:34 AM]
ESPN reports: Coaching move of the week:
Gregg Williams. The Bills look much better than during their 0-4 start and were game indeed against the Chargers, but Buffalo's special teams betrayed them in a 27-24 loss at San Diego.

Marker Colts' Rhodes ready to run [7:14 AM]
Indianapolis Star reports: 'The Edgerrin James Watch began in earnest on Monday as the Indianapolis Colts returned to work after a three-day weekend. Will he or won't he? Will the NFL's two-time rushing champion be available for Sunday afternoon's game against AFC East rival Buffalo or will a sprained left knee force him to miss his first game as a pro?'

Marker Tagliabue, Jim Kelly, Jim McMahon Are Eligible for Hall of Fame [5:29 AM]
Bloomberg reports: 'Also eligible is Bills owner Ralph Wilson and former linebacker Darryl Talley.'

Marker Johnson displays his grit, talent [5:28 AM]
D and C reports: 'The hope here is that Bills fans -- and that includes all you card-carrying members of the Doug Flutie cult -- finally started to give Rob Johnson his due.'

Marker Time change [5:28 AM]
D and C reports: 'The NFL approved the Buffalo Bills' request to change the time for Sunday's home game against Indianapolis to 1 p.m.'

Marker Flutie-Johnson grudge match a draw [5:27 AM]
Toronto Sun reports: 'Johnson would hate this comparison, but the laid-back 28-year-old actually played like Flutie, 39, albeit without the magic. When plays fell apart, Johnson took off running for first-down yardage. Where have you seen that before? He led his team to two impressive length-of-the-field drives in the final five minutes of the game. Sound familiar?'

October 29, 2001

Marker All right, I've slept on it [9:57 PM]
TBD reports: 'Johnson twice was hit in ways that would have knocked a lesser quarterback out of the game. He hopped on one leg to the locker room, got taped up and shot up, and ten minutes later ran back onto the field. Shades of Kelly and his broken collarbone in the Pittsburgh playoff game. He got hit well out of bounds, slammed his head on the turf, and got up wondering what day it was. Yet he finished the TD drive and led the final drive.'

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.'

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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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