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Inside The Bills

Tasker: “It has to happen now” for EJ Manuel

Posted by johnmurphyshow on February 27, 2015 – 11:34 pm

On location tonight from (716) Food and Sport for Friday night’s show with a large crowd in attendance. We began the show with the news of the day from One Bills Drive and around the league. We listened in on Thursday’s conference call with ESPN Draft Analyst Mel Kiper, Jr. who discussed this year’s running back and tight end class, scouting quarterbacks, and what possible mid-round QBs might be worth taking.pic

Former Bills special team’s ace and Wall of Fame member, now CBS NFL Football Analyst Steve Tasker joined us on location to talk about the team. He talked about his broadcasting career on CBS, now entering his 18th season with the network. He went on to discuss the current Bills team including the quarterback situation and the opportunity for EJ Manuel.

IMG_2005“This is a guy who is making himself ready even when Kyle Orton was the starter. This is a guy who felt like he was ready to step in if Kyle Orton got hurt but you have to prove it. It’s got to happen. Right now, he’s the only guy and if you need more motivation than that to put your best foot forward, you’re not the guy you are. We know he is. We don’t have to tell EJ this. He knows all of this.”

Tasker also talked about his former General Manager Bill Polian who will be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame this summer.

Bills cornerback Nickell Robey called in at the bottom of the first hour. Robey has been busy this offseason working towards earning his degree from USC and training with teammate Robert Woods. He discussed the changes to the team this offseason and the staff that remains, including his defensive back coach Donnie Henderson.

Nickell Robey“Coach Henderson is a very cool coach, especially when you get to know him as a person and you get to know his style. He’s more of a father figure in some cases. I know we’re all grown men in the NFL but he understands the life on an NFL player. He connects with us and we’re able to match wits with each other. He picks our brain and we pick his brain and it’s always business to get better and reach the ultimate goal.”

Finally, NFL Media Reporter Judy Battista called in to talk about this weekend’s NFL Competition Committee Meeting and their look into video replay and defensive pass interference. The penalty has been under heavy scrutiny, especially during the playoffs this past season. Battista weighed in on the potential changes, which include making the call a 15-yard penalty and applying video replay review. She spoke with the NFL’s VP for Football Operations Troy Vincent about that very issue.

“His point was that it’s a potentially huge play but pass interference is very much a judgment call. It’s happening very quickly and rather than make it reviewable, do you solve the problem of this is too big of a play and it’s in the officials’ hands late in the game and you really don’t want that. Do you solve the problem by, instead of having it a spot foul as it is now, you make it just a 15-yarder? That was the context where he raised that. I wouldn’t say that will be an imminent change like that.”

Battista also shared her thoughts on the Bills signing of guard Richie Incognito. To hear that and the rest of Friday’s John Murphy Show from 716 Food and Sport, click here.


Posted in Inside the Bills

Tonight – Join JMS from (716) Food and Sport

Posted by johnmurphyshow on February 27, 2015 – 3:55 pm

JMS_(716)_remote_Social

Join The John Murphy Show at (716) Food and Sport at the HarborCenter tonight, Friday, February 27, 2015 from 7-9pm. Former Buffalo Bills Player and current NFL CBS analyst Steve Tasker is making a guest appearance. We will also hear from current Bills cornerback Nickell Robey. Stop by and bring the family for some food, football talk and giveaways. See you tonight!


Posted in Inside the Bills

Kiko Alonso: “It’s a great time to be a Bill”-JMS

Posted by johnmurphyshow on February 25, 2015 – 9:45 pm

We return to the airwaves for live radio on Wednesday. The free agency period kicks off 2-weeks from today, so we began the show asking the listeners their thoughts on what position group the Bills should target. There were plenty of responses to that topic from offensive line, to running back, to even quarterback.

Kiko AlonsoHe’s a player we haven’t heard from in a while. Bills linebacker Kiko Alonso checked in with us. Alonso missed all of last season with a torn ACL he suffered back in July. He has been rehabbing since and says he anticipates he will be “one-hundred percent before training camp.” Alonso talked about this past season’s defense with his absence and the linebackers that stepped up mentioning Preston Brown and Nigel Bradham’s emergence. He says he’s “stoked” to have Rex Ryan on board and is ready to get back on the field in preps for the 2015 season.

