Bills Get Big Upset Win Over Jets
Bills Down Jets 22-17: The Bills won their third game in the last four as they beat the Jets at home. The win marked the first victory over a team with a winning record and counts as a key win over a divisional opponent. Willis McGahee had his third straight 100 yard game in his third start racking up 132 yards on 37 carries. McGahee also scored on a 12 yard scamper. The defense played a solid game, holding the Jets to 88 yards on the ground and allowing them to convert only 2 of 10 third down opportunities. Sam Adams came up with a huge play in the fourth quarter when he stopped Curtis Martin in the end zone for a safety. Lawyer Milloy recorded an interception that led to a field goal. The Bills did not turn the ball over during the game and the offensive line did not allow Drew Bledsoe to be sacked. The strangest stat of the day was that Bledsoe had the longest run of the game for the Bills - 17 yards when he was flushed out of the pocket. The win will undoubtedly give the Bills momentum as they approach next Sunday's rematch against New England on a nationally televised game. Complete Story.
Complete Win: The Bills have now put together two straight wins. This one was against a quality opponent and took a complete effort by the offense, defense, and special teams. All three units grade out well for a second consecutive week. As they all played well in the final quarter to finish out the game. Gameday Grades.
Mike Williams Injured: Starting right tackle Mike Williams suffered a scary neck injury in the thrid quarter in a collision with a Jets player. The big man lay motionless on the turf for several minutes as a tem of medical personnel attended to him. He was carefully immobilized and put onto a backboard before being put aboard an ambulance that had come onto the field. Bills players huddled together in prayer as they reflected on the possible severity of the injury. Williams gave the crowd a tumbs up sign as he was loaded into the ambulance proving he had movement in his arms. Williams was not brought to the hospital - the ambulance took him to the locker room and he underwent x-rays. Marcus Price replaced Williams at the right tackle spot for the remainder of the game. X-rays on Williams' neck were negative and he will be further evaluated on Monday. While it appears that the injury was not as bad as feared, Williams' playing status for the week is unknown.Injury Page.
Saturday November 6, 2004
Wire, Reed Downgraded: Coy Wire and Josh Reed were officially downgraded to doubtful on the injury report and will in all likelihood miss the game tomorrow.
Motivation: Both sides claim they have motivation for this game. The Bills are motivated to revenge last month's last minute loss at the Meadowlands. On many occassions this week players were quoted as saying they owe the Jets one. The Jets say they have this game circled since they lost in Buffalo last year after coming off a big Monday night win over Tennesee. It will be tough for the Jets to get up for their third straight division opponent. This game may come down to who is motivated more.
Friday November 5, 2004
Vincent Move Possible: As we reported earlier, a report from WGR said that Troy Vincent will be moving to Safety when healthy. Coach Mularkey told the radio station today, that Vincent is working at both Safety and Cornerback and a move is possible but not set in stone yet.
Bills Make WR Change: Faced with the prospects of heading into the Jets game with just three healthy wide receivers, the Bills made a roster move today. They have signed Jonathan "Freddie" Smith off of their practice squad. To make room for him, they waived Drew Haddad. Smith was a 7th round draft pick of the Bills and has been on the practice squad all year. With Haddad struggling with a hamstring injury, and Josh Reed out with a knee injury, the Bills only had three wide receivers that were ready to go on Sunday. Haddad will likely return to the practice squad once he clears waivers. Depth Chart.
Reed, Vincent Likely Out: Josh Reed and Coy Wire did not practice once again making it almost certain that they will miss Sunday's game against the Jets. Troy Vincent practiced for the second straight day but was limited again, it is unlikely he will play Sunday either. Injury Report.
Vincent To Safety?: WGR radio is reporting that when Troy Vincent returns from his knee injury he will move to safety. He would replace Izell Reese at free safety and that move would leave Terrence McGee at cornerback. When Vincent signed with the club in the offseason it was widely speculated that at some point during his tenure in Buffalo he would move to safety but it wasn't expected in his first season. Coach Mularkey hasn't confirmed the move but has said recently that more personnel moves were likely.
