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Buffalo Bills News - December 10, 2001

Marker Bills rally to down Panthers [9:41 AM] reports: On the day where the Bills honored their former coach who taught a never-say-die attitude to his players, the current Bills pulled off a rally from an 18-point deficit to grab their second win of the season. Buffalo, who trailed 24-6 late in the second quarter, pulled out a 25-24 win over the Carolina Panthers in front of 44,549 fans and chilly conditions at Ralph Wilson Stadium.

Marker Comeback a painkiller for Bills [9:15 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Finally. After six straight defeats . . . after 393 days without a win at home . . . the Bills had reason to smile in their locker room in Ralph Wilson Stadium.'

Marker Henry runs at chance to receive [9:14 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"I got a chance to run the ball and catch it out of the backfield. Those are the things I want to get more of a chance to do."'

Marker Things could be finer for Carolina [9:13 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"I'm really tired of answering the same questions every week after games," Steussie said.'

Marker Sheppard's hot seat cools off - for now [9:04 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'In this season of transition, the Bills changed from a team that makes you want to shout to a team that makes you want to scream.'

Marker Win sits well in defense's stomach [9:02 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"We rose up to the occasion, unlike the Miami game where we had some failure in the fourth quarter when the game was in our hands. This time, we sealed the deal."'

Marker Homecoming sweet for Hall of Famer Levy [9:01 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'As for the state of the team he led to more wins than any coach in franchise history, Levy said he feels the fans' pain.'

Marker Monday billboard [9:00 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Player of the Game: Van Pelt and Spoon played big, but rookie running back Travis Henry rushed for over 100 yards for the second time.'

Marker Rare big defensive play leads to rarer Bills win [8:51 AM]
Niagara Falls Reporter reports: 'It was the sort of play the Buffalo Bills made far too infrequently through their first 11 games. And it launched them to their second win of the season. With Carolina ahead by 11 points with 5:50 left in the third quarter and facing a second-and-2 at their own 38-yard line, Bills cornerback Nate Clements deflected Panther quarterback Chris Weinke's pass away from intended receiver Donald Hayes and into the arms of rookie middle linebacker Brandon Spoon. "It was just a normal zone coverage," Spoon said. "Nate (Clements) did a great job and tipped the ball. I just caught it and took off. My teammates did a great job of clearing it out for me." Spoon finished his 44-yard jaunt to the end zone by cartwheeling past the final Carolina tackler. Travis Henry dove in from a yard out midway through the fourth quarter to complete Buffalo's rally from an 18-point first-half deficit. When Alex Van Pelt's third-down completion to Jay Riemersma with two minutes left sealed Buffalo's 25-24 win, the Bills were able to leave the field at Ralph Wilson Stadium to cheers, rather than boos or indifference.'

Marker Bills break losing skid [5:05 AM]
D and C reports: '"It was a good win," Williams said. "Any win is a good win."'

Marker A good win, period [5:04 AM]
D and C reports: '"Those same mistakes that we've been trying to correct for weeks, we'll see some of those again when we watch the film, but everything seems a lot smoother when you win one," tight end Jay Riemersma said as a smile crept across his face.'

Marker Kiss high draft pick goodbye [5:03 AM]
D and C reports: 'Still, a team works hard at being as lousy as the Bills and to throw away five months of mistake-making just to be 2-10 seems like such a waste.'

Marker Defense finally comes up big [5:02 AM]
D and C reports: 'Buffalo shut out the Panthers in the second half and held them to 231 total yards. Without that effort -- accomplished by the way without the help of Pat Williams. who was hurt on the third play of the day -- the Bills would not have won.'

Marker Levy can feel Williams' pain [5:01 AM]
D and C reports: '"Two things happen when you get older," said Levy, setting up one of his trademark jokes. "You forget things, and I can't remember what the other thing was."'

Marker Bills report card [5:00 AM]
D and C reports: 'Rob Johnson even braved it by watching from the sideline.'

Marker `Not very dynamic' Panthers drop to a new low in Buffalo [4:55 AM]
Charlotte Observer reports: '"The problem here is that we haven't solved the problem," coach George Seifert said. "And it's been an ongoing problem."'

