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Buffalo Bills News - December 23, 2004

Marker Trio of Bills heading to Hawaii in February [8:51 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'The selections reflected the strength of the Bills. Their defense is ranked No. 3 in the NFL. Their special teams are first on kickoff returns, seventh on punt returns, third on kickoff coverage and 12th on net punting.'

Marker Williams, Burns split work with first team [8:51 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'It looks likely one of them will start against the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday.'

Marker Thursday's San Francisco Coverage [5:58 AM] reports:
49ers lean to using top pick (San Francisco Chronicle)
A rare postseason snub (San Francisco Chronicle)
Season is over for injured Carter, Winborn (Contra Costa Times)
Proof is in pudding -- zero 49ers in Pro Bowl (Contra Costa Times)
49ers turn to future after snub (San Jose Mercury News)
Throw two more on the injury heap (San Jose Mercury News)
Is top draft pick worth it for 49ers? (Santa Rosa Press Democrat)
Team shut out of Pro Bowl picks (Santa Rosa Press Democrat)
49ers representatives in the Pro Bowl: Zero (Sacramento Bee)
Pro Bowl snub of 49ers irks Ulbrich (Oakland Tribune)
Surprise! Donahue plans to use Niners' high draft pick (AP)
Niners' Carter, Winborn to miss rest of season (AP)
Niners' Carter, Winborn out for the year (The Sports Network)
49ers Say Thank You To Fans! (
Carter Joins Injured Reserve List (
Ulbrich Is 2004 Hazeltine Winner (

Marker Three Bills are Pro Bowlers [5:03 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: '"When you're first coming in, me personally, from a small school, my focus was, 'Please God, let me just stay in the league,'" said McGee, who won the kickoff return job from Antonio Brown in training camp and has been a smash hit with an AFC-leading 26.6-yard average. "To be able to go to the Pro Bowl and put that on my resume, it makes me feel that much (more proud)."'

Marker Bledsoe's passing could boost Bills [5:02 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'Bledsoe has bought into first-year coach Mike Mularkey's run-first offensive game plan this season and it's paying off. But with Willis McGahee and Travis Henry injured and out for Sunday's must-win game in San Francisco, it could be an ideal time for Bledsoe to deliver his first 300-yard passing performance since the second week of the 2003 season.'

Marker Bills backfield hits a fog [5:01 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: '"It's a great opportunity," said the former Alabama star. "We're not sure on anybody's status right now, but I have to be ready to go."'

Marker Playing scared is the way to play [5:00 AM]
Tonawanda News reports: '“When you play with the fear of losing and going back to where you were, which was not very good, and you know where you don’t want to go, it keeps you on the right path,” said Adams, who was selected to the Pro Bowl on Wednesday. “It’s a great equalizer, losing.”'

Marker Bills can’t afford a Christmas letdown [4:59 AM]
Lockport Union Sun and Journal reports: 'But missing out on a chance to even be in contention in the final week by losing to the 49ers? That would be tougher to swallow than any recycled fruitcake that is served this week. So while it truly may be better to give than to receive, the Bills have to make sure they’re not giving away a much-needed win against a clearly inferior opponent. The 49ers aren’t going anywhere this season. Let’s hope the Bills aren’t in that same sled come Sunday.'

Marker Buffalo (8-6) at San Francisco (2-12) [4:58 AM]
AP reports: 'Special teams, defense and a consistent running attack have helped the Buffalo Bills win five straight games and move into the thick of the AFC wild-card race. The Bills may have to rely more on the first two facets when they visit the San Francisco 49ers.'

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December 22, 2004

Marker Williams Ready to Go [9:50 PM] reports: '“It’s definitely exciting,” Williams explained. “But at the same time you got to keep things in perspective and remain calm and just go out there and do your job."'

Marker Bills Place Dorenbos on IR; Sign Brown [9:37 PM] reports: 'The Bills have also announced that the team has placed LS Jon Dorenbos on Injured Reserve. TE/LS Bradford Banta, who was signed Dec. 14, will now handle all long snapping duties.'

Marker Three Earn Pro Bowl Berths [9:37 PM] reports: '"I'm very surprised. I didn't think I would be as excited as I was until they called my name. Iit feels good," McGee said. "It will feel much better when I get over there and see my name on the back of the jersey, but it feels good."'

Marker Henry Declares Himself Out. Three Bills Make The Pro Bowl [9:36 PM]
WGR-AM reports: '"Why do you want to talk to me? I aint playing."'

Marker McGahee, Henry miss Bills' practice [5:30 PM]
AP reports: 'In a telephone conference call with San Francisco-area reporters later in the day, McGahee said he was ''pretty sure,'' when asked of his chances of playing against the 49ers. ''I just know that I've got to contribute,'' he said.'

Marker No gimmies in the NFL [5:28 PM]
WGRZ-TV reports: 'But the Bills should also pay attention to what happened to the Pats at Miami. Any NFL team is capable of beating any other, and especially at home. New England was a double digit favorite at Miami. The Bills are a double digit favorite at San Francisco.'

