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Buffalo Bills News - September 3, 2004

Marker Some tough cuts ahead for Bills [4:55 PM]
Olean Times Herald reports: 'Currently the Bills have four halfbacks — Travis Henry, Willis McGahee, Simonton and Williams — and three fullbacks — Daimon Shelton, Joe Burns and Luke Lawton — and only five of them figure to survive. In addition, it would seem either Rod Trafford or Tim Euhus, a fourth-round draft choice, won’t survive at tight end.'

Marker Gogolak's Style Changes Football [1:52 PM] reports: '"Big headlines in Buffalo, I still have the paper and everything else," Gogolak said. "None of the New York papers said anything about it. Just a little box score, you know. Gogolak, 57-yarder. Because of the true competition between the AFL and NFL, none of the papers ever, ever said anything about that kick, it's unbelievable. It's kind of strange you know."'

Marker First things first for Bills [8:52 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"It's got to stop," Mularkey said of the mistakes. "We've got to rectify it. They know. If you're at this level, you don't need to be reminded that you can't jump offside. I'm not here to remind them. I'm here to teach them that they can't do that. And let's figure out why they keep doing a penalty and let's fix that. We'll get it done."'

Marker No sense overreacting to QB injuries [8:51 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'They were apparently more interested in propping up Bledsoe's fragile self-confidence than having a proven backup who might actually challenge him for the job. Really, is Shane Matthews any worse an option than Travis Brown?'

Marker Williams making a run at third RB spot [8:50 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"I'm just thankful that I was given an opportunity to go out there and kind of show what I can do," said Williams, who ran for 63 yards on 12 carries last week at Indianapolis. "Coming into the game I knew I was going to get a lot of reps, so I just wanted to come in and play hard and try to show the coaches that if they decide to keep me, I'm going to do whatever it takes to help this ball club win games."'

Marker Better Bills lose again [5:01 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'Of course, the Bills (1-3) aren't going to be rolling anywhere if they don't start cleaning up their act. Buffalo was averaging eight penalties per game entering the night, and that total soared thanks primarily to a woeful performance by the special teams.'

Marker Friday's Detroit Coverage [5:00 AM]
TBD reports:
Healthy living (Detroit Free Press)
Healthy Joey essential to Lions' season (Detroit Free Press)
Final exhibit (Detroit Free Press)
'Madden 2005' says road woes end, but 5-11 looms (Detroit Free Press)
Lions alumni to host dance (Detroit Free Press)
Lions earn painful win (Detroit News)
Reserves make decisions tough (Detroit News)
Potential aside, Lions can't settle for anything less than .500 record (Detroit News)
Harrington needs a winner's swagger (Detroit News)
Defense hit hard with early injuries (Detroit News)
Talking with ... Teddy Lehman, Lions rookie linebacker (Detroit News)
Pyrrhic victory (Oakland Press)
A few Lions sat; a few more should've (Oakland Press)
TD catch 'a relief' for Kircus, who now awaits his fate (Booth Newspapers)
Injuries take luster off Lions' win (Toledo Blade)
Many happy returns (
Postgame quotes - Detroit Lions (
Postgame quotes - Buffalo Bills (
Post-game notes (
Photo Gallery #1 (
Photo Gallery #2 (

Marker Bledsoe trying to beat the clock [4:58 AM]
Washington Times reports: '"The focus is that when that primary receiver is covered that the quarterback immediately has instant recall of who to go to with the ball to save the sack," said Wyche, the former Cincinnati and Tampa Bay coach. "Instead of seeing someone covered and searching for a receiver, he's going right now to somebody. And if that guy by design is not there, he's got a guaranteed [dump-off]. Drew's working at it and doing well."'

Marker Detroit 20, Buffalo 17 [4:57 AM]
AP reports: 'Most importantly, the Bills (1-3) got out of the game healthy after losing two backup quarterbacks to injury last week. ``You want to come out of this thing for the real deal,'' Bills coach Mike Mularkey said. ``To me, it seemed like a long game. The third quarter was an hour, it felt like.'''

Marker Marion leaves game with knee injury [4:56 AM]
AP reports: 'Detroit Lions safety Brock Marion bruised his right knee on the opening drive of Thursday night's exhibition game against the Buffalo Bills.'

Marker Detroit 20, Buffalo 17 [4:55 AM]
Sportsticker reports: 'Buffalo's Shane Matthews, signed earlier this week to back up Drew Bledsoe, went 7-of-10 for 104 yards. Shaud Williams rushed for 78 yards and Willis McGahee scored on a short run for the Bills (1-3), who host Jacksonville in their opener on September 12.'

Marker Detroit 20, Buffalo 17 [4:54 AM]
The Sports Network reports: 'Shane Matthews ended 7-of-10 for 104 yards for Buffalo (1-3). Willis McGahee, who is battling Travis Henry for the starting running back spot, gained 24 yards on 11 carries with a touchdown.'

Marker Bills Drop Their Final Exhibition Game [4:53 AM]
WGR-AM reports: 'The most distressing thing about this game was the 17 penalties committed by the Bills. Mularkey's message on that front is not being heard. They also fumbled three more times.'

