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Bills Roll Over Cardinals 28-14

AP Photo - Willis McGahee Conditions To Throw Were Harsh: Drew Bledsoe called it the hardest conditions he has ever played in as far as throwing the football goes. He said the easiest time to throw the ball was near the end of the game when it dried up a bit. He called it a complete team victory with the way the special teams gave them great field position all day. He praised the offensive line's blocking and the running of Willis McGahee as well. He called the kickoff return for a score a huge, pivotal play in the game especially since it came going into the wind. Bledsoe called the win a step for the team but they need to build on it and improve from here.

All Three Phases Made Them Effective: Coach Mularkey said he thought all three phases put it all together and made them very effective especially with the weather conditions the way they were. The coach believes the good week of practice carried over especially the red zone offense. On the play of Justin Bannan on offense, Mularkey thought he did a good job, especially on the first touchdown. He says Bannan is a quick, powerful guy with good leverage and they were looking for that kind of style on certain situations. He says he may get more action offensively going forward. He said if he can do a couple of things better than Lawrence Smith they will use him more although he doens't know the whole offense. He felt, Willis McGahee played well despite the fact that Arizona knew he was going to run the ball because of the weather conditions. He felt the special teams has played so well and today was no different, he called Brian Moorman the MVP of the game for his punting under the weather conditions. He felt the skills of Terrence McGee keep shining through as he has a knack for the big returns like he had today.

Special Teams Shine: The Bills special teams had their best outing since the Super Bowl years in the victory over the Cardinals. The Bills had a whopping 204 yards on returns. One kickoff was returned for a score and two long punt returns setup two other touchdowns. That along with solid punting by Brian Moorman made this unit the best on the field today. In this victory however, their was a total team effort. The offense did the job of putting the game away in the fourth quarter with three touchdowns and the defense dominated throughout. These efforts give every unit a passing grade. Gameday Grades.

Reed Injured: The big injury in the win seems to be to Josh Reed. The Bills decided to put two players back on an early punt return because of the wind. Reed returned it seven yards to the Cardinals 26 but immediately grabbed his knee. He hyperextended it and did not return. No word immediately on how long he'll be out. There seemed to be no other serious injuries for the Bills. Kevin Thomas and Izell Reese both limped off once but returned. Injury Page.

Bannan On Offense: The Bills came up with a new wrinkle to help their beleagued offensive line. Defensive tackle Justin Bannan saw a decent amount of action at left guard. He was called for one false start penalty but also did a nice job on one counter play to help spring Willis McGahee for his first touchdown. He was not the only defensive player to play offense. Sam Adams was in on the goal line offense for two plays on the final touchdown drive, and McGahee ran behind him for a score.

Bills Win Big: Drew Bledsoe threw fourth quarter touchdown passes to Eric Moulds and Tim Euhus as the Bills pulled away enroute to a 38-14 win against Arizona. Special teams were truly special in this game as Terrence McGee returned a kick for a score for the second time this year. Nate Clements had two long punt returns to setup scores as well. Willis McGahee gained a hard 102 yards but found the end zone twice in the rout. Complete Review.

Gameday Weather: Another November weather day in Western New York for the Bills battle with the Cardinals today. Temperatures will be in the low 50's but the winds will be howling at 24mph out of the west southwest making the temperatures feel in the low 40's.

Saturday October 30, 2004

McGee Should Play: Terrence McGee was able to practice yesterday and says he will be able to play despite injuring his ankle against Baltimore. The injury may force him out of his kickoff return duties though. If he can't return kicks Josh Reed will be deep on kickoffs. This would be a blow as McGee leads the AFC in kickoff returns and is third in the NFL. Trey Teague, Drew Haddad and Troy Vincent did not practice. Haddad is expected to be a gametime decision while Teague and Vincent will most definitely be out once again. Jonas Jennings is ready to go on Sunday and his backup Marcus Price should also be available. He practiced yesterday as well. Injury Report.

Friday October 29, 2004

Secondary Hole: With the return of Anquan Boldin and the injuries to Troy Vincent and Terrence McGee the Bills may be in trouble with a huge hole in the secondary Sunday. Vincent is all but out this week and McGee is questionable. If he can't go, Kevin Thomas will start. He is a decent depth player but the real problem will be when they go to the nickel defense. Rookie Jabari Greer will get his first extensive playing time in that defense if McGee can't go.

Teague, Vincent Held Out: Trey Teague, Troy Vincent, and Terrence McGee were all held out of practice again yesterday. Vincent did do some light running and McGee did some side work on the stationary bike. There has been no changes to the Bills injury report. As expected, the Cardinals have upgraded Anquan Boldin to probable and he should make his season debut on Sunday. Injury Report.