Marker Buffalo's 1st-half drive changes game for Panthers [4:54 AM]
Charlotte Observer reports: '"I'm so tired," Evans said. "You can't get used to losing. Each and every week it gets tougher and tougher to come in this locker room after the game and smile."'

Marker Panthers in a word: Unforgettable [4:53 AM]
Charlotte Observer reports: 'Carolina is so good at being bad.'

Marker Game Analysis [4:52 AM]
Charlotte Observer reports: 'Worst hospitality: Bills fans - One unidentified Panthers' fan got a faceful of milk from a Bills fan, and then the move was replayed on the scoreboard.'

Marker Former Tar Heels LB keys comeback [4:51 AM]
Charlotte Observer reports: 'He [Marv Levy] said it was only the second time he'd seen a game in Ralph Wilson Stadium since he retired following the 1997 season.'

Marker Panthers lose another one [4:50 AM]
Winston Salem Journal reports: '"We gave them life when we should have just finished them off," Buckner said. "So now they're over in their locker room all happy, and we're here left here in our locker room to try and explain the same thing that we've been trying to explain for the last 12 weeks in a row."'

Marker Second-quarter failure haunts Panthers [4:49 AM]
Winston Salem Journal reports: 'That was ridiculous to let a team go 70 yards in 30-something seconds. That's uncalled for. We are too good for that. I don't care what anybody says. An NFL team is too good to let another team do that. He should have been mad. He should have slapped all of us to get us right."'

Marker Panthers Notebook [4:48 AM]
Winston Salem Journal reports: 'Brandon Spoon, the rookie linebacker with the Bills who played in college at North Carolina and is a native of Burlington, made one of the key plays of the game yesterday when he intercepted a Weinke pass in the third quarter and returned it 44 yards for a touchdown. It was the first interception of Spoon's young NFL career and he made sort of a nifty move to dive into the end zone for the touchdown, avoiding a would-be Carolina tackler.'

Marker Panthers can't find a way to win [4:47 AM]
Gaston Gazette reports: 'The Carolina Panthers proved Sunday that no lead is too big for their defense.'

Marker Defense isn't getting it done [4:46 AM]
Gaston Gazette reports: 'But the momentum of the game turned when Alex Van Pelt led his team 70 yards on four plays to cut Carolina’s lead to 24-13. Bills third-year wide receiver Peerless Price beat double coverage by cornerback Doug Evans and free safety Deon Grant to score with one second left in the half.'

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December 9, 2001

Marker Bills 25, Panthers 24 [6:47 PM]
AP reports: '"We could have laid down and said, 'We can't come back from this.' It's the Bills' tradition to circle the wagons and come back."'

Marker Buffalo 25, Carolina 24 [6:47 PM]
Sportsticker reports: 'The Bills (2-10) won for the first time in seven home games this season and snapped a six-game losing streak overall.'

Marker Panthers, Bills see a golden opportunity [9:39 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'The last time the Bills lost all eight home games was back in 1984, when they were 1-12 en route to a 2-14 finish under coach Kay Stephenson.'

Marker A positive air [9:38 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'The 43-year-old Williams had only streaks of gray when he was hired in February. Now his head is all shades of gray.'

Marker Now it's time to grade the staff [9:37 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'What the remaining six games will involve is the judging of Williams' staff.'

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09/07 @ Chicago Bears 1:00 pm
09/14 Miami Dolphins 1:00 pm
09/21 San Diego Chargers 1:00 pm
09/28 @ Houston Texans 1:00 pm
10/05 @ Detroit Lions 1:00 pm
10/12 New England Patriots 1:00 pm
10/19 Minnesota Vikings 1:00 pm
10/26 @ New York Jets 1:00 pm
11/09 Kansas City Chiefs 1:00 pm
11/13 @ Miami Dolphins 8:25 pm
11/23 New York Jets 1:00 pm
11/30 Cleveland Browns 1:00 pm
12/07 @ Denver Broncos 4:05 pm
12/14 Green Bay Packers 1:00 pm
12/21 @ Oakland Raiders 4:25 pm
12/28 @ New England Patriots 1:00 pm

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