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Buffalo Bills News - December 28, 2003

Marker Belichick downplays home-field edge [11:08 AM]
Portland Press Herald reports: 'HOW GOOD is the Patriots' defense these days? Well, over the last six home games, they are allowing an average of 3.7 points per game. Overall, they have allowed 14.9 points per game, best in franchise history.'

Marker A curtain call and a bravo for a job so very well done [11:07 AM]
Portland Press Herald reports: '"He was like, driven, today," said Fauria. "Out of everyone in that first game, he probably took it the hardest. He wasn't talking much before the game."'

Marker Right back at ya, Bills [11:05 AM]
Nashua Telegraph reports: 'No muss, no fuss in this one as the Patriots avenged a 31-0 opening day loss to the Bills while ending the regular season with an historic 12-game winning streak. A season that began like a dream come true for old friend Drew Bledsoe ended in a nightmare, as he went just 12-for-29 for 83 yards, was sacked three times and had an interception and fumble.'

Marker Poised to go three and out [9:17 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '...failed to score a touchdown in seven of 16 games.'

Marker Brown's absence from season finale an unsolved mystery [9:16 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Brown and offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride have not seen eye-to-eye this season, and according to a source, Brown had a confrontation with Gilbride this week.'

Marker Final score magnifies awful regression [9:15 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"That's the kind of coach they have," Fletcher said. "Sure, he wanted to play the psychological game where they can preserve their shutout."'

Marker Struggles at QB, O-line show Bills need more than just a coach [9:14 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'This does not speak very well of the endurance of the Bills' most important young linemen. Maybe it isn't such a great idea to have Jennings weighing 325 pounds and Williams 370. Most of their injuries had to do with their legs.'

Marker QB Brown gets to show his stuff [9:13 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"I'm in a difficult situation here because there's only one quarterback that can play," said Brown. "In order for me to go in there, a good situation isn't happening for the team. Am I happy to get in there? Under the circumstances, it was tough but I was pleased that I was able to go out and have a little bit of success and move the team a little bit. But it's not an easy situation."'

Marker Sunday Billboard [9:12 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '• Best Sign: "Hey Drew, Not Even a Lawyer Can Help U."'

Marker Newfane man named state's No. 1 Bills fan [9:11 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"The Buffalo Bills have been on a mission, searching for the best Bills fans across America," the Web site states. "The fans who are selected are considered to be some of the best the Buffalo Bills nation has to offer - the MVP of the Bills' 12th man."'

Marker Wayward Bills season fumbles to a close [8:20 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: '“They were playing for home-field advantage so they were trying to win the game, but you could tell they wanted a little revenge,” said Moulds.'

Marker Brown's absence latest omen Williams is toast [8:18 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'Williams had a chance to make his case, and instead made like a turtle. Once again, the man retreated into his shell. How typical. How sad.'

Marker Some Bills draft priorities [8:18 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'If there were a big center who could start immediately and anchor the offensive line for a decade, he’d be a decent top pick.'

Marker Thank Gilbride for final bumble [8:17 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'But in a year when the offensive performance of this Buffalo team brought back bleak memories of the darkest period in franchise history — the back-to-back 2-14 seasons of 1984 and ‘85 — the 31-0 finale wasn’t quite perfect enough. Nope, it took offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride to make it fool-proof perfect.'

Marker Buffalo Bills report card [8:16 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'Kevin Gilbride’s offense didn’t produce a TD for the seventh time this season, Jerry Gray’s defense allowed its second-most points, and generally speaking, Gregg Williams’ players quit on him. Let’s ring out the old. Grade is “G” (for gone).'

Marker Pats show power [8:15 AM]
Toronto Sun reports: 'The first time the Bills touched the ball, Bledsoe was intercepted, the beginning of yet another long afternoon.'

Marker Buffalo's offence is invisible [8:15 AM]
Toronto Sun reports: '"You don't get rid of guys like Peerless Price and Jay Riemersma and myself and expect to be productive," said fullback Larry Centers, who was released by the Bills in the off-season and signed by the Patriots.'

Marker Razor sharp [8:14 AM]
Boston Globe reports: 'The Patriots, who have allowed 22 points in their last six home games, fed off the emotion of the embarrassing first-week loss all season. Some players were upset with what they perceived to be cocky comments by the Bills after that win, and they were waiting to gain revenge.'

