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Week 17: Jackson Powers Bills To Win
Rushing stats tell the story of win.
by Steve Saslow

Here are our position by position grades:

Quarterback:

Ryan Fitzpatrick threw three touchdown passes in the first half a nice slant pattern to Jackson, a bullet to Evans, and a perfectly thrown bomb to Owens. He misfired on three potential scoring passes to Owens and overthrew a bomb to Evans. He had some problems with clock management. He needed Jackson to call timeout when the play clock was running down on one play. He then was called for a delay of game penalty after a timeout. He finished with a sparkling 120.8 QB rating throwing for 155 yards on 16 of 25 passing. Grade A: Phenomenal considering the weather conditions.

Running Backs:

Fred Jackson needed 150 yards for 2,000 and finished with a whopping 212 yards rushing. He also caught his second touchdown pass of the season on a slant pattern in the end zone. How far has Marshawn Lynch fallen? Corey McIntyre got the garbage time playing time instead of him. Lynch dropped a pass, caught one for two yards, and had one carry for zero yards. He had one yard combined in the last two games. McIntyre broke out a 25 yard run and had 32 yards on four carries. Grade A+: Jackson got what he deserved, 1,000 yards.

Receivers:

Terrell Owens took a victory lap after the game as all signs points to his Bills career being over. He had four catches for 65 yards including a 41 yard touchdown reception. Lee Evans also had four catches and a touchdown. Shawn Nelson and Jonathan Stupar each caught a pass. Joe Klopfenstein caught a pass but couldn't haul in a perfect pass in the end zone. He was also called for holding. Grade B+: Did the job when needed in the first half.

Offensive Line:

The Bills ran a lot to the left side of the line anchored by Jamon Meredith and Andy Levitre with a lot of success. Richie Incognito got called for a holding penalty. They gave up no sacks and led the way for 248 yards rushing. Grade A: Nice game against Colts scrubs.

Defensive Line:

Aaron Schobel had a tackle for loss but missed a sack. Chris Kelsay had a nice tackle for loss in the first quarter and another one on the first play of the second quarter to force a punt. He recovered a fumble as well. Marcus Stroud and Spencer Johnson were quiet but there were no holes for the running game. Kyle Williams had a big tackle for a loss deep in Colts territory in the 2nd quarter and ended the half with a sack. He had seven tackles. Ryan Denney and Aaron Maybin each had an assist. Grade A: Blocked up the running game real well.

Linebackers:

Paul Posluszny led the way with 11 tackles. Chris Draft was quiet with one tackle. Orchard Park native Jon Corto got his first career start thanks to the decimated linebacking corps and had eight tackles. Grade A: Gave up just 25 yards on 16 rushes.

Secondary:

Rookie Cary Harris got the start at free safety with Donte Whitner sick. He had his first NFL interception against Peyton Manning no less! He was then beaten for 15 yards on a third down pass play to Austin Collie. He pulled in his second pick of the day later in the 2nd quarter as he took over where another rookie DB left off at that position. Reggie Corner had a nice open field tackle on a WR screen pass and broke up a late deep pass. Drayton Florence had a nice open field tackle for a loss late in the first quarter. George Wilson had five tackles. Ashton Youboty had an assist. Grade A-: Shutdown the passing attack but had help from the weather.

Special Teams:

Brian Moorman averaged 40.8 yards on five punts in very windy conditions. His net was just 34.8 yards though. Rian Lindell did pretty good in the weather conditions hitting three extra points and field goals from 31, 33, and 36 yards out. Roscoe Parrish averaged a paltry 4.5 yards on four punt returns. Fred Jackson returned one kickoff for 14 yards. The coverage units were good as they gave up a 23.5 yard average on six kickoff returns. Grade B: Did their part in the win.

Coaching:

Perry Fewell didn't coach like he had nothing to lose when they punted on 4th and 2 in Colts territory in the first half. The team did want to win one final game for him and came through. Alex Van Pelt had a good game plan for the weather conditions and they executed it perfectly. Bobby April's units showed they can play in the snow. Grade B: Nice way for Fewell to go out if he's done in Buffalo.



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