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Buffalo Bills News - June 8, 2000

Marker Phillips likes 'new look' of secondary [9:05 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"I'm pleased about that because we did lose two guys out of the secondary that started for us," said Phillips, who saw Smith (Chicago) and Schulz (Detroit) leave via free agency. "But it looked like we're right back where we were last year. It doesn't look like we've missed a beat as far as pass coverage is concerned. There's no pass rush on seven-on-seven drills, so the quarterbacks have time (to throw), and we're covering them. Some of the guys are making outstanding plays. "I'm encouraged about our pass defense. It's going to take a rush with it, but the coverage has a lot to do with how well you rush sometimes."'

Marker Flutie still sore over that playoff benching [6:22 AM]
Toronto Star reports: '``No, I'm definitely not over that,'' Flutie said yesterday as the Bills went through day two of a four-day mini-camp. Furthermore, he doesn't think he will ever be able to put it behind him. ``Just like I've never gotten over why they benched me back in New England 10 years ago,'' added the former six-time CFL MVP. ``If you don't understand (why something's happened to you) it's hard to accept.'

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June 7, 2000

Marker Bills confident they have emerging leaders to fill any void [9:08 PM]
AP reports: '"There may have been some questions -- by a lot of people, a lot of guys on the team, even -- about the moves that were made in the off-season," [Henry] Jones said. "And I think it was time to clear the air, for us and say, 'Every year there's change. ... The only difference this year is some veterans that were here for a long time are gone. But that just means some guys are going to have to step up and play."''

Marker Scary moments during day two [6:53 PM]
Shout! reports: "The Bills survived a couple of scares when trainer Bud Carpenter had to go onto the field to tend to Antowain Smith and nose tackle Ted Washington. When Smith came up limping after catching a pass, there was concern that Smith had aggravated his turf toe."

Marker Defense ahead of offense [1:46 PM]
Shout! reports: Wade Phillips stated the obvious." Our pass coverage looked awfully good. It was good for our offense working against the defense that led the NFL in pass defense last year. Our linebackers did a good job, and our secondary coverage looked very good."

Marker Bills host flag FB [1:40 PM]
Shout! reports: "Flag Football is coming to Ralph Wilson Stadium Saturday & Sunday, July 8-9, when the Buffalo Bills host the first ever Buffalo Bills Youth Foundation Flag Football Tournament. The tournament will be held on the Buffalo Bills grass practice field adjacent to Ralph Wilson Stadium."

Marker Bills' Bryson back after hard year of rehab [1:19 PM]
AP reports: "It feels good being back able to do what I used to be able to do," Bryson said. "Right now everything's going good. I'm proud ... It is a relief because I spent a lot of time rehabbing."

Marker Quarterbacks with a case (or not) for the Hall [12:59 PM]
The Sporting News reports: What makes Kelly rare is that he was the only quarterback of his era who called his own plays, and that he was good enough at it to direct the Bills to four Super Bowls. That is what gives him a chance at the Hall.

Marker Playbook heavy lifting for rookies [9:00 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'When rookie defensive end Erik Flowers got his first playbook before the Buffalo Bills' minicamp in April, he must have thought playing in the NFL would be a cinch. Then he got a look at the real playbook. "It looks like a dictionary," the Bills' first-round draft pick said following Tuesday's minicamp workout at Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Field House. "It was stunned. I looked at it, and said to myself, "What am I supposed to do with this?' It taught me my first lesson that there's a lot more to learn."'

Marker Four out on Day 1 [8:35 AM]
Shout! reports: "The Bills' third voluntary June mini-camp under head coach Wade Phillips opened with 73 players present from the 77-man roster. Missing were left offensive tackle John Fina, Sam linebacker Sam Rogers, kicker Steve Christie and non-drafted rookie wide receiver Corey Jones."

Marker Check your programs for new Bills lineup [7:17 AM]
Toronto Star reports: 'But don't try to tell head coach Wade Phillips that this is a rebuilding year, or that the team will be revamped, retooled or redesigned. In Phillips' mind, there's no reason the Bills should not be expected to build on its 11-5 record of a year ago and get deeper into the postseason that the division wild card game. Las Vegas oddsmakers clearly concur, recently listing the Bills at 8 to 1 to represent the AFC East in the Super Bowl.'

Marker Giancola ready for kick at Bills [7:16 AM]
Toronto Sun reports: 'The Bills signed Giancola primarily for kickoffs, which is not a strong suit of veteran placekicker Steve Christie of Oakville...To be sure, the Bills need work in that department after losing to Tennessee in the first round of the playoffs on the Titans' miraculous last-play touchdown return.'

Marker JetBlue Airways Named [7:14 AM]
JetBlue Airways reports: Obviously, JetBlue Airways needs a better spell-checker!

June 6, 2000

Marker Colts' Polian hopes his future will be as successful as his past with Bills [9:03 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'For Polian, it was a chance to reminisce about his days as the Bills' general manager. "Those were some really special times," said the President and General Manager of the Indianapolis Colts. "Western New York remains a very special place to everyone in my family. Seeing all the guys again is very special.'

June 5, 2000

Marker Former Bills wideout Reed receives Broncos' attention [1:19 PM]
Denver Rocky Mountain News reports: "Broncos officials said Friday the visit wasn't finalized yet but any decision likely would be made before the staff goes on vacation after the team's mini-camp Tuesday through Friday."

Marker Kelly's son is beating the odds [9:01 AM]
Buffalo News reports: "The difficult fight against Krabbe disease could not have found a much more fitting poster child than Hunter Kelly. The son of former Buffalo Bills quarterback has proven to be a fighter extraordinaire. He was expected to live only 14 months. He now is 3 years and 3 months old."

Marker Titans' pass was indeed a lateral [9:01 AM]
Buffalo News reports: "Yes, I know. The issue became moot long ago. The pass was completed. The Titans scored the touchdown. The officials reviewed the pass and decided it was a legal lateral. The Bills lost the game. The NFL published two photographs of the play to convince everybody that the referee's decision was correct. After a preliminary analysis, I decided that the officials were probably correct."

Marker Kelly, pilot give differing accounts of accident [7:41 AM]
AP reports: "I know what happened, I know what I had to say,'' Kelly told the Buffalo News. "I know that when you get out of a plane and you go underwater, it's a little deeper than six inches. I know I'm not a goldfish, I know I'm not that small.''

June 4, 2000

Marker Softer side of Wade sometimes obscures his achievements [5:09 PM]
Buffalo News reports: "Around the NFL, Phillips is admired for the work he did in picking up the pieces of the 1997 team, which bumbled to a 6-10 record in Marv Levy's farewell season. Phillips' first team reversed the record to 10-6 and made the playoffs."

Marker The plane truth [5:08 PM]
Buffalo News reports: "(The pilot) said he landed in the tidal zone, in 6 inches of water," Jim LaBelle, who heads the National Transportation Safety Board in Anchorage, told the Associated Press.

Marker Buried alive? [5:07 PM]
Buffalo News reports: "Up until reading the Page 1 article on the Bills (May 28), I was feeling great, playing tennis daily, and enjoying the 80-and-over international tennis tournament in Austria."

Marker Even fibbing, Kelly can't win big one [5:06 PM]
Palm Beach Post reports: "Not enough, apparently, that he quarterbacked in four Super Bowls for the Buffalo Bills. Not enough that he takes his vacations in remote sections of Alaska accessible only by airplane and hundreds of miles from the nearest limo for hire. Not enough that he hunts bears there and not just defenseless ducks."

June 3, 2000

Marker St. John Fisher, Bills to keep training camp free of alcohol [9:40 AM]
D and C reports: "Do you avoid Buffalo Bills games because you're afraid of having beer spilled on you by strangers? Or do you cringe at the thought of wading through a sea of tipsy, rowdy tailgaters in the Ralph Wilson Stadium parking lots?"

June 2, 2000

Marker Pilot questions Kelly's version of landing [10:12 PM]
AP reports: "The pilot of the plane carrying Jim Kelly has a less harrowing account of the rough landing in the Berring Sea than the one given by the former Buffalo Bills quarterback."

Marker Crash stories clash [7:42 AM]
Anchorage Daily News reports: "Former Buffalo Bills quarterback Jim Kelly says he is lucky to be alive after a plane he was in went down in the Bering Sea recently, 100 yards off the Alaska Peninsula."

Marker Jim Kelly Bear Hunting Photo [7:41 AM]
National Post reports: That is one big bear...

June 1, 2000

Marker Kelly brothers happy Jim Kelly returned home safe after plane crash [3:20 PM]
AP reports: "Pat Kelly was on the beach helplessly watching as the two-seat plane carrying his famous brother - ex-Buffalo Bills quarterback Jim Kelly - struggled to land on the Alaskan coast."

Marker Bills allow fans' knees some room to roam [9:04 AM]
Buffalo News reports: "No longer will Ralph Wilson Stadium have to be classified as an open-air theater to comply with the state building code. And all the Buffalo Bills had to do was tilt the tops of the seats forward a few inches."

Marker Kelly survives plane crash during Alaskan hunting trip [8:47 AM]
AP reports: "Former Buffalo Bills quarterback Jim Kelly sustained minor cuts and scrapes when a two-seat plane he was in crashed into the Bering Sea off the coast of Alaska during a hunting trip earlier this month."

May 31, 2000

Marker Parking fees rise along Bills Drive [9:03 AM]
Buffalo News reports:

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