Cincinnati (1-3) at Buffalo (2-2) Sunday, 1:00 pm EDT [8:49 PM]
CNN/SI reports: Marvin Lewis had a chance to become coach of the Buffalo Bills following the 2000 season. But the Bills ultimately decided on Gregg Williams. [Lewis rejected the Bills.]
In-season changes do little good [8:29 PM]
ESPN reports: Longtime league assistant Hank Bullough, who went 2-10 after inheriting the Buffalo Bills four games into the 1985 season, once noted: "You're in the middle of the hill, the snowball is coming at you, and they want you to figure out a way to push that thing back up the mountain. Good luck."
Schobel sets double-digit sack goal [5:39 PM]
AP reports: '''Because of how I play, I think I'm always going to get a decent amount of sacks,'' he said. ''But I was more dominating in college. And I want to get that feel back. ... And that's when I'll be satisfied. I ain't saying sacks, I'm just saying where I can beat a guy as consistently as I did in college week to week.'''
Henry continues to improve [4:46 PM]
The Sports Network reports: '"I feel better than I did yesterday," said Henry, who was still limited during Thursday's workout. "It feels pretty good."'
Bills-Bengals Game Sold Out [1:26 PM]
BuffaloBills.com reports: 'So far, all three home games in 2003 have sold out by the blackout deadline.'
Quarterback Drew Bledsoe Previews Cincinnati [1:26 PM]
BuffaloBills.com reports: '"I don't think that our confidence has fallen off. I still think that we believe that we can play with anybody when we take the field. We expect to win each time we take the field. We've just got to go out and produce a little bit more. It's been frustrating. You go and watch the film and we'll hit a play and have a penalty. Or we'll come out and have a negative play early and then have to convert a long-yard situation. We've kind of been forcing ourselves to fight some up hill battles with some circumstances that have come up. We need to be a little bit cleaner in our execution across the board. If we do that then we start converting our third downs and we can be a little bit more patient with the running game and get things going."'
Bills Coach Gregg Williams Previews Cincinnati [1:25 PM]
BuffaloBills.com reports: '"The doctors are involved everyday and really it came down to the basic part of us and Travis (Henry), what he can withstand and what was pertain to do with the long season left to go. There's some give and take there but we trust our doctors and they basically said he was good to go if he can stand it."'
Running on empty [1:20 PM]
Buffalo News reports: 'The Bills' offensive line has not controlled the line of scrimmage in the running game the past three weeks. They have run 58 times the past three games for 105 yards - a 1.8-yard average.'
Buffalo's Spikes awaits former team [1:09 PM]
The Sports Network reports: 'The Bengals got into the win column in Cleveland, but Buffalo is an entirely different animal. Spikes will be extremely fired up for this contest and he'll likely wreak havoc in the Cincinnati backfield. Expect the Bengals to implode with at least three turnovers in this one. Cincy hasn't won consecutive road games since 1995 and that trend will continue this week.'
Brady, Bledsoe must limit mistakes if Pats, Bills are to keep pace [11:17 AM]
ProFootballWeekly.com reports: Bills QB Drew Bledsoe and Patriots QB Tom Brady absolutely have killed their teams' chances when they've been slightly off the past season and a quarter, and if these teams are to have a realistic shot at the Super Bowl, these two signal-callers will have to become more consistent and reliable, particularly in protecting the ball. Of course, it would help if their supporting casts were better, but that won't change anytime soon, so the pressure is on Brady and Bledsoe to adapt.
Rudi, Rudi, Rudi [9:45 AM]
Bengals.com reports: '“He’s a straight down-hill runner. He’s got great contact balance,” said Bills linebacker Takeo Spikes, a former Bengal who recalled what his fellow Auburn alum did to the Bills in the preseason. “I know what he can do. A lot of the guys here know what he can do. When I was with Cincinnati, we came up here (last year) and nobody could even tackle Rudi. That’s what these guys are still talking about. He’s not as fast as damn Corey. He’s a power runner.”'
Defense moves on [9:44 AM]
Bengals.com reports: 'Even though Spikes is gone, the defense feels good about the future even though such a huge part of their past is blocking them Sunday.'
Spikes looks forward to meeting former mates [8:54 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"Believe it or not I got a couple phone calls from them on Monday," he said. "I thought they'd be enjoying their win over Cleveland on Monday, but I guess they love Spikes. I got one from Chad Johnson, he left a message, and Tony Williams and Brian Simmons."'
Bills defense sensing a must-win game [8:53 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"As a team, we set our standards high the first two weeks," said strong safety Lawyer Milloy. "That's our potential. That's what we expect out of each other. I've only been here a couple of weeks and that's the first thing I got when I walked through that door. These guys expected to be good. You can go to anybody in this locker room and ask if they think we're playing up to our capabilities and they'd say no."'
