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Buffalo Bills News - April 22, 2004

Marker First-round team target lists [8:53 AM]
Fox Sports reports: 'Mike Mularkey and Tom Donahoe are keeping an eye on the QB situation with Ben Roethlisberger and Philip Rivers to develop behind Drew Bledsoe. At the same time, the Bills are interested in also building more talent around Bledsoe. Roy Williams would be very attractive at wide receiver if he remains on the board. On the defensive side of the ball, defensive ends Kenechi Udeze and Will Smith remain possibilities to upgrade their front four.'

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April 21, 2004

Marker Bills Re-Launch Website In Time For This Weekend's NFL Draft [10:42 PM] reports: 'The re-launch will take place this Thursday and feature vastly improved content, functionality, design, and exclusive contests. Visitors to the site will notice multiple top stories each day, more photos, audio and video of players, coaches and personnel, an interactive "view from your seat" map and a virtual tour of the stadium, and an improved message board for individuals to interact with Bills fans worldwide. The enhanced site will continue to serve as the best source for official team merchandise and tickets.'

Marker Chris Brown's 2004 NFL Mock Draft [4:31 PM] reports: 'WR Lee Evans - Washington
WR Rashaun Woods - Oklahoma State
QB Phillip Rivers - N.C. State'

Marker Giants' decision will have domino effect [8:53 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'It's well known the Bills are looking to get a quarterback at some point in the draft. They probably would select one with the 13th pick if one of the Big Three - Eli Manning of Mississippi, Philip Rivers of North Carolina State and Ben Roethlisberger - falls to them. Assuming the San Diego Chargers don't trade out of the No. 1 slot, they are expected to take Manning. After that, it's anyone's guess where Rivers and Roethlisberger will end up.'

Marker Wooden relishes new role as scout for Bills [5:15 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: '”For me, personally, this is a lot more difficult than playing,” he said. “When I was playing, I could rely a lot on my natural athletic skills. This is all mental. You aren’t just measuring a guy’s strength and speed and intelligence, you’re also trying to measure his heart and project whether he will be able to contribute to your team down the road.”'

Marker Bills prepare search for Bledsoe's potential successor in draft [5:14 AM]
AP reports: '''What you think is a franchise (quarterback), we may not think is a franchise,'' Donahoe said to reporters.'

April 20, 2004

Marker Bills move on without Clarett, Williams eligible for NFL Draft [5:33 PM]
AP reports: '''It doesn't complicate matters at all,'' Modrak said on Tuesday, a day after the court's ruling. ''We hung them up on the board. Now if they're not there, they're not there. We just take the plaques down and they're not there anymore.'''

Marker Player Perspective of Draft Weekend [10:46 AM] reports: '"We put our trust and faith in Mr. Donahoe and Mr. Modrak," said Bills guard Ross Tucker. "I think we're all confident that they are going to look at it from a business perspective and do what they think is in the best interest of the organization. Hopefully they can help make our team stronger and continue to get us more and more good players so we can have a winning season."'

Marker Another Schobel ready for NFL [10:46 AM]
Cincinnati Post reports: '"Aaron said the one team he never talked to was Buffalo. I visited about five other places but not here. I knew that they were in need of a tight end but -- you never know and (Bo) probably knows that more than most of the other guys in this draft."'

Marker Draft day fixation: The fast go first [5:18 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'Mr. Nobody was suddenly a somebody. Beebe was drafted in the third round by the Buffalo Bills and would go on to play nine seasons for the Bills, Carolina Panthers and Green Bay Packers, appearing in a record six Super Bowls.'

Marker Conaty keeping his life centered [5:17 AM]
Cherry Hill Courier Post reports: 'Conaty recalls that play as being the end of an era in Buffalo. "As a team and an organization they put all their eggs in one basket," he said. "They had overpaid some guys and, after that, they started cutting players like Bruce Smith and Andre Reed. In the locker room, there was a lot of disarray and disbelief, but life goes on."'

April 19, 2004

Marker Bills Select? [9:26 PM] reports: 'The 2004 draft may be Donahoe's most important in his four years with the Buffalo Bills. What will he do this weekend? Stay tuned.'

Marker Draft: The Third Schobel [10:05 AM] reports: '"If we play each other it really won't be that big of a deal," Aaron said. "It will be nice to see Bo before and after the game but I'd just be watching him when he's playing and he'd be watching me when I'm playing. With me and Matt it's a little different because we play directly against each other."'

Marker Donahoe's rep on the line in draft [5:17 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'If you were looking for a common thread to the struggles Donahoe’s last six teams have endured (39-57 combined record), the draft would be a good place to start. He hasn’t hit as many home runs as he did in the early and mid-’90s.'

