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Buffalo Bills News - December 18, 2014

Marker Bills’ offensive line has room for improvement [1:59 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '“We know what kind of O-line we are,” left guard Kraig Urbik said. “We’ve felt we’ve been playing well for the most part all year. But, as in anything, crap rolls downhill. If the offense doesn’t do well, then the O-line gets all the blame. If the offense does well, then the playmakers get all the credit. We understand what it is, we let it brush off our shoulders, and every week we just try to get better.”'

Marker Bills willing to forgive, and it’s paying off [1:58 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '“There’s a lot of guys in this room that people gave up on or didn’t even look at,” Dareus said. “The Bills gave them a second chance, a place where they can hone their skills and become somebody in the league and not just give up on them. It really means a lot.”'

Marker Spiller limited, but could be activated for Sunday [1:57 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '“He looked good,” coach Doug Marrone said. “But he’s still working his way back into the football part of it.”'

Marker Bills’ Spiller inches slowly toward return [1:56 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: '“This is the most I’ve ever missed,” he said. “I don’t have any benchmarks, but nobody is going to put higher expectations on myself than me. Conditioning will be different because I haven’t played in two months so I won’t be in top-notch football shape, but I think if I’m able to go, I can perform at a high level.”'

Marker What Doug Marrone, Buffalo Bills players are saying about avoiding letdown against Oakland Raiders [1:55 AM]
Syracuse Post-Standard reports: '"I feel like a lot of (outside) people are looking passed Oakland like they're an easy team. This is the NFL. You see it happen when they played Kansas City (in Week 12). I think Kansas City was a large favorite in that game and it's just who comes to show up that day. For us, our biggest goal this week is how focused can we be? Knowing that we had two good games, how can we keep continuing having these great games for our secondary?'

Marker Buffalo Bills have a 14 percent chance of making AFC playoffs [1:54 AM]
Syracuse Post-Standard reports: 'The biggest factors working against the Bills are the fact that they don't hold the tiebreaker over any of the other teams fighting for the wild card spot and that they have to play on the road against the New England Patriots in Week 17.'

Marker C.J. Spiller limited on Wednesday, not yet on active roster [1:53 AM]
Syracuse Post-Standard reports: '"I'm not going to sit up here and say he didn't look good," Marrone said. "He looked good but he's still working his way back into the football part of it."'

Marker Raiders' Khalil Mack almost was a Buffalo Bill [1:52 AM]
Contra Costa Times reports: 'At the time, Watkins said he wasn't sure where he was going. The Raiders were even a possibility, he said. "I thought it was possible, but you never know going through that whole process," Watkins said. "I never really had an interview. I didn't go out there and meet, so I really didn't have a clue."'

Marker Bills will try to keep playoff hopes alive vs. Raiders [1:51 AM]
Contra Costa Times reports: '"That's the stigma with Buffalo," Bills wide receiver Sammy Watkins said in a conference call with Bay Area media Wednesday. "That's all you hear. They never talk about the four Super Bowls that they went to. All you hear about is the 14 years that they didn't go to the playoffs. It's bad and we know that as a team and an organization. We're going to fix it."'

Marker Thursday's Oakland Coverage [1:50 AM]
TwoBillsDrive.com reports:
O.co Coliseum is home, sweet home, for quarterback Derek Carr (Oakland Tribune)
Raiders' Carr nurses injury, gives support to Sparano (Contra Costa Times)
Bills will try to keep playoff hopes alive vs. Raiders (Contra Costa Times)
Raiders' Khalil Mack almost was a Buffalo Bill (Contra Costa Times)
Minor injuries not expected to sideline Raiders QB Carr (San Francisco Chronicle)
Carr faces another tough test in rookie season (AP)
Raiders' Carr goes to bat for retaining Sparano (The Sports Xchange)
With Sio Moore out, Armstrong ready for increased role (CSN Bay Area)
Carr limited with thumb issue (CSN Bay Area)
Could This Sunday Be The Raiders’ Last Game In Oakland? (KPIX-TV)
Tale Of The Tape: Buffalo Bills At Oakland Raiders (KPIX-TV)
Practice Recap - December 17 (Raiders.com)
Coach Sparano: "It was high energy, we practiced fast" (Raiders.com)
Carr Dinged Up, Says He's Okay (Raiders.com)
Armstrong: "You Want to Win" (Raiders.com)
Bills WR Sammy Watkins Discusses Match-Up (Raiders.com)
Getting to Know TJ Carrie (Raiders.com)
Raiders vs Bills Notable Connections (Raiders.com)

Marker Win and hope: Bills focus solely on facing Raiders [1:49 AM]
AP reports: '"It's meaningful, but it's not surprising," center Eric Wood said, referring to Buffalo being in contention. "I felt like this was the position we'd be in. I probably wish we'd be in a more controlling position, but being in the hunt, I'm not surprised."'

Marker Bills-Raiders Preview [1:48 AM]
AP reports: 'Buffalo's offense has been the problem, as it failed to get into the end zone against the Packers. The Bills, who scored on a safety, four Dan Carpenter field goals and Marcus Thigpen's 75-yard punt return, rank second to last in the league with 20 touchdowns in 49 red-zone possessions (40.8 percent).'