Finding a long snapper isn't a snap [8:52 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Long snapping is like real estate. The key is location, location, location. You have to be accurate 99 percent of the time. Albright, the ex-Bill now with the Redskins, has made about $3.5 million in 10 years doing nothing but snapping. If I were a backup lineman at a major college, I'd spend all my summers snapping a ball between my legs.'
Spikes, Lewis didn’t mesh [8:51 AM]
Columbus Dispatch reports: 'When the Bills offered him a six-year, $32 million contract with a $9 million signing bonus, Spikes called Lewis and asked him not to match, as was Cincinnati’s right. Lewis obliged. In what remains the signature move of his brief tenure, Lewis allowed Spikes to leave.'
Lewis wants players to exhibit ‘swagger’ [8:50 AM]
Columbus Dispatch reports: '"Too many times, we make plays and our guys turn around and go back to the huddle," he said. "Let’s be happy with things, let’s be excited, because the other team feels that — that you have that. The term is ‘swagger.’ It’s a confidence thing."'
Spikes has no regrets about leaving Bengals [7:11 AM]
Cincinnati Post reports: '"I personally felt like my tank was running low as far as some of the stuff you had to put up with around there, and then week in and week out getting yourself pumped up mentally thinking you have a chance to win and then be disappointed most of the time," said Spikes. "My mind was pretty much made up. I felt like my time was over. I did my time and, like I told (Lewis), he had some personal goals that he wanted to accomplish in life and I had some at the same time. And I felt that me being there with him and him being there with me, I think we would kind of be cutting short each other of our personal goals."'
Krumrie, LeBeau move on [7:10 AM]
Cincinnati Post reports: '"(LeBeau) does a great job on game days acting as an assistant coach. He's in an advisory role to me constantly," said Williams. "When I was a young coach in this league, (Krumrie) was still playing and I loved watching him when he was playing and he coaches the same way, with the same attitude as he played."'
Surviving the game [7:09 AM]
Cincinnati Post reports: '"If it weren't for football," he says solemnly, humbly, "I'd be one of three places. I'd be dead, I'd be in jail, or, what's the third thing? -- selling drugs. I guarantee you I could give you 30 names right now of people I grew up with who are dead. We got 'em dead, we got 'em in jail, we got 'em on the street hustling."'
Bills aware yellow flags must stop [5:19 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'Against Miami and Philadelphia the past two weeks, the Bills committed 21 penalties worth 168 yards and lost both games, deflating the team’s early season momentum like police road spikes piercing the tires of a getaway car.'
Spikes says Bengals offense won't stall [5:18 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: '“I think it helps to know players’ tendencies,” he said. “I never had to play against the Cincinnati Bengals offense, but I practiced against them a lot. Just seeing how they react in certain situations, who seems to turn it up a level, who falls below the level, who seems to be like ‘I’m going to just do my job and see what happens.’ I definitely know that.”'
Bills getting positive returns on premium seat renewals [5:17 AM]
Business First of Buffalo reports: '"We will continue to work from the list of our clientele," said Tom Donahoe, Bills' president and general manager. "We will utilize this month to get a firm understanding of exactly where we are in the process. The figures are now in but we want to take a good look at what they indicate."'
Bills regroup for the Bengals [5:16 AM]
Toronto Star reports: '"It gets to the point where you're getting tired of being an average defence," said Spikes.'
Henry, Dillon likely to sit [5:15 AM]
Cincinnati Enquirer reports: 'The Bengals' plan would appear to be to run Johnson in Dillon's role as the featured back and spell him with Brandon Bennett.'
Spikes speaks about his decision to leave [5:14 AM]
Cincinnati Enquirer reports: 'Q: Are you surprised by the power Lewis has in the organization and what he has been able to do? A: "What has he done? The only thing I know is what the record (1-3) is right now."'
Ex-Bengal enjoys living life of a star [5:13 AM]
Dayton Daily News reports: 'Off the field, Spikes has become a celebrity. He's been interviewed by media megastars Jim Rome and Dan Patrick. He appears in ESPN commercials that trumpet the network's NFL coverage. And he's all over the Buffalo and Rochester TV and radio air waves. "That comes along with winning," Spikes said. "You can go out and hire all the best people (to promote you), but if you don't win, it's pretty much irrelevant."'
Eric Moulds has his own TV show [5:12 AM]
Mississippi Press reports: 'That's right, the Eric Moulds Show airs weekly on the Empire Sports Network across the state of New York. Here on the Coast and anywhere else outside of New York, the Empire Sports Network is available on DirecTV.'
Closeup: Chief Charlie Waters [5:11 AM]
Atlanta Journal Constitution reports: 'You have to get there to lose. So there is something to be said for just getting there. The day before the Super Bowl was always the best. The day after was always the worst. But it might happen this year. I thought that until [the Sept. 21 game] against the Dolphins.'
Spikes Psyched for Bengals [5:10 AM]
RNews.com reports: '"You got to go out and prove something," explained the Bills linebacker. "Two of the things I miss about Cincinnati are the friendships I built with some of the guys, and I miss the fans there also."'
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