Thursday October 28, 2004

Game Blacked Out: For the first time in the last 12 home games, Sunday's game with the Cardinals will be blacked out in Western New York. Some 6,500 tickets remain for the game as the 1:00 deadline to lift the blackout passed.

Bills Need Distractions Behind Them: With all the talk about the running backs this week, the Bills need to focus at the task at hand. The Cardinals may be 2-4 and have lost 16 straight road games but they will come ready to play. If the Bills don't bring their 'A' game they could fall to 1-6. Drew Bledsoe has started defending his play as we reported yesterday. That indirectly called out the play of the rest of the offense, it remains to be seen how that will effect certain players. To top that off the Cardinals will have all-pro WR Anquan Boldin back this week as he is expected to be upgraded to probable later in the week.

Wednesday October 27, 2004

Practice Squad Move: The Bills have added OT Rodney Reed to the practice squad. He started 14 games for LSU in 2003 and was with Atlanta this summer before being released. To make room for Reed the Bills released QB Greg Zolman from the squad.

Seven On Report: The Bills listed seven players on the injury report. Three are doubtful, three questionable, and one probable. In contrast, only two Arizona Cardinals are on the report. Drew Haddad was a late add as questionable after injuring his hamstring in practice today. Jonas Jennings is feeling better and is probable and should start Sunday. Terrence McGee is questionable with a foot injury that can leave the Bills secondary real thin. He is replacing Troy Vincent who is doubtful. Injury Report.

Mularkey Say McGahee Is Starting: Coach Mularkey addressed the running back situation in his media day press conference today. He said Willis McGahee will start and when he needs a blow Travis Henry will take his place. Henry will have a role in other personnel groupings, almost identical to McGahee's role previously. He said, in his opinion nobody was promoted or demoted, they are just trying to get a spark. He did say this isn't the only position that this may happen to. McGahee has been able to get the extra push but in defense of Henry he has been bothered by his injured foot, Mularkey said. When there hasn't been a hole there, McGahee has done a better job. He said in his mind, he has starters that don't start games, and that is the case with Henry. He stopped short of calling his remarks on the team's website earlier as a misunderstanding, when he named both of them starters. He re-iterated what Bledsoe said about Henry having a great practice today and being a true professional about it. If McGahee doesn't produce, than Henry will come in. He said everything will be re-evaluated each week, not just at running back but at each position. He was emphatic that he's not being indecisive and that McGahee is starting.

Haddad Injured In Practice: Trey Teague, Troy Vincent, Terrence McGee, and Marcus Price did not practice today. Drew Haddad came up limping at the end of practice and he was being evaluated. J.P. Losman will be upgraded to doubtful this week and did more work today.

Bledsoe Defends His Play: Drew Bledsoe was candid with the media when talking about his play. He said he is the quarterback for a team that is a power running team that has not scored a touchdown on the ground. He said the emphasis is to get rid of the ball quickly, but he has been hit as much as anyone in the league. Seven of his interceptions, five have come on tipped balls and he feels only two were his fault. He is trying to do everything he can based on what he has been given, and in some instances he feels he has done what he can. He looked at it, being honest with himself and in many games he's done all he could, although he admitted in the Baltimore game he didn't. He said he's been searching for the last six weeks on how to fix the mental mistakes that have been inexcusable. Talking about Arizona, he said they are playing very well, and the Bills will have to play well offensively to get it done. He said he was almost arrogant about how good the offense could be coming into the season but that just hasn't been the case. He still feels confident about the team and doesn't prepare himself to actually lose a game and they continue to prepare positively and he felt they had a great, up tempo practice today.

Henry's Been A True Professional: Drew Bledsoe addressed the running back situation in his media day press conference today. He said Willis McGahee has done some good things for the team, it is a difficult situation for Travis Henry and he has everyone's respect in the organization, so it is not an ideal situation. He called Henry a leader without even saying much in the locker room. Bledsoe said that Henry is acting like a true professional. His attitude has been tremendous right down to today's practice.

Henry Says McGahee's The Starter: Travis Henry told the media today that Willis McGahee's really the starter no matter how they word it as co-starters. He said when his number's called he'll go in and do what he can do. He said they are trying to get this thing turned around and whoever is in the rhythm will stay in the game. He will come in if McGahee doesn't get into a rhythm and if he gets into a rhythm he'll stay in the game. Henry says he knows he's a starter and a good back in the league and whatever happens happens. He said he's not worried about the offseason, he will do what he can to turn this thing around. He said he's not bitter by the decision but admits that he's not happy but he has a job to do and is focusing on the final 10 games and then they'll see how it plays out.