“I’m just trying to get back. It sucks to be on the sideline all year. It just gives me that much more drive to get back. At the same time, you have to be careful and not push too hard because the ACL is a long rehab. You have to find that balance.”

NFL writer at Sports Illustrated Chris Burke called in to the show. Burke recapped last week’s Combine by putting together his All-Combine Team which included Division III’s Ali Marpet from Hobart College. He went on to give his thoughts on the Bills hire of Rex Ryan, which he says puts the Bills “close to must-watch territory.”

Rex Ryan“I think Rex himself is close to that territory. He’s an energetic guy and his teams always play hard even this last year. That was not a very good roster at all in New York but up through the end of the season they were competing and going all-out. He’s a fiery guy and I think from that standpoint, they (The Bills) will be entertaining and it’s a team like we saw last year that’s not far away.”

Finally, Tony Villiotti from National Football Post joined us to discuss his recent article on What to Expect in Free Agency and why free agents are of modest importance in building a team. If they do pan out, the number of those players who have an impact is small. He also talked about the quarterback trends in the league and why the good QBs don’t normally end up in free agency and that teams should take the road of the draft to find their guy.

To hear more from Villiotti and the rest of The John Murphy Show, click here.


Posted in Inside the Bills

Brinson: Combine Winners and Losers – JMS

Posted by johnmurphyshow on February 23, 2015 – 9:32 pm

The show returns to the One Bills Drive after our week in Indianapolis at the NFL Scouting Combine. To recap, we listened in today Monday’s Combine conference call with ESPN draft analyst Todd McShay. McShay weighed in on who he thinks might pull ahead in the race for the number 3-quarterback in the draft and the running backs that could be available in the middle rounds.

Bills defensive tackle Corbin Bryant joined the show at the bottom of the first hour. He talked about his second season on the Bills defensive line, the changeover with the coaching staff, and why he and his teammates are excited to “adapt” to a new defensive scheme. He then went on to discuss his involvement this offseason with the NFLPA Externship, where he’s working with Under Armour, in hopes of building experience for life after football.

Corbin Bryant“One thing I’ve learned in life is that you have to continue to learn. Football is not forever even though I love the game and I love playing on Sunday’s. I use the offseason to try and learn as much as I can about different fields so when that times comes, I’ll be ready.”

Circling back to the Combine, we brought in CBS Sports Senior NFL writer Will Brinson. Brinson’s recent article on the site took a look at the NFL Combine Winners and Losers. Brinson talked about the quarterback class with an interesting take on Jameis Winston’s on-field issues rather than his off-field red flags. He went on to say he was disappointed in what he saw from the running back group last week in Indianapolis but did say there’s plenty of talent to get a worthy pick in the later rounds.

“This is a group with some second, maybe late first if you really need a running back but probably second and third round talents where once again, we’re going to see teams that need running back help that are able to go in the draft instead of overpaying in free agency, pick up a young guy that they can plug and play that they picked up in the second or third round, which has become the sweet spot for running backs in the NFL these days.”

To hear that and the rest of Monday’s John Murphy Show, click here.


Posted in Inside the Bills

Polian on Bills QB Quest

Posted by johnmurphyshow on February 18, 2015 – 11:01 pm

IMG_1970After being at the helm of Super Bowl teams featuring Jim Kelly and Peyton Manning, Bill Polian knows what a franchise QB looks like.

And the soon-to-be Pro Football Hall of Famer is keeping tabs on Buffalo’s search for a winning QB. Polian was a guest on The John Murphy Show Wednesday at the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis. He strongly believes the Bills should an experienced, veteran presence in their quarterback room.

“There has to be a veteran, there’s no two ways about that,” Polian said.  “Greg Roman’s going to take the right approach. If EJ Manuel can do it, Greg will put him in a position to do so because he’s not going to put a huge burden on him. It has to be the right veteran and the process has to go forward.  We’ll find out come September.”

Besides adding a veteran, Polian also thinks the Bills should take a long look at the QB prospects in this year’s draft, even if Jameis Winston and Marcus Mariota are not going to be available.

“Obviously the two top guys are not within reach now, because of the lack of a first round draft choice,” he said. “But who knows, there might be somebody down below who’s the answer. Frank  Reich was a third round pick, Joe Montana was a third rounder, Russell Wilson was a third rounder.  Maybe there’s somebody there who will eventually be the guy.”