Marker Bills Fall in Preseason Finale [4:52 AM] reports: 'Newly signed Shane Matthews relieved Bledsoe and had a nice game for only being with the team since Monday. He was 7-of-10 for 104 yards, including a 51 yarder to Sam Aiken. That set up a four yard touchdown run by Shaud Williams in the third quarter. Williams led all Bills rushers with 78 yards on 18 carries.'

Marker Veteran Matthews Impressive in Bills Debut [4:51 AM] reports: '"He was pretty impressive," Head Coach Mike Mularkey said after the game. "I hope other quarterbacks don't get that mind set that you can be home with your wife and kids and can miss training camp and 48 hours later you can come in an NFL game and move a team."'

Marker Bills Offense Efficient, Scores on First Drive [4:50 AM] reports: '"It's obviously very good for us to come out and put together a nice drive," Bledsoe said. "To finish up the preseason for the first offense to put the ball into the end zone, that's what we've been needing to do. We finally put it together and avoided some of the mistakes and showed the kind of efficient offense we can be."'

Marker Postgame quotes - Buffalo Bills [4:49 AM] reports: '"Our special teams are just not getting the point across. It’s not effort, but some of the decisions they are making out there. We as coaches have to make that point clearer."'

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September 2, 2004

Marker Bills hope the hard knocks are over [8:52 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '"The big thing for them is to get some time working together because they haven't gotten many opportunities," Bledsoe said. "Obviously in a perfect world you'd like to be able to rest everybody right now. But in that situation, you're probably going to see a little more of them than you would have in a normal fourth preseason game."'

Marker Bills hobbled, hungry for TDs [5:04 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'Through three preseason games, Bledsoe and the first-unit offense have produced four field goals in 15 possessions. The other 11 series ended with eight punts, one interception, one fumble and one missed field goal.'

Marker Wire regains position as Bills' No. 1 strong safety [5:03 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: '"When Lawyer first came here, he took me under his wing and Lawyer and I have become the best of friends," Wire said. "He told me when he first came here that he would make me a good strong safety."'

Marker Inside slant [5:02 AM]
CBS Sportsline reports: 'Needless to say, many of the key questions that hovered over the Buffalo Bills heading into training camp after last season's 6-10 finish that cost Gregg Williams his job, were answered in a positive way over the past month. Unfortunately for the team and its die-hard fans, who haven't cheered a playoff team since 1999, a rash of late-camp injuries, an offensive line still in a state of upheaval and a schedule that's downright mean has tempered the enthusiasm just so heading into the regular season opener on Sept. 12 against Jacksonville.'

Marker Strategy and personnel [5:01 AM]
CBS Sportsline reports: 'Vagabond southpaw Greg Zolman, who has had an erratic camp, is expected to be cut after Thursday's final preseason game in Detroit.'

Marker Notes, quotes [5:00 AM]
CBS Sportsline reports: 'The Bills stole half of the University of Tennessee's starting defensive backfield with the signing of safety Rashad Baker and cornerback Jabari Greer, two draft-rated players who for various reasons went un-selected. Both street free agents have been impressive in training camp and should make the final roster and play.'

Marker Henry Won't Play at Detroit [4:59 AM] reports: '"If it was a regular season game I would play," Henry said. "Considering the starters aren't going to be playing that much, my guess is I think they'll hold me out."'

Marker Bills’ cut to 65 players wasn’t hard [4:58 AM]
Olean Times Herald reports: 'But Sunday’s reduction to 53 players might well be the toughest in team history. And the reason is injuries at quarterback.'

September 1, 2004

Marker Where is the love? [8:59 PM]
Rochester City Newspaper reports: 'Henry might not be as charismatic as Michael Jordan, but he's a fantastic, big-hearted, dedicated, and fearless player. It's time to show him some love.'

Marker AFC East football capsules [8:58 PM]
Sportsticker reports: 'Prediction: Buffalo looks like a .500 team, but if it can survive a November stretch against New England, St. Louis, Seattle and Miami in consecutive weeks, they could sneak into the playoffs.'

Marker Bills Face Lions for Third Straight Year [4:02 PM] reports: '"We've obviously had a lot of injuries this past week to our quarterbacks so that has changed some things," Zolman said. "Regardless of where I am on the depth chart, my job is to go out there everyday and do the best I can to help this team. I know what I'm doing in this offense. I assume I'll get a lot of snaps this Thursday."'

Marker Bills S Wire up for challenge to fill in for Milloy [4:00 PM]
AP reports: '''He's a guy you hate to see go down because of the passion he has for the game and what he means to our team,'' Wire said as the Bills prepare for their preseason finale at Detroit on Thursday. ''I'm taking this upon myself to not have a big drop-off from what we lost. I'm taking it very personally.'''

Marker Final preseason game important for Lions QB McMahon [4:00 PM]
AP reports: 'Even though Matthews will have only one full practice in Buffalo, he is expected to play against the Lions. ''If I was at training camp or not, I would look the same,'' Matthews said. ''I'm not real big or real strong, but I usually know where to throw it.'' Bills coach Mike Mularkey said Bledsoe would start the game and play a couple of series before being replaced by Greg Zolman.'

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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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