Marker An all-out blitz [5:16 AM]
Hartford Courant reports: '"To many of us, and I include myself in this, it may appear that the majority of NFL players have a distorted sense of reality," Tucker said. "Not so. The life they live every day is their reality. Imagine what it's like when you've got to catch a plane in 10 minutes and there's 40 people lined up for an autograph."'
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Marker Sizing up the AFC East [5:15 AM]
Corpus Christi Caller Times reports: 'They are in a position to go in many directions. Rivers and Roethlisberger will likely go before the Bills pick. In the past three drafts the Bills have selected defensive ends with their second-round pick with mixed results. The Bills brass may have faith in their development, but if Smith or Udeze were available, they would be very tough to pass up. The same goes for Josh Reed, who failed to fill Price's receiver role. If Mike Williams slides to 13, the Bills would have to consider him. In the end, look for the Bills to grab Smith and look for a receiver in the second round and a quarterback next year.'

Marker Inside slant [5:14 AM]
CBS Sportsline reports: 'The Bills do like Rivers but if they don't have him among their 13 best players, they will stay the course and address three other areas of need: wide receiver, defensive end and defensive tackle.'

Marker Strategy and personnel [5:13 AM]
CBS Sportsline reports: 'The Bills have no experienced depth behind starter Mark Campbell, but the draft could add a very good prospect or two. Buffalo will start its hunt in the second round at the earliest and should have a shot at Georgia's Ben Watson.'

Marker Notes, quotes, anecdotes [5:12 AM]
CBS Sportsline reports: 'GM Tom Donahoe's three drafts with Buffalo have produced eight starters and 21 of 30 picks that are still on the roster (.700). "Nobody bats 1.000 doing this but you better bat more than .400, and if you do that, it's a pretty good average," he said.'

Marker Bills Team Report [5:11 AM]
Sporting News reports: 'The team is interested in adding a veteran linebacker who will provide needed depth. The challenge will be finding a quality player willing to accept a limited role. Buffalo is one of the few teams in the NFL with three every-down linebackers--Takeo Spikes, London Fletcher and Jeff Posey.'

Marker Roethlisberger is a hot prospect [5:10 AM]
Toledo Blade reports: “Most quarterbacks with skills that he has make it big in the pros,” said Buffalo Bills quarterbacks coach Sam Wyche. “There are occasionally some that don't make the transition, but when you break his game down and add his size and intellect, I think he's going to be a very good player.”

April 18, 2004

Marker If the Big Three are gone, can a QB save the day for Bills? [8:59 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'There only are two other quarterbacks available who will be taken on the first day - meaning in the first three rounds. They are Virginia's Matt Schaub and Tulane's J.P. Losman. The conservative scouts around the NFL like Schaub. The risk-takers like Losman.'

Marker Guessing games fill draft season [8:58 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'Look for the Big Three quarterbacks - Eli Manning, Ben Roethlisberger and Rivers - to be selected before Buffalo picks or moves up in the draft.'

Marker Bills look like a 9-7 team this season [5:17 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'Kicking off with our annual early-bird look at the Buffalo Bills schedule and projected record for the 2004 season.'

Marker This year, it's better to receive in the NFL [5:16 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'The Bills don’t need a No. 1 pass target — nine-year pro Eric Moulds is still among the league’s elite and is recovered from a nagging groin injury. But they do desperately need to jazz up a receiving corps that was a big part of the team’s slump to 30th-place rankings in both yards and points during last season’s 6-10 finish.'

Marker Strong draft still confusing for the Bills [5:15 AM]
Olean Times Herald reports: '“We have said publicly we want to take a young quarterback,” Donahoe admitted. “ And I don’t think our stance has changed. But when do you take him? How does the guy develop? What does he turn into? Who knows?”'

April 17, 2004

Marker NFL doesn’t want high schoolers [5:39 AM]
Olean Times Herald reports: 'And Donahoe doesn’t buy the argument that young players could be stashed on a roster as they learn and mature. “I don’t totally agree with it, if that’s what somebody’s thinking,” he said. “When you have a 53-man roster, you’d like to think all those guys can play. You may need them at some time during the year. To have two to four guys who are redshirts ... you’d be scared to death to put them in a game. I don’t think too many coaches want to be in that situation.”'

Marker Swap meet [12:16 AM]
CNNSI reports: Mike Williams, with his very average speed and a good, but far-from-great workout, might linger on the board even longer. Most personnel men now have him going somewhere in the teens, with No. 13 Buffalo said to be zeroing in him.

Marker Road trippin [12:14 AM]
CNNSI reports: New England at Buffalo, Week 4 -- Both teams will be coming off the dreaded Week 3 bye as they play their first AFC East division game of the season.

Marker Elite receiver class overshadows speedy Evans [12:13 AM]
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports: "There's nothing wrong with Lee Evans," Buffalo Bills assistant general manager Tom Modrak said. "I like Lee Evans a lot. The kid can catch and run." Modrak, a scout since 1973, was asked to consider the first wide receiver selected in the last 10 drafts and compare them to Evans. In chronological order, the list included Charles Johnson (17th overall pick), Michael Westbrook (4), Keyshawn Johnson (1), Ike Hilliard (7), Kevin Dyson (16), Torry Holt (6), Peter Warrick (4), David Terrell (8), Donte' Stallworth (13) and Charles Rogers (2). According to Modrak, he'd take Evans over five, he'd take four of the top picks over Evans and one was too close for him to call.

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