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Buffalo Bills News - September 28, 2004

Marker Can Szabo's secrets help the Bills? [5:04 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'He knows what makes coach Bill Belichick tick, why quarterback Tom Brady is so successful, how defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel schemes a blitz. Heck, he knows how the Patriots take their coffee. But just how important is his input this week?'

Marker Patriots respect Bledsoe, 0-2 Bills [5:03 AM]
Boston Herald reports: '``We are not as familiar with them as before with them having a new coach,'' Pats linebacker Roman Phifer said. ``They are going to do some things different but they do have a lot of the same players. We know that they are good players and they are capable of being a good team. The couple of games they lost, they could have won. It could have gone either way, so we are not taking anything for granted.'''

Marker Drew is the biggest draw when it comes to Bills [5:02 AM]
Providence Journal reports: '"Every starting QB in the NFL is dangerous. All of them can beat you," said Pats safety Rodney Harrison. "It's just a matter of which Drew shows up. I don't think it's about him. It's about us. It's about us going out there and playing good, tight coverage against the receivers. When they catch it, we hit them and be fundamentally sound."'

Marker Patriots return from bye to battle the Bills in Buffalo New England Patriots [5:01 AM] reports: 'The Patriots are 13-6 against the Bills in their last 19 meetings.'

Marker Tuesday's New England Coverage [5:00 AM] reports:
Phifer still has that old touch (Boston Globe)
Patriots respect Bledsoe, 0-2 Bills (Boston Herald)
Dillon gives Pats a decisive leg up (Boston Herald)
Pats anxious to get the ball rolling again (Providence Journal)
Drew is the biggest draw when it comes to Bills (Providence Journal)
Graham moves to head of classs (Metro West Daily News)
Patriots Still Could Be Run Over (Hartford Courant)
Phifer sticks to routine (Springfield Republican)
Pats shift attention to Bills (Woonsocket Call)
Catching up with Bledsoe (Attleboro Sun Chronicle)
Bledsoe still looks lost (Quincy Patriot Ledger)
Struggling Bledsoe has fallen on tough times with the Bills (Brockton Enterprise)
One year after last loss, Patriots focus on next game (AP)
Patriots exit bye week with anxious feeling (
Patriots return from bye to battle the Bills in Buffalo (
Grogan's Grade: Bye Week (
Patriots fight a losing battle in Beantown (Philadelphia Inquirer)

Marker Why to watch: Patriots-Bills [4:59 AM]
The Sporting News reports: 'Run or pass, offensive coordinator Charlie Weis said this week -- after Belichick took his gag off -- that this year's personnel is the best group he has ever had. Look for a wide-open attack as they try to get a big lead early. . . .'

Marker Beleaguered Line [4:58 AM] reports: '“I'm very confident about the O line, we're real close,” said running back Travis Henry. “We have shown in the preseason and training camp what type of football team we can be and I think we're going to get it done."'

Marker Inside slant [4:57 AM]
CBS Sportsline reports: 'In four previous games against their old signal caller, the Patriots sacked Bledsoe 11 times, intercepted him seven times, held him to an average of 236 yards passing and won three times.'

Marker Strategy and personnel [4:56 AM]
CBS Sportsline reports: 'The Bills line can't sustain its blocks long enough and Bledsoe can't buy any time, meaning they can't use Evans speed to get deep.'

Marker Notes, quotes [4:55 AM]
CBS Sportsline reports: 'QB Drew Bledsoe has been almost as easy to sack as ex-Bill Rob Johnson, who was run out of town because of his inability to make plays under pressure. Bledsoe has been sacked 111 times in 34 games with Buffalo - an average of 3.3 per game. Johnson was sacked an average of 3.63.'

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September 27, 2004

Marker Losman on track to begin practicing within five weeks [6:45 PM]
AP reports: '''Putting the plate in was first and foremost the smartest thing,'' Wichard said. ''This way there's no question about the healing of the bone. ... Now it's just a question of building it up, the bone marrow, and it heals.'''

Marker Ask him yourself: Tom Donahoe [5:03 PM] reports: raig Feinberg (Buffalo, NY): Mr. Donahoe, how do you justify your performance as GM when you have spent two first-round picks in 4 years on a QB, already misfired on one coaching staff, misjudged a No. 4 overall draft choice. Selected only 1-Pro Bowler in 4 years, and have a 17-33 record as the Bills GM? TD: In the three plus years we've been in Buffalo we've had a lot of issues to deal with and many of the issues we have dealt with successfully. People can pick and choose what they want to talk about with regard to our record in Buffalo and ultimately we will be judged by that record. We do feel that there are a lot of positives to our organization. There are a lot of positives to our team and we're going to continue to build on those positives. From three years ago we have a very healthy cap situation with our team we have basically transformed our roster. There are only two veteran players that still remain from the first team that we had here in Buffalo and there are a lot of positive signs things are improving. Some people see the glass as half empty and we've always chosen to see the glass as half full.

Marker Ask him yourself: Mike Mularkey [5:03 PM] reports: Matt Hagstrom (Bemus Point, NY): How long do you back Bledsoe when he just doesn't seem to be producing? MM: I think a one-game performance is way too early to start thinking about when will I pull him or when will I not pull him. I still believe that Drew gives us the best opportunity to win. Fans may not want to hear that, but some of it goes to the old adage that the QB receives too much blame when you lose and too much credit when you win.

September 26, 2004

Marker Bledsoe's talk is brave, but he acts like he's defeated [9:03 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'The Bills can rationalize all they want, but the leader of their offense is running out of time. And they're running out of options.'

Marker Bills need attitude, not sympathy [9:02 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'To borrow a political phrase, it's the offensive line, stupid.'

