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Buffalo Bills News - January 4, 2005

Marker Unsung Heroes Contribute to Winning Year [11:08 AM]
BuffaloBills.com reports: 'Part of the reason Vincent was moved to free safety was the impressive play of Terrence McGee during the veteran's absence. After a few bumps along the way during his first few starts, the former fourth-round pick excelled. McGee ended up with three interceptions for the season in his new role. However, even more impressive was McGee's blossoming role as the team's primary kick returner. He tied a franchise record with three kickoff returns for touchdowns during the year, the longest being a 104-yard return against the Miami Dolphins on Dec. 5. The spectacular play now stands as the longest kick return ever by a Bill. McGee's accomplishments didn't go unnoticed - he was selected as the AFC kick return specialist in this year's Pro Bowl.'

Marker 'Wait 'til next year,' Bills [10:24 AM]
Wellsville Daily Reporter reports: 'Enter J.P. Losman. The rookie quarterback has had a year to learn Mike Mularkey's offense and has had occasional chances to get his feet wet in some of the late season blowouts. He was drafted to eventually succeed Bledsoe as Buffalo's starting quarterback and next season's opener should be the time for that to happen.'

Marker An eye toward the future [8:53 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"Overall, I am proud that I was able to stay the course and keep going forward as a leader on this team through some very hard times," Bledsoe said. "I am proud of that. As I've said, playing this position, that's the biggest challenge you face if you're going to do it for any extended time. You have to deal with the lows and be able to keep going forward through that. I'm proud of how that played out."'

Marker Henry wants to play elsewhere next season [8:52 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"I had a good career here," he said. "I learned a lot here. I look at it as a good experience. I'm just ready to get back healthy and get back to doing the things that I know I can do on the football field."'

Marker Bills can't take next step with Bledsoe [8:51 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'If the Bills expect to win a Super Bowl with the guy, they're kidding themselves.'

Marker Bills still sore about losing to Steelers [8:50 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Bills defensive coordinator Jerry Gray is a possible candidate to be interviewed for the head coaching vacancy at Syracuse, a source told the Buffalo News. The Orange is looking to replace Paul Pasqualoni, who was fired last week.'

Marker Tuesday's Pittsburgh Coverage [7:12 AM]
TwoBillsDrive.com reports:
Parker another weapon (Beaver County Times)
A Meaningless Game? Not to Steelers Reserves (New York Times)
Steelers' backups weren't about to back into the playoffs (AP)
Steelers report: Strategy and personnel (CBS Sportsline)
Parker was well-rested for his big break (Steelers.com)

Marker What's your take on the Bills' 2004 season? [5:10 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'I keep thinking of that crumpled sign I spotted in the stands on Sunday. "Do you smell the playoffs?" Turns out all we were smelling was a fraud.'

Marker Bledsoe: Bills are my team in '05 [5:09 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'Not great, but not bad, and being not bad is about the best many Bills observers could have hoped for given the way Bledsoe had played from the middle of 2002 through the middle of 2004. But is playing not bad going to be good enough to get the Bills over the hump and into the playoffs?'

Marker Henry says it's time for Bills to trade him [5:08 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'It's believed Buffalo will try to recoup the first-round pick (20th overall) that they've shipped to Dallas to consummate the deal last spring for the chance to draft quarterback J.P. Losman. However, with a strong free-agent class of running backs, including Shaun Alexander, Edgerrin James, and Rudi Johnson, along with a strong college class, the market for Henry may be very limited.'

Marker Was Bills 2004 season good, bad or ugly? [5:07 AM]
WGRZ-TV reports: 'After the loss to the Steelers, I framed a question to Mike Mularkey that was a polite way of asking if the Bills basically got a little tight around the collars. The question was if winning is still a learning experience, with the game against the Steelers clearly the most important of the season even though the Bills had six straight wins. Mularkey said no, that all the games were basically the same; they were all important because a loss at any point would all but end the playoff hope. The coach said the game against Pittsburgh only SEEMED bigger because the media and fans made it so. Sorry, but I’m just not buying that.'

Marker Bills Fall Just Short [5:06 AM]
WIVB-TV reports: 'There will be an entire off-season of finger pointing at Drew Bledsoe for Sunday’s loss. He did not play well. But Drew is Drew. He’s not going to win a game for you. He’s a quarterback with limitations, who functions when all the other parts of the team are working well.'

Marker Henry Says He's Gone [5:05 AM]
WGR-AM reports: 'He says he has good memories of his time in Buffalo. When asked whether he considered himself as good as gone, Henry said, ''Yeah, most definitely.'' Henry told me personally he was going to tell head coach Mike Mularkey these thoughts in their meeting.'

Marker Bills Can't Win Big Game [5:04 AM]
RNews.com reports: '“This is the first time I've been a free agent,” Jennings said following Sunday’s finale. “I'd love to come back, I'd love to play. I think this team's got something going that we can definitely take into next year. But both parties have to be on the same page.”'