Ritzmann Hurt: DE Constantin Ritzmann injured his foot in practice on Wednesday and was on the sidelines on crutches during yesterday's workout. He has been added to the injury report as doubtful. He has been inactive every week this season so far, so it is unlikely he would have played anyway. Drew Haddad returned to practice yesterday while Josh Reed and Coy Wire> rode the stationary bike. Injury Report.
Thursday November 4, 2004
Game Soldout: Sunday's game against the Jets is officially a sellout and the blackout has been lifted. The game will be on TV locally in Western New York. It is the fourth sellout in five home games this year.
Need Complete Game To Win: Drew Bledsoe opened his media day press conference talking about the play of Daimon Shelton. He says he's a quiet guy who brings a real physical style of play and is an outstanding fullback for the team. Against the Jets, they have to watch out for the tremendous front four that they have. He said they will help the tackles with chip blocks from the backs and tight ends. They will need to run the ball because of the great front four and the fact that it should be another bad weather game, making it three in a row at home. If the winds stay under 20 mph, Bledsoe feels he can throw the ball, last week was worse than that. He feels things are coming together for the team, they have cut back on the mistakes, especially last week in the red zone. He gave credit to the presence of referees in practice the last few weeks. Bledsoe feels the Bills can play with the Jets and feels like they owe them one but will have to play a complete game to beat them. They don't give you much, you have to earn it and play mistake free football to win. On Tim Euhus, he says he has good hands, and good speed, and is becoming a bigger part of the offense. He still has a lot to learn but will be a good player in the league.
McGee To Be More Patient: Terrence McGee said his AFC Special Teams Player Of The Week award was a credit to his blockers. He said his conference leading average could even be higher if he becomes more patient and Bobby April is working with him on that. He said it is a great feeling when he scores a touchdown on a return since he plays defense. He feels the touchdown against Arizona helped the team so much since it gave them the momentum back. On the Jets, he said the team needs to get a win, it isn't a matter of revenge for the loss last month. McGee struggled against Wayne Chrebet in that game. He may move back to his nickel back position this week if Troy Vincent can return to the starting lineup. He thinks getting Vincent back, along with the already returned Lawyer Milloy, will make a huge difference against the Jets this time around.
Losman Slowed: J.P. Losman seemed discouraged when talking to the media yesterday about the progress of his injury. Losman has a broken leg suffered in training camp and is still experiencing discomfort and pain when he tries to be mobile in the pocket. He has been upgraded to questionable for this week's game but would only be available in an extreme emergency Coach Mularkey said. The coach hopes to get him reps with the second unit in practice next week, he has been working with the scout team the last two weeks. Injury Report.
Wednesday November 3, 2004
Teague Practices Fully: Trey Teague had a full practice today and Troy Vincent worked with the scout team to test his knee. Drew Haddad, Coy Wire, and Josh Reed, they will be re-evaluated tomorrow and are all listed as questionable. It is still a wait and see approach with Vincent, they will see how he feels tomorrow. The coach doesn't forsee Reed playing right now but he will give it another day but his toughness wouldn't surprise him if he does play. J.P. Losman did as much work today as he did last week. He would only be available in an extreme emergency. He may get some reps in practice starting next week. They are all listed as questionable this week. Injury Report.
Milloy Will Help This Time Around: Coach Mike Mularkey addressed the media today, and said that Chad Pennington does the job by nickel and diming their opponents and it gets frustrating for the defense. He doesn't try to do too much and is successful. He feels it will be a little different with Lawyer Milloy back because of his experience. They can disguise things more and do more with the schemes. He feels Ross Tucker has done a great job filling in for Trey Teague and the o-line has improved tremendously. He praised the play of Daimon Shelton who is a devastating blocker and has good hands and run after the catch ability. The coach said there may be more surprises in store going forward like he did this past week when he played two defensive linemen on the offensive line. He feels Tim Euhus has progressed very quickly and is a good blocker, even better than they expected.
Bills Add WR: In a response to the depleted receiving corps the Bills have signed a second wide receiver to the practice squad today. The Bills added Kahlil Hill to the squad. He is the son of former Bill all-pro J.D. Hill. He was most recently in the camp of the 49ers and spent time on the practice squads of Atlanta, New Orleans, and Detroit. The Bills now have three receivers on the eight man unit as Hill joins George Wilson and 7th round pick Freddie Smith. They released OL Rodney Reed to make room for Hill. Reed was signed just last week.
McGee Awarded: Terrence McGee was named the AFC Special Teams Player Of The Week winner for his 87 yard kickoff return for a touchdown against Arizona on Sunday. He is the second Bill to receive the award this year. Brian Moorman got the award two weeks ago.
Big Test For Bills: The Bills have one two of their last three games but both wins were against bottom feeders in the NFL. They have a big test ahead of them Sunday. If they can knock off one of the top dogs in the division, it would go a long way in turning around the season. Complete Preview.
Tuesday November 2, 2004
Election Day: Well, it's Election day and Tony Bogyo follows the election theme as he looks at the strange things happening in sports and relating them to the big day today. One of them was the Bills victory over the Cardinals. It is something to savor because it may not last too long. Complete Story.
Monday November 1, 2004
Adams, Bannan May See More Time On Offense: Mike Mularkey felt the defense played extremely well but they were out of position on a couple of plays on the two touchdowns they did give up. He said this defense is tough to move the ball when they carry out their assignment and yesterday was no exception. He feels the offensive line lived up to the challenge he gave them by pounding the football in the game, they got stronger and stronger as the game went on. He used Sam Adams at tight end because his size gave them a bigger advantage. He feels he will use Adams and Justin Bannan more on offense after their success yesterday. Playing the two on offense was for specific plays that required their specific styles and was not a message to the offensive linemen. He felt a couple of mental errors cost them in their first trip to the red zone but they were efficient on their next four trips because everyone did their job. According to the coach, the combination of the play of Willis McGahee and the improved play of the offensive line has led to a more effective running game.
Corrections Made For Jets: Coach Mularkey told the media that he feels the team may fare better against Chad Pennington this time around because of the leadership being back on the field with Lawyer Milloy and the possible return of Troy Vincent. He feels the team has corrected many of the things they did wrong in the first meeting between the two teams.
Reed May Miss Time: Mike Mularkey spoke about the injury to Josh Reed and said he is awaiting MRI results but feels he will miss some time based on how sore he was yesterday. They also will attempt to get Troy Vincent on the practice field on Wednesday. He may practice fully depending on how he feels. Drew Haddad was made inactive yesterday because the weather conditions made them want an extra lineman active. They feel he will be ready to help out this week against the Jets if Reed is out as long as the hamstring feels good on Wednesday. Injury Page.
Red Zone Success: One of the keys to yesterday's matchup that we addressed in our preview was the battle between the Bills red zone offense and the Cardinals red zone defense that was ranked number one in the league heading into the game. The Bills had scored just four touchdowns in 16 red zone appearances this year. Yesterday, they matched that number on five trips into the red zone. Their first trip resulted in a field goal, their next four resulted in touchdowns. That is why they were able to score 38 points while only gaining 209 total yards in the game.
McGahee Gesture: Willis McGahee made a nice gesture after scoring his first career touchdown against the Cardinals. Instead of keeping the ball, he gave it to fullback Daimon Shelton for the solid block he made to spree him for the score.
Reed To Have Further Tests: Josh Reed will undergo further tests on his knee today. That should help determine is availability for this weekend's game against the Jets. Reed was seen walking around on the sidelines after he hyper-extended his knee on a punt return in the first quarter. He said he could have returned in an emergency situation. Injury Page.
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