Marker Sack attack concerns Bills [5:08 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'And Drew Bledsoe, the biggest tree in the Petrified Forest, is still Buffalo's quarterback.'

Marker Pressure's on Bledsoe [5:04 AM]
Boston Herald reports: '``I think our best chance to win right now is with Drew Bledsoe, who has to be surrounded by a bunch of guys who are playing at a high level. Making a switch at one position would be the easy way out but that's not the way we would go.'''

September 25, 2004

Marker Brown 'humbled' by induction [3:43 PM]
Arizona Daily Sun reports: 'He recently came to terms on an injury settlement with the Bills. He is currently rehabbing in the Valley and cannot re-sign with the Bills until Week 12, but he can sign a free-agent deal with the league's other 31 clubs at any time. "My plan is to get healthy. I should be fully healthy in two to three weeks and see if I can land on somewhere," the Phoenix Moon Valley High School graduate said.'

Marker Bledsoe takes heat for Bills' terrible start [3:41 PM]
Fort Lauderdale Sun Sentinel reports: '"When we win, I'm going to get more credit than I deserve. When we lose, I'm going to take a lot of (criticism). I understand it. If I couldn't handle it, I wouldn't be here 12 years into a career still fighting to win games."'

Marker Thomas speaks his heart [5:20 AM]
Garden City Telegram reports: '"When you think of a professional athlete, any pro athlete, you think of the good life; millions of dollars, fancy cars, big houses, beautiful women. You think everything is fine. He's living the good life," Thomas said. "I've had problems ever since I retired from football. It's hard for me to talk about it, but the one thing I could not conquer was ... I'm a recovering alcoholic. That is the hardest challenge I have right now. I have control now in that I know when to stop. I can take one drink but if I take two drinks, I'll be back to where I was two years ago."'

September 24, 2004

Marker NFL Says No Apologies Have Been Sent To Bills [5:20 PM]
WGR-AM reports: 'Aiello says coaches send in plays every week. The league goes over them and gets back in contact with teams either through phone or fax. Teams are then told what is legal and what is not on a specific play so coaches can coach their players correctly. Aiello said the NFL does not send out letters of apology to teams for blown calls.'

Marker Offense Main Focus During Bye Week [11:14 AM] reports: '"Every player on the offense needs to pick up his game," wide receiver Eric Moulds said. "We're just making mistakes that we shouldn't be making right now. We get things done in practice but it doesn't mean anything if we can't bring that to the field. We just need to focus on our own jobs and that will make us more efficient."'

Marker Work on special teams could show good returns for Bills [8:52 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"Obviously, we have to eliminate having things called back on us," said special teams coach Bobby April. "But I think the prospects look really good."'

Marker Bills still search for a rushing rhythm [5:05 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'In establishing the ball-control identity coach Mike Mularkey and offensive coordinator Tom Clements feel is best for their team, the Bills have called 60 run plays vs. 51 pass plays. But while that commitment to the run bodes well, the production has been less than scintillating, raising questions about why Mularkey and Clements have been unwilling, or unable, to capitalize on McGahee's talents.'

Marker NFL: 3 Calls Go Against Bills [5:04 AM] reports: 'While acknowledging mistakes by its officials, there is no recourse. The Bills still lose.'

September 23, 2004

Marker Spikes Watches As The Bills Continue To Work [9:55 PM]
WGR-AM reports: 'Thursday the team practiced with much of it designed to work on the things that keep plaguing them in games. I'm sure there are parts of practice to work on New England, but the players won't get the actual game plan until after Friday's done.'

Marker Bledsoe Says He Knows His Role [9:54 PM]
WGR-AM reports: 'Henry also believes in Bledsoe. "Everybody is on the same page. We gotta finish drives. Number 11, he's going to take us where we need to be. We just gotta follow behind him, protect him and get this thing moving." Henry said. We expect big things out of myself, Moulds and Drew. We gotta make it happen. We gotta be the spark for our offense."'

Marker Anchorage Backers Get Up For Every Game [5:51 PM] reports: '"There were only three of us in the beginning," McComb said. "We had a television and a speaker box on a table … but from word of mouth it's gotten quite big."'

Marker Flashback: Jerry Butler has Record Day [3:46 PM] reports: 'Sept. 23, 1979: In his first three games, Bills rookie receiver Jerry Butler, hampered by a shoulder separation, had 11 catches for 162 yards and no touchdowns. However, during the fourth game of the year, at home against the division rival Jets, he nearly doubled his season total of receptions. And only two weeks after halfback Roland Hooks had found the endzone four times against Cincinnati, Butler did the same against New York, as Buffalo beat the Jets, 46-31.'

Marker “New Attitude” Bills Risky! [12:55 PM] reports: 'Can this team led by incompetent GM Donahoe, rookie head coach Mike Mularkey, and now “Iron Legs” Bledsoe possibly be digging themselves a deeper hole? I ask the question in all sincerity. Is it possible? I am not sure that it is.'

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09/10 New York Jets 1:00 pm
09/17 @ Carolina Panthers 1:00 pm
09/24 Denver Broncos 1:00 pm
10/01 @ Atlanta Falcons 1:00 pm
10/08 @ Cincinnati Bengals 1:00 pm
10/22 Tampa Bay Buccaneers 1:00 pm
10/29 Oakland Raiders 1:00 pm
11/2 @ New York Jets 8:25 pm
11/12 New Orlean Saints 1:00 pm
11/19 @ San Diego Chargers 4:05 pm
11/26 @ Kansas City Chiefs 1:00 pm
12/3 New England Patriots 1:00 pm
12/10 Indianapolis Colts 1:00 pm
12/17 Miami Dolphins 1:00 pm
12/24 @ New England Patriots 1:00 pm
12/31 @ Miami Dolphins 1:00 pm

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