Marker Bills simplify playoff equation: Just win [1:47 AM]
The Sports Xchange reports: '"We've got a lot of improvement to do," said Marrone, speaking specifically about his moribund offense. "I think that records really don't mean a lot when you watch the film. Obviously, the Raiders are playing much better than they had been playing. They're very physical. They're a team that's getting better each week. It'll be a great challenge for us."'

Marker Bills make room, have role for RB Spiller [1:46 AM]
The Sports Xchange reports: '"Once you get that first lick in you're ready to play ball, and I don't think it'll be any different," he said. "I'm pretty sure if I'm able to go they're going to take a shot at it and we'll see how I do. Conditioning will be different because I haven't played in two months so I won't be in top-notch football shape, but I think if I'm able to go, I can perform at a high level. I don't want to get into percentages, but if I'm able to go then I'll go. We'll see how these next couple days go and see how I respond every day after practice and then make a decision.'

Marker Illness claims Wednesday from Bills' Chandler [1:45 AM]
WGR-AM reports: 'Even without Chandler, the tight end group didn't slip below three players on the field at one time due to the return of one of their own. Second-year player Chris Gragg returned to the practice field for the first time since he suffered a knee injury.'

Marker C.J. Spiller status still to be determined [1:44 AM]
BuffaloBills.com reports: 'C.J. Spiller was limited in practice Wednesday, and has not yet been added to the active roster. A final decision is expected later in the week.'

Marker Bills 2014 D comparable with '99 and '04 units [1:43 AM]
BuffaloBills.com reports: 'The 1999 club won their games in much the way the 2014 team is winning, with defense and just enough offense. They won 11 times that season and the main reason was their defense held the opponent to 10 points or less in almost half of their games (7 games).'

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December 17, 2014

Marker Win over Packers answers four key questions [12:59 PM]
Olean Times Herald reports: 'No Bills coach has improved the team by three victories in one season since Mike Mularkey did it 10 years ago.'

Marker Draft crop results are mixed [1:59 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'The Clemson product has set franchise rookie records with 59 catches and 850 yards to go with five touchdowns. In just about any other year, those numbers would be considered an enormous success. But expectations for Watkins are at another level, partly because the 2014 wide receiver class is already being discussed as the best in history.'

Marker Would Bills take a shot at Cutler? [1:58 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Cutler has been accused of being a coach killer. He has a reputation for being smug and arrogant and immature, a poor leader and worse teammate. He has infuriated his own offensive line while publicly admonishing them. In 2010, he was ridiculed for not returning to the NFC Championship game after hurting his knee.'

Marker Dareus street-racing case postponed as plea talks continue [1:57 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Defense attorney Michael P. Caffery said he and his client will return to court Jan. 13 for further proceedings as they continue “to try to resolve the case without going to trial.”'

Marker Buffalo Bills release FB Frank Summers to make room for C.J. Spiller [1:56 AM]
Syracuse Post-Standard reports: 'Upon releasing Summers, the Bills now have four running backs on the active roster. Spiller's return would further crowd a running back rotation that has been led by Fred Jackson with Anthony Dixon and Bryce Brown serving as change-of-pace backs.'

Marker Buffalo Bills send Detroit Lions pizza, wings for hospitality during snowstorm [1:55 AM]
Syracuse Post-Standard reports: 'Late Bills owner Ralph Wilson, a Michigan resident, would certainly be glad to see the relationship between the franchises continuing to grow.'

Marker Former Bills player Steve Christie has tumour removed, kicks cancer [1:54 AM]
Toronto Sun reports: '“(Everything) they took out was cancer-free, and it had not spread. So I’m in remission.”'

Marker Marcell Dareus returns to court over multiple traffic charges [1:53 AM]
Birmingham News reports: 'The car wreck is one of two off-the-field incidents that Dareus is trying to resolve. On May 5, he was arrested after being stopped for speeding on Interstate 20 in Cleburne County and charged with felony possession of a controlled substance -- "spice," also known as synthetic cannabis. For the Alabama arrest, Dareus was allowed to enter a pretrial-intervention program. If he completes the court-ordered requirements, which include participation in the NFL's substance-abuse program, the charges will be dropped and the arrest could be erased from his record.'

Marker Bills deliver Lions pizza, wings for hospitality [1:53 AM]
AP reports: 'Bills spokesman Scott Berchtold called the food delivery a "small token of our appreciation for the (Lions') generous hospitality."'

Marker Bills Dareus' court hearing postponed to Jan. 13 [1:52 AM]
AP reports: 'The Bills' 2011 first-round draft pick was charged and also issued numerous traffic violations after crashing his 2012 Jaguar into a tree during an alleged race with teammate Jerry Hughes not far from Ralph Wilson Stadium on May 30.'

Marker Bills make room for Spiller by releasing Summers [1:51 AM]
AP reports: 'Summers became expendable after his playing time began to dwindle. The third-year player started seven of Buffalo's first nine games before being listed inactive in each of the past four.'

Marker Bills release FB Summers [1:50 AM]
The Sports Network reports: 'Summers started six of the first seven games this season, but has been inactive for the past four weeks. Used mostly as a blocker, Summers had six carries for 17 yards and a touchdown.'

Marker FB Frank Summers released [1:49 AM]
BuffaloBills.com reports: 'Summers was signed by Buffalo as a free agent on April 18, 2013 and entered the NFL as a fifth-round (169th overall) draft selection of the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2009.'

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12/21 @ Oakland Raiders 4:25 pm
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