Marker Adams, Spikes and McGee selected to Pro Bowl [4:00 PM]
AP reports: 'In addition, cornerback Nate Clements, receiver Eric Moulds and defensive end Aaron Schobel have been selected as alternates.'

Marker Bills RB Henry rules himself out against 49ers [3:18 PM]
AP reports: 'Henry also revealed for the first time that he tore ligaments in his right ankle, adding he did not require surgery. The Bills had not divulged the extent of the injury, merely referring to it as a lower leg injury.'

Marker Bills Announce Pro Bowl Trio [3:17 PM] reports: 'The Buffalo Bills have announced that three of their players, DT Sam Adams, KR Terrence McGee and LB Takeo Spikes have been selected to represent the American Football Conference in the Pro Bowl, the NFL's annual all-star game.'

Marker Bills Must Avoid Letdown [2:50 PM]
WOKR-TV reports: 'Bills 34 49ers 20.'

Marker Winning in one dimension [11:31 AM]
Rochester City Newspaper reports: 'Somehow they've won five straight. The secret, according to coach Mike Mularkey, was to play one game at a time. You see, earlier in the season, the Bills made the mistake of playing multiple games at once. It was obvious to me while watching defenses sack Drew Bledsoe nearly every pass play. He just looked exhausted, as if he were playing six games concurrently. Well, that was precisely the problem. The last time against New England, they played about 10 games at the same time, while the Patriots played one. Buffalo amazingly found itself in multiple dimensions of the space-time continuum, and consequently, its players were one-tenth of the Patriots' players. So naturally, the Bills lost.'

Marker Injuries may give Williams a head start [8:53 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'But Williams was undrafted last April because of his size; he figured he'd catch on somewhere returning kicks and punts. Now he's on the verge of starting at running back. "I just want to be ready if they call my number," he said.'

Marker Tasker knows special group when he sees it [8:52 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"Let's face it, they're playing better than that group that I played with," Tasker, now a CBS Sports analyst, said Tuesday. "They're having as good a year as anybody ever had in Buffalo on special teams."'

Marker Party to benefit Wire's foundation [8:52 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'WGR Sports Radio 550 and Coca-Cola Buffalo are presenting the second annual Coy Wire Lazy Man's Christmas Party on Thursday at 5 p.m. at Flappy's Famous Edibles and Elixirs, 252 Delaware at Chippewa.'

Marker Wednesday's San Francisco Coverage [7:10 AM] reports:
First-time coaches fare much better (San Francisco Chronicle)
49ers are No. 1 (in draft) with just one more loss (Contra Costa Times)
Even former 49ers are not doing well (Oakland Tribune)
Barlow back as starter for 49ers; Rattay likely done for year (The Sports Network)
Seven Work Out For 49ers Tuesday (
49ers Flashback: September 13, 1992 (
Lord hear our prayers (

Marker First-time coaches fare much better [7:02 AM]
San Francisco Chronicle reports: 'Mularkey believes the Bills' season was salvaged in a 37-17 victory over St. Louis that began the five-game winning streak. Buffalo rallied after an early 10-0 deficit. "That was the defining moment that these guys are a special group," he said. "It's obvious that you have to be mentally tough when you overcome an 0- 4 start."'

Marker As Bills win, TV ratings rise [7:00 AM]
Business First of Buffalo reports: 'WIVB, had a 42.6 rating with a 66 share, meaning two out of every three TVs in the Buffalo area were tuned to the game. Since meters were introduced to the market prior to the 2000 season, only two games against drew more viewers locally. Those games were against the New England Patriots (44 rating) in November 2002 and the Miami Dolphins (44.3) in December 2002.'

Marker 49ers Game Preview [6:59 AM] reports: The Bills look to continue their improbable playoff run with a trip to the West coast to take on the San Francisco 49ers. The Bills are rolling with five straight wins, seven of their last eight, and eight of their last 10. The offense has struggled the past two weeks despite convincing victories and they may be without their best weapon as Willis McGahee will most likely miss the game with a hyperextended knee.

December 21, 2004

Marker 49ers Flashback: September 13, 1992 [9:35 PM] reports: 'The 49ers and the Bills combined for 1,086 yards, the fourth-highest total in league history. And they established their own NFL record, as well. For the first time, no punts were attempted by either team. "I do recall on the plane ride back home, walking back and telling Chris Mohr he wasn’t going to get a paycheck that week because he didn’t punt once in the game," laughed Buffalo’s head coach Marv Levy.'

Marker Bills & blankets bring holiday cheer [9:33 PM]
WGRZ-TV reports: 'Members of the Buffalo Bills, including star Takeo Spikes took time out to attend a holiday party at Children's hospital. The party was for families and children touched in some way by AIDS.'

Marker All Business for Bills Fullback Shelton [5:20 PM] reports: 'After a season away from football, Buffalo's 6-foot, 262-pound fullback is having a Pro Bowl year. Shelton is the ideal lead blocker, mixing power and leverage along with his size to help him blow up defenders at the point of attack. "As long as I'm doing my job and opening holes for the running back that's my reward," said Shelton.'

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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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