McGahee Says He's Just Filling In: Willis McGahee says he has one thing to do and that is going out and making plays. He's expected to get the start this week even though they are both "co-starters". He says they can both co-exist together. He did admit splitting time will take longer to get into a rhythm, and he hopes they play together at times. He feels that Henry is the legitimate starter and he is filling in for now. It is up to the coaches how they will rotate both players.

McGahee, Henry Co Starters: Coach Mularkey put an end to the running back controversy...sort of. He announced today that both Willis McGahee and Travis Henry will start Sunday against the Cardinals. He told reporters that he is going to use McGahee since he has given the team a spark and gaining yards when there has been no holes to run through. He wants to see if that will be the difference this week. This may be making this sticky situation even stickier. It is quickly becoming reminiscent of the great QB debate between Doug Flutie and Rob Johnson. I guess the Bills now have no. 1 and 1A running backs. What do you think? Take our poll on the homepage and let us know.

Decision Today: Willis McGahee says he's starting Sunday but the Bills have yet to confirm it. Coach Mularkey should fill us in during his media day press conference today. Stay tuned to Bills Daily for updates throughout the day.

Must Win At Home: The Bills are still licking their wounds from the loss to the Ravens but now is the time to turn the page on the 2004 season if they are going to gain any sort of respectability this season. Arizona comes to town on Sunday sporting a big win against Seattle. The bottom line is, if the Bills are going to save some face this season it needs to start by beating the 2-4 Cardinals at home on Sunday. Complete Preview.

Tuesday October 26, 2004

McGahee To Start: Willis McGahee told Sporting News Radio today that he will be starting on Sunday when the Bills take on the Arizona Cardinals. Coach Mularkey has yet to officially announce who will start but his silence spoke volumes on the subject after the game on Sunday. Depth Chart.

Jennings Should Practice: The reason Jonas Jennings was a surprise inactive with his sprained ankle on Sunday was his inability to push off. That is pretty important for a left tackle. Coach Mularkey hopes with the extra rest he will be able to practice tomorrow. The team also hopes that Trey Teague can begin practicing tomorrow as well. Injury Page.

Throwback Jerseys Possible: Tom Donahoe said that the Bills are looking at the possibility of using a throwback jersey next season. In answering a question on the Team's website, he said they are designing one and will seek league approval to use it next season.

The Future: Is it time to look at the future? The Bills are going nowhere this year so should they shake things up? An offensive line shuffle may be in order along with a change at running back. When J.P. Losman is healthy, should the future begin immediately? Tony Bogyo takes a look at these questions in his latest commentary and then take our latest poll question on the homepage. Complete Story.

Monday October 25, 2004

Losman 2 To 3 Weeks Away: Mike Mularkey spoke to the media today and said that J.P. Losman will do some 7 on 7 drills but he is still at least two to three weeks away from playing. He was dressed yesterday just to give him the experience of being a part of the team and warmups. He also said that Troy Vincent is probably not going to practice full bore this week either. He dodged the question about a QB controversy since Losman isn't even ready to compete. Injury Page.

Need To Chip Away: After reviewing the films, Coach Mularkey said they had some errant throws, and some mental mistakes in the loss to the Ravens. He also called it poor officiating on the 93 yard interception return. Drew Bledsoe said yesterday that there was pass interference, and he tried to get the call. Mularkey said today their were two blatant pass interferences on the play that weren't called. He hopes they can chip away and knock one problem out at a time. He feels the offensive struggles are in the red zone but he doesn't feel the offense is in that much trouble since they have moved the ball well in the second half the last two weeks. They just need to get better in the red zone.

Henry Totes Company Line: Travis Henry seems to know the fact that his days as a feature back is for all intent and purposes over. He said he was surprised the he wasn't a bigger part of the offense yesterday, and his injured foot wasn't a factor. He said he's obviously going to have to deal with the situation all year and toted the company line saying they are all in this together and they need to keep working to turn this thing around. As we reported yesterday, Coach Mularkey would not commit to Willis McGahee as his number one back but his silence at the podium spoke volumes about the future of the running back position.

Losman Era? Coach Mularkey would commit to one player at the podium yesterday. He said Drew Bledsoe is his quarterback. This question won't be going away anytime soon. Bledsoe was awful against the Ravens and J.P. Losman suited up for the first time in his career as the emergency quarterback. He is expected to continue progressing and may be ready to play in another week or two. That's when the QB debate will really shift into high gear.

Milloy Makes It Through: Lawyer Milloy made it through his first game of the year fine. He tested out his new lightweight cast and it made it through the game without any problems. He was as aggressive as he always has been and doesn't expect any further problems. In other injury news, Marcus Price made it through the game despite suffering from a sore knee. Willis McGahee had to have his ribs taped up after the game. Injury Page.

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