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Bills Hold On To Beat Lions

Drew BledsoeDefense Shines Again: The offense put together an inconsistent effort today as they were hot in bunches and stumbled early and late in the game. The defense shined once again as they seem to be finding their niche. They held the Lions offense in check during the second half and made one huge play to clinch the game. We breakdown the win with our position by position grades. Gameday Grades.

Bills Beat Lions: The Bills pulled to within 1/2 game of the AFC East lead with a 24-17 win over Detroit. Travis Henry scored two touchdowns but fumbled late in the game as the Bills were trying to run the clock out to give the Lions one last chance. The Bills didn't finish off the Lions when they had a chance and it almost cost them in the end. London Fletcher stuffed James Stewart on a 4th and 1 play to seal the victory as the defense shined on this day. Drew Bledsoe threw for 302 yards as Eric Moulds and Peerless Price each had over 100 yards receiving in the victory. Complete Story.

Injury Update: Three players got banged up in the game but all returned. Nate Clements suffered a hip pointer, Jonas Jennings was carted off but returned after suffering just a knee bruise. Keith Newman also went to the locker room for a while with a quad bruise. Injury Page.

Henry Still The Guy: Travis Henry scored two touchdowns and ran for 64 yards but lost a fumble for the sixth time this year. This one was different however, as it was the result of a ferocious hit. Henry did everything right technique wise. In his post game press conference, Coach Williams exonerated him for the fumble because of the hit and restated that Henry is the guy for the Bills.

Centers Streak Ends: Larry Centers streak of catches ends at 143 straight games as he was held without a catch today. He had one chance but couldn't pull in an overthrown pass by Drew Bledsoe on a third down pass. The streak was the third longest among active players. Centers said that sometimes the ball just doesn't go your way but the win was the important thing. The players were lobbying for Centers to get a catch on the last drive but it wasn't meant to be.

Gameday Weather: As we head towards November, today's game may see weather as a factor for the first time this year. There is only a 10% chance of rain but the legendary Orchard Park winds return. It will be a mostly cloudy day with the high temparture topping out at 48°. The winds will be out of the west at about 16mph. Not that strong for Western New York but it will only get worse as the season progresses.

Saturday October 26, 2002

Lions Injury Update: The Lions injury situation is improving for tomorrow's game they appear to be getting WR Bill Schroeder and TE Mikhael Ricks back for the game as both players practiced on Friday. While they get one receiver back, they may have lost another, Larry Foster injured his shoulder in practice. The Bills appear ready to have one of their own tight ends back. Dave Moore practiced again on Friday and will most likely be back in the lineup Sunday. Mike Williams is all but officially declared out for the game.

Friday October 25, 2002

Practice Squad Move: The Bills have released seventh round draft pick Rodney Wright and have replaced him on the practice squad with WR Clarence Coleman. Coleman was signed by the Bills as an undrafted free agent but he broke his ankle before training camp started.

Coach Honored: Coach Gregg Williams was honored as the Staples Coach of the Week for the Bills win over Miami last week. Staples sponsors the program in partnership with the NFL and CBS. The honoree is honored for his leadership in guiding his team to victory.

Bills Honor Canadian Fans: This Sunday's game will mark the team's annual Canada Day celebration. Each year the Bills, Seattle, and Detroit honor the fans from the north of the border one game a year. There will be a Canada tailgate party, the Canadian national anthem will be played with the Canadian mounted police on hand.

Williams Unlikely To Play: Mike Williams did not practice with the team again yesterday putting the likelihood of him playing on Sunday in serious doubt. Coach Williams said on Monday that how the lineman practices this week will go a long way in deciding if he would play. Antoine Winfield also will be out on Sunday as he is just doing some light stationary bike work. Dave Moore and Tony Driver do appear ready to return to action as they both practiced for a second straight day. Their return will help special teams. Injury Report.

Thursday October 24, 2002

Sunday's Game Soldout: The game on Sunday against the Lions if officially a sellout. That makes all four Bills home games soldout so far this year in time to lift the television blackout. Two others are very close to being soldout, the New England game next week and the Miami matchup in December. Only two of the eight home games have many tickets left and that is the final two against San Diego and Cincinnati.

Winfield Won't Play: Despite being listed as doubtful, Antoine Winfield admitted the obvious on Wednesday, he won't play against the Lions. He feels his best chance of returning will be after the bye week when the Bills play Kansas City on Nov. 17th. Winfield is rehabbing his knee at the stadium by riding a stationary bike. Mike Williams may also miss his second straight game as he did not return to practice on Wednesday. The other two questionable Bills did practice. Injury Report.

Wednesday October 23, 2002

Bledsoe Knows The Road Gets Harder: Drew Bledsoe held his usual Wednesday press conference today and spoke on a variety of subjects. He again talked about how a balanced offense with a strong running game and a good defense is the key to winning. A good running game also sets up one on one opportunities in the passing game. Bledsoe raved about Coach Williams saying he is delivering the right message to the team and is doing a great job. The team is confident but Bledsoe says they need to be confident about the coming game, not because of past performances but because what they are doing to prepare for the Lions. This would help avoid a letdown. He says the team needs to start a little faster. Bledsoe admits that it will get harder since the Bills will not sneak up on teams anymore.

Clements Honored: Nate Clements was named the AFC Defensive Player Of The Week thanks to his three interception performance against Miami. He becomes the fourth Bill, and first defensive player, to be honored this year. He is the third Bills corner to ever win the award. No other NFL team has won more than two awards this year. Clements joins earlier honorees, Drew Bledsoe, Travis Henry, and Mike Hollis.

Injury Report: The Bills have four players on the injury report with three players listed as questionable and Antoine Winfield listed as doubtful. Dave Moore, Mike Williams, and Tony Driver all have a chance at playing this eek. The Lions have nine players on the list, two has doubtful, four as questionable, and three are probable. Injury Report.

Bills Must Avoid Letdown: The Bills must avoid the classic letdown after the big win in Miami. Recent history shows the Bills play down to the level of their opponent, like they did against Houston two weeks ago. A victory over the Lions would put the Bills 1/2 game out of first place in the division. Game Preview.

Tuesday October 22, 2002

Bills Add Player: The Bills have signed defensive back Marcus Floyd to the practice squad. He replaced Ahmad Brooks who was activated off of the squad last week. Floyd was with the Jets for the first two games of the year before being released last month.

Lions Game To Sellout: The game against the Lions has just 500 tickets left almost guaranteeing a sellout. It needs to be officially soldout by Thursday at 1pm to lift the blackout for the fourth time this year.

Injured Players Not Out Yet: Coach Williams said on Monday that he would not count out Antoine Winfield, Dave Moore, or Mike Williams from Sunday's contest against Detroit just yet. Williams is walking better on his injured hamstring and the team is looking for a softer cast for Moore's broken hand. It would be an extreme longshot for Winfield to play just 9 days after undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery. Injury Page.

Monday October 21, 2002

Bills Contenders? In the aftermath of the Bills big win in Miami yeterday many people are saying the Bills are contenders now. The victory against Miami is big, but it doesn't mean anything if the Bills don't come out and beat the Lions at home next week. The Bills could easily get caught looking past Detroit to the grudge match with New England but they can't afford to let that happen. A win next week will put the Bills within a 1/2 game of the lead in the division with Miami having a bye. This team has played much better on the road then at home, the next two games is the time to step it up at home to put the Bills in good position at their bye week. If they don't win these games they may be pretenders that beat a banged up team instead of contenders.

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