Marker Izzo picks perfect time for big play [8:13 AM]
Boston Globe reports: '"It meant a lot," said Izzo. "I know all 53 guys on this team wanted to keep that zero on that scoreboard. It was nice to be able to make the play and contribute to the shutout. But you've got to give credit to everyone in this locker room because it wasn't just one play. It was 60 minutes of football. I feel really happy that we were able to get it done for the defense."'

Marker Bledsoe left woozy after season-ending KO [8:12 AM]
Boston Globe reports: 'For Bledsoe, it was a sad end to what has become the sorriest season of his career, one marked by not only frustration and failure but, for the first time, a measure of self-doubt. He has admitted that his internal clock has gone awry, the one that tells him how much time he has to throw the ball and when to release it.'

Marker Milloy: Not a happy return [8:11 AM]
Boston Globe reports: '"During the week I didn't really think about it," the former Patriots defensive captain said of his first return to Foxborough since being released in September and landing in Buffalo. "But on the way here it really did start to get weird for me. As we got close to the stadium I had to hold back the emotions. I didn't want my teammates to see me like that. It was the final step of closure. I didn't get a chance to say goodbye to the fans before, but now it's over."'

Marker Brady again manages to win [8:11 AM]
Boston Globe reports: 'Brady capped off that year with four first-half touchdown passes in a game we really have no choice but to label the Payback Bowl. Who among us was unaware that when the Patriots traveled to Buffalo Sept. 7 for the season opener, that the Bills had manhandled them by -- is this coincidence, or what? -- a score of 31-0? There really was no need for Belichick to go into his Rockne mode, whatever that might be (Actually, I'd pay pretty good money to hear that speech). "I don't think anybody was particularly proud of that opening game," Belichick said.'

Marker This `nothing' was something [8:10 AM]
Boston Globe reports: 'Here is the unvarnished truth: Your Patriots are the best team in football.'

Marker Trying this team's giant status on for size [8:09 AM]
Boston Globe reports: 'We are the joke no more. We are the Detroit Red Wings. We are the Los Angeles Lakers. We are the (gulp) New York Yankees.'

Marker Coordinating job interviews [8:08 AM]
Boston Globe reports: 'Drew Bledsoe was sacked 49 times for the season, five fewer than last season and 17 more than the Patriots' Tom Brady.'

Marker Patriots winning streak [8:07 AM]
Boston Globe reports: 'Drew Bledsoe completed just 12 of 29 passes for 83 yards with 1 interception for the Bills.'

Marker Pats exact revenge on Bills in 31-0 rout [8:06 AM]
Boston Herald reports: '``The road to the Super Bowl goes through Foxboro,'' defensive lineman Richard Seymour [news] said. ``Everyone knows that.'''

Marker Bruschi busts Bledsoe, Bills [8:06 AM]
Boston Herald reports: '``It was fluttering up there kind of like a Christmas gift from him,'' Vrabel said. ``But it was a big play.'''

Marker Givens caps season with another gem [8:05 AM]
Boston Herald reports: '``When we are spread out like that with four or five guys to throw to, that puts the defense back on its heels a little bit. It makes the offense more effective in the fact that guys are out there getting open and any pass play can go to a different guy.'''

Marker Brady pains Buffalo [8:04 AM]
Boston Herald reports: '``(Offensive coordinator) Charlie Weis decided early on that he wanted to spread (the receivers) out and see if they could cover all our guys. . . . We took advantage of the fact that we saw their coverages, our guys knew the coverages, and our guys knew how they were going to get open in those routes.'''

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09/11 @ Baltimore Ravens 1:00 pm
09/15 New York Jets 8:25 pm
09/25 Arizona Cardinals 1:00 pm
10/02 @ New England Patriots 1:00 pm
10/09 @ Los Angeles Rams 4:25 pm
10/16 San Francisco 49ers 1:00 pm
10/23 @ Miami Dolphins 1:00 pm
10/30 New England Patriots 1:00 pm
11/07 @ Seattle Seahawks 8:30 pm
11/20 @ Cincinnati Bengals 1:00 pm
11/27 Jacksonville Jaguars 1:00 pm
12/4 @ Oakland Raiders 4:05 pm
12/11 Pittsburgh Steelers 1:00 pm
12/18 Cleveland Browns 1:00 pm
12/24 Miami Dolphins 1:00 pm
01/01 @ New York Jets 1:00 pm

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