Buffalobills.com Combine coverage is presented by NAPA Auto Parts.


Posted in Inside the Bills

Combine: Rex Ryan, Bill Polian, & More-JMS

Posted by johnmurphyshow on February 18, 2015 – 10:03 pm

From the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis. Taking the show on the road for the next three days. The day began with Bills head coach Rex Ryan who spoke to those in attendance. Later, the offensive linemen and tight ends came to speak to the media contingent. We heard from tight end Maxx Williams from Minnesota and Duke offensive guard Laken Tomlinson.

DSC_2729Coach Ryan was able to sit down with us at the bottom of the first hour. He talked about the new additions to his coaching staff with high praise for assistant coach/running backs coach Anthony Lynn. He shared his thoughts on recent free agent visit Josh McCown, EJ Manuel with the new offensive system, and the signing of guard Richie Incognito. Ryan went on to discuss the team’s path for the offseason, starting with the draft to free agency, doing so as a collaborative effort from the top down.

“The great thing about Doug Whaley and I is that we see things very similar. We’re pretty much on the same page. Obviously I’ll prepare and watch all the players as well and have my two cents but all the decisions will be a Bills decision and I will say this, there are three things you can count on with all decisions made by this organization and I truly believe this. It’s based on three things, it’s the team, the team, and the team. When you base decisions on that, what’s the best interest for the team, you generally make the right decisions.”Bill Polian

WHAM-TV Sports Director Mike Catalana gave us a local perspective on what he took from Rex Ryan today and the team’s approach to solving the quarterback position. He also talked about some of the Bills needs this offseason and his thoughts on what they should focus on in this year’s draft, specifically the tight end position and the offensive line.

Former Bills General Manager and now Hall of Famer Bill Polian sat down with us to discuss his time in Buffalo, how close he came to returning to work for the Bills organization, and his thoughts on his upcoming Hall of Fame induction. Polian talked about the nerve-wrecking wait to hear his name called.

“We were told we might hear by 4:30 and 4:30 came and went and then 5 O’clock came and went, then 5:30 came and went. My wife said, well this isn’t looking very promising. I said well you can’t lose something you never had anyway. Then there came a knock at the door. Everything is relative because Tim Brown and Jerome Bettis have been waiting a long, long time so I’m very fortunate that we only had to wait an hour or so.”

Tom TelescoFinally, Western New York native and Chargers GM Tom Telesco joined us to round out the show. Telesco finished up his second season in charge in San Diego and talked about his team falling just short of the playoffs. He weighed in on the addition of undrafted University at Buffalo grad Branden Oliver and his role filling in for the injured running backs last season. Telesco then went on to talk about his homecoming, returning back to his hometown and grabbing a win over the Bills back in September and what it means to have his mentor, Bill Polian join the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

To hear all of that and more of Wednesday’s John Murphy Show, click here. The show will continue coverage Thursday and Friday as we will be broadcasting live from 12pm-3pm on-site at the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis.

Buffalobills.com Combine coverage is presented by NAPA Auto Parts.


Posted in Inside the Bills

Jim Monos: Getting to Know the Prospects – JMS

Posted by johnmurphyshow on February 13, 2015 – 9:16 pm

We close out the week continuing our look into next week’s NFL Scouting Combine with a solid lineup dealing with just that. Before that, we reached out to the listeners and asked them to share their choice for the most-underrated player on the Bills roster. We received plenty of feedback on that topic from kicker Dan Carpenter to Nigel Bradham to special teams standout Marcus Easley.Chris Johnson, Preston Brown

Bills linebacker Preston Brown came by the studio to talk about his past rookie season, what the offseason has been like so far, and his thoughts on the new coaching staff. Brown also looked back at his experience at last year’s Combine and weighed-in on the pressure that was felt to produce in order to raise his draft stock.

“It’s crazy. You want to impress because that’s something you watch growing up. You turn on the Combine and see the guys running the forty, so that’s something you want to do but it’s the whole week with the interviews and the testing, it’s everything. You have to be prepared for the whole time they’re watching you.”

Brown said that he believes he improved his draft position with his performance at last year’s Combine.

monosAt the top of the hour we were joined by Bills Director of Player Personnel Jim Monos. Monos discussed upcoming free agency, the process of signing Richie Incognito, and what lies ahead of the staff at next week’s Combine. Monos said the team’s draft board is pretty much set as they’ve done their work on watching player film but now is the time to get to know the prospects first-hand before April’s draft approaches.