Marker Inside slant [5:03 AM]
CBS Sportsline reports: 'Henry, 26, is signed through next season but he said he's confident the Bills can find a team to trade him to. "Most definitely, there are a lot of teams out there I'm confident that would live to have a Travis Henry on their team," he said. "It's just a matter of what the Bills want to do."'

Marker Strategy and personnel [5:02 AM]
CBS Sportsline reports: 'Drew Bledsoe left the door open for rookie J.P. Losman to come in and compete for his starting job next season with a horrible performance.'

Marker Notes, quotes [5:01 AM]
CBS Sportsline reports: 'WR Lee Evans, the team's first-round pick from Wisconsin, enjoyed one of the best rookie seasons in club history with 48 catches for 843 yards and a rookie record nine TDs. Evans caught five passes of 55 yards or more (65, 55, 69, 60 and 56). Thirty-eight of his catches resulted in first downs.'

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January 3, 2005

Marker Ask Him Yourself: Mike Mularkey [9:33 PM]
BuffaloBills.com reports: 'What did you say to Drew Bledsoe and the team after the heart-breaker Sunday, especially after finding out the Jets lost?
MM: I told them not to let this one game overshadow what they accomplished to get to this point, the insurmountable odds that you had to win every game for seven weeks straight. It will be easy to lose sight of what they did with the one loss, but they shouldn't.'

Marker Ask Him Yourself: Tom Donahoe [9:32 PM]
BuffaloBills.com reports: 'Since this is the second time this year Rian Lindell missed a chip shot to ice a game (he also missed an easy field goal against Jacksonville), isn't it time to find a more pressure-ready kicker? Especially given the money he is making?
TD: Rian Lindell will be evaluated just like everyone else on our football team. One of the things we try to do in evaluations is look at the total picture and not just one game or one particular kick. All and all, it appears that Rian has had a very good season this year when you look at his field goal percentage and his kickoffs. Rian is not any different than any player on this team. They will all be evaluated and evaluated thoroughly.'

Marker Dud of an ending ruins Bills' season [9:28 PM]
AP reports: '``I'm just a sore loser,'' cornerback Nate Clements said. ``We're going to stick together, no matter what. And hopefully, we can look at this end on a positive note.'''

Marker Steelers' backups weren't about to back into the playoffs [5:13 PM]
AP reports: 'Coach Bill Cowher preached all last week that, even with home-field advantage and a first-round bye clinched, he expected to win in Buffalo.'

Marker Steelers stun oblivious Bills [1:45 PM]
Niagara Falls Reporter reports: 'The Steelers outran the Bills 157-92 and hassled Bledsoe into two crucial turnovers and only two third-down conversions in 12 chances, disabusing the fanciful notion that Buffalo's defense belongs in the same conversation with Pittsburgh's.'

Marker Bills RB Henry wants out of Buffalo [1:12 PM]
AP reports: '''I'm a starter. I've been starting since I've been in this league,'' Henry said. ''I know the role that I was given this year. I didn't like it, but I dealt with it.'' Asked whether he considered himself as good as gone, Henry said: ''Yeah, most definitely.'''

Marker Bills' Travis Henry wants out [1:06 PM]
Rochester D&C reports: '"I want to go somewhere where I can be a starter, and play, and a be a big contributor -- that's where my mind is at,'' Henry said today as the Bills cleaned out their lockers after Sunday's season-ending 29-24 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers. "Like I said at the beginning of the year, I'm not a backup. Whatever they decide to do, wherever their mind is at, I don't know. I already know where my mind is at.'''

Marker Steelers wrap up impressive regular season with 14th straight win [11:59 AM]
McKeesport Daily News reports: 'The Bills looked nothing like the team that had outscored its previous six opponents 228-89. Buffalo managed just 267 total yards and the defense couldn't get the Steelers off the field, losing the time-of-possession battle by more than 11 minutes.'

Marker Steelers' second team played like starters [11:59 AM]
McKeesport Daily News reports: 'At one point, the Bills were trying to stop Brian St. Pierre, Willie Parker, Lee Mays, Walter Rasby and Sean Morey. And the Bills couldn't do it.'

Marker Curtains for the Bills [11:49 AM]
Olean Times Herald reports: 'And strong safety Lawyer Milloy conceded, “It was obviously the turning point of the game. We were up at that point and we let them get the momentum back.” But he quickly added, “It wasn’t just the missed kick ... every one of us had a hand in this loss."'

Marker Bills see why Steelers are AFC’s best [11:48 AM]
Olean Times Herald reports: 'From the middle of the second period on, the only defensive starters who played an appreciable amount of time were inside linebacker Larry Foote and cornerback Chad Foote. And still the Bills, who had everything to play for, struggled on both sides of the ball.'

Marker It was Parker’s turn to shine for the Steelers [11:48 AM]
Olean Times Herald reports: '“I guess (Buffalo) thought we were go to lay down and give it to them,” Colclough said. “We didn’t do that today.”'

Marker Steelers just fourth team to go 15-1 [11:47 AM]
Olean Times Herald reports: 'Before Sunday, the Bills were 9-0 in January home games.'

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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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