“This is the time to get to know them a little bit better as far as spending time with them, interviewing them, getting to know how much knowledge they have of football, spending time at their pro days, bringing them in for visits. Now, it’s about getting to know the player a little bit more.”fl-bommarito-training-camp-021412i

Finally, sticking with our Combine coverage, we reached out to Fitness Trainer Pete Bommarito who owns and runs Bommarito Performance Systems in South Florida. There, he has been training approximately 80-collegiate athletes who are getting ready for the intense mental and physical pull that the NFL Combine brings. Through his innovative regiments, Bommarito has helped players draft stock rise through their performance at both the Combine and their respected Pro-Days.

To hear that and the rest of Friday’s John Murphy Show, click here.


Posted in Inside the Bills

Steve Almond: “Against Football” – JMS 2/12

Posted by johnmurphyshow on February 12, 2015 – 9:39 pm

Winding down the week here at One Bills Drive. We began tonight’s’ show hearing from head coach Rex Ryan, who spoke this morning on WGR550 , discussing Richie Incognito, quarterback EJ Manuel, and what his keys are to a successful 2015 season. We asked the listeners for their opinion on free agency and what position groups should be targeted by the Bills as March 10th approaches.

Vertical JumpAs we gear up for next week’s NFL Scouting Combine, we reached out to the President of National Football Scouting Jeff Foster, who manages the combine in Indianapolis. Foster spoke on the growth of the event over the years and the process of how teams utilize it to scout the top prospects in the draft. He also addressed the setup of events and the balancing act that goes with servicing those teams and players.

“We feel like it’s one of our jobs to protect the integrity of the football event while the entire event continues to grow. Some of the circus aspects of it, we try to make sure happens in and around the football pieces. So, whether that’s after we’ve cut away from the field or when the players are moving to different aspects. As you know, the combine was created many, many years ago with the number one priority being the medical evaluations and that’s really still true today. From a team perspective, the medical evaluations and the interviews are as important if not more important than anything else that we do here.”

against football picSteve Almond, a longtime football fan, explores both the positives of loving the game that is the NFL and the dark side of the game in his book “Against Football: One Fan’s Reluctant Manifesto.” Almond joined us at the top of the hour to weigh-in on why he has gone against the grain in asking why there is so much support for a game that has so many issues surrounding it. He deals with the criticisms of the football and questions its importance in American culture, challenging himself and those that love the game.

“Why do we as fans feel that it is OK for us to consume this form of entertainment when one of the known by-products of it is that the guys who play, who we worship when they’re on the field, when they leave that field, many of them are going to wind up with brain damage. There’s also the question of the economics of it. I think it’s wrong that the NFL as a non-profit entity, the power that they hold, they use essentially to force politicians to publically fund stadiums.”

Rex RyanFinally, we were joined by Jeff Larsen, a segment producer for NFL Films. Larsen shared his thoughts on the recent passing of NFL Films founder Ed Sabol. He also talked about his recent project, supplying the sights and sounds of Super Bowl XLIX in the NFL Network series, Sound FX. Larsen discussed the final drive of the game and the emotions that were displayed after the Patriots won the Super Bowl. He then went on to talk about his time dealing with Rex Ryan when he was part of the group that put together the Emmy Award winning HBO’s Hard Knocks during the NY Jets 2010 training camp.

“When people come up to me and talk about Hard Knocks they usually remember Rex Ryan and his language but just the fun entertaining personality of that team and of that series.”

To hear the complete John Murphy Show, click here.


Posted in Inside the Bills

Wood: Incognito will bring element of toughness

Posted by johnmurphyshow on February 11, 2015 – 9:43 pm

 

Back live on the air tonight. We began the show asking the listeners their thoughts on the upcoming free agency period and what the team should do with their own players who are ready to hit the market. On that note, we heard from Jerry Hughes who talked about his offseason options, why Buffalo would be his first choice to sign with, and if the franchise tag is a possible option.

Eric Wood

Our first guest was Bills center Eric Wood. Wood talked about his offseason, the anticipation of rejoining his teammates, and interacting with the new coaching staff. He also shared his thoughts on this week’s addition of guard Richie Incognito. Wood and Incognito were here together back in 2009 and he talked about their relationship and shared his opinion on his potential teammate.

“I think he will bring a lot to the line. He will bring an element of toughness. He’s always been known as a tough, aggressive player. His last true season with the Dolphins, before the whole mess that went on, he was a Pro Bowl guard. The coaches, the GM, everybody talked about wanting to bolster the offensive line and I think giving Richie a second chance gives us the opportunity to do that immediately.”

The QBAt the top of the hour, we were joined by FOX Sports College Football Analyst and author Bruce Feldman. Feldman came on to discuss his book, “The QB: The Making of Modern Quarterbacks.” In the book Feldman uncovers the difficulty teams have on finding the perfect quarterback and why most of the time those teams strike out on trying to develop their “guy.”

“The wiring that a Peyton Manning has is so unique and I think he’s been blessed with some of the preparation. These guys are just really rare. It’s the hardest position in the world and the most glamorous and a lot of people want to play it. Ultimately it gets weeded out. I’ll be honest, the quarterback that you see sometimes, you can say there are a lot of reasons to really like this guy and then all of a sudden you get into games and it’s not all together there.”

Finally, with the majority of talk tonight about free agency we dialed up Mike Ginnitti, the editor and founder of Spotrac a site that deals with player contracts, team salary caps, and yearly salaries. He came on to discuss just that and what that means for the Buffalo Bills and their needs. Ginnitti weighed in on where they stand in relation to the salary cap and where they rank in the league when it comes to free cap space.

Doug Whaley

“We’re able to say that the Bills are spotted to spend about three and a half million on their draft picks this coming May. When we’re including that and the current roster, the Bills have just under 30-million in estimated cap space heading into free agency here and that’s for the top 51-players on the roster which is all that matters between March and September. Right now they’re eighth (in the league). They are top ten and in good shape and I expect them to be busy here.”

To hear more from Ginnitti and the rest of Wednesday’s John Murphy Show, click here.


Posted in Inside the Bills

Darlington: Incognito “a statement signing” – JMS

Posted by johnmurphyshow on February 9, 2015 – 9:59 pm

The NFL offseason has officially begun and the Bills made some noise over the weekend with the signing of offensive guard Richie Incognito. We began the show asking the listeners their thoughts on the offensive line addition and shared Monday’s statement released by team owner Terry Pegula.

Richie IncognitoJeff Darlington from the NFL Network joined the show to give his opinion on the Incognito signing. Darlington spoke with the veteran guard over the weekend after it was announced he would be joining the Bills. Darlington has a relationship with Incognito after he wrote a lengthy feature article on him back in August of 2013 before his suspension, “The NFL’s Dirtiest Player Comes Clean.” He talked about how the offensive lineman has turned things around and is “ready to roll” now a part of the Buffalo Bills.

“He will surprise a lot of people up there with how likeable he is. When he is up in Buffalo and you get to know him you will see what a perfect match he and Rex Ryan are for one another. I don’t think it should be understated that Rex Ryan sees a guy that is looking for vindication himself. I’d be willing to say that Rex Ryan views this as a statement signing, despite the fact it’s going to take some criticism. I think that Rex Ryan looks at this saying, we’re going to bring in this guy that wants to reclaim his reputation. I want to prove that I’m a great head coach. This guy wants to prove that he’s a decent person. We can do this together and we can toughen up this team in the process.”

Kelly GreggKelly Gregg, former Ravens defensive tackle and now sports talk show host on The Franchise called in at the bottom of the first hour. Gregg played his senior year at Oklahoma and then 9-years in Baltimore under Bills head coach Rex Ryan. He talked about how Ryan’s personality relates to his players and how he has always been a “straight shooter.”

“He treats everyone the same. I remember we played in Buffalo in 2006 and Marshawn Lynch went over 100-yards and I’ll never forget, he (Rex Ryan) had me, Haloti Ngata, Terrell Suggs, Ed Reed, Ray Lewis and called us out in front of everybody in the meeting. Some defensive coordinators will say, oh Ray Lewis, a Hall of Famer. If Rex wasn’t getting his money’s worth he was going to call you out in front of your peers.”

Gregg added that he is now “the biggest Bills fan because of my man Rex.”

Branden OliverFinally, we caught up with Chargers running back and University at Buffalo grad Branden Oliver. Oliver finished his rookie season with San Diego as an undrafted free agent getting ample playing time when he filled in for the injured Ryan Matthews. He recapped his rookie campaign and talked about his return to Buffalo and playing against his former UB teammate Khalil Mack.

To hear the entire Branden Oliver interview and the rest of Monday’s John Murphy Show, visit buffalobills.com/johnmurphyshow or check it out above.


Posted in Inside the Bills

Henderson: Gilmore “is a shutdown corner” – JMS

Posted by johnmurphyshow on February 4, 2015 – 9:37 pm

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Back on the air with live radio Wednesday night. Defensive back coach Donnie Henderson stopped by to be our first guest. Henderson discussed why he’s glad to be back coaching in Buffalo and to be reuniting with head coach Rex Ryan and defensive coordinator Dennis Thurman. He went on to talk about the players he has on the roster which included high praise for corner Stephon Gilmore, who he confidently stated “is a shutdown corner.”

Stephon Gilmore, Demaryius Thomas

“He can take one half of the field away. Whatever side he’s on, that side has been eliminated. They question his ability a little bit. They like to see a shutdown corner but I’ll tell you what, look at how many times they throw the ball at him. Look at how many catches are over there, number one. Find out the yardage that’s been accumulated by the receiver and I’ll bet you won’t see too many, 30 to 40 yards the whole game. That’s pretty good, I guarantee you.”

 

Henderson also talked about Leodis McKelvin, Nickell Robey, and the temperament of safety Aaron Williams.

240px-RoyFirestoneHSJuly09

At the top of the first hour, Roy Firestone called in. The sports columnist, journalist, performer, and actor talked about his role in Jerry MaGuire and even went into his spot-on impressions of the sporting world greats including Howard Cosell, Mohammad Ali, Charles Barkley, and even Keith Jackson’s famous, strung out “fumble!” call. Firestone is in midst of promoting his collaboration with Icon Trips where you can book a luxury Costa Rica vacation with Bills Legends Jim Kelly, Thurman Thomas, and Bruce Smith.

 

 

Finally, Bills head athletic trainer Bud Carpenter joined the show. The Bills were recently honored as the top training staff in 2014 by the Pro Football Athletic Trainers Society in conjunction with the Ed Block Courage Award Foundation. Carpenter, who has been on the Bills staff for the past 30-years talked about the honor and the gratification of being recognized by their peers.

 

Anthony Dixon

“It’s such an honor. You puff out your chest some and you say hey look we’re representing our guys. There’s 120-some guys that we are representing when you go to that award in Baltimore, called The Ed Block Award. You talk to all the athletes there representing their teams and their courage for coming back. It sets a standard for ourselves that we want to live up to that not just this year but continue that way.”

 

To hear more from Carpenter and the rest of Wednesday’s John Murphy Show, click below.

 


Posted in Inside the Bills

Mike Lodish: Sharing an NFL Record – JMS 1/30

Posted by johnmurphyshow on January 30, 2015 – 9:50 pm

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A jam packed Friday edition of the show, gearing you up for Sunday’s Super Bowl in Arizona. We began by hearing from NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, who addressed the media during his state of the league address. He spoke on a variety of issues including the ongoing Patriots ball-inflation investigation, the relocation policy and the interest of a team in Los Angeles, and the importance for the Bills to look into a building new stadium in the near future. We also heard from Bills running back Fred Jackson who continued his radio-row tour down in Phoenix. He talked about EJ Manuel’s progression and why Rex Ryan will be a contributing factor for the team’s push to the playoffs.

Super Bowl Football

Our first guest is a familiar name to Bills fans, a six-time Super Bowl participant, former Bills defensive lineman Mike Lodish. Lodish played in all four of the Super Bowl runs with the Bills in the 90’s and then two more with the Denver Broncos. He will now share that NFL record with Patriots QB Tom Brady who will be playing in his sixth this coming Sunday. Lodish talked about giving up his sole possession of the record after 15-years.

lodish-new

“I was hoping deep in my heart it wouldn’t happen. To be the only guy and the irony is that I’m this 10th round, undersized d-lineman that worked his butt off and made it. Didn’t get all the accolades. That wasn’t me. It was just good old hard work that I made it every year. It’s not a bad guy to share the crown with. He’s (Brady) got a pretty good looking wife that we can talk to maybe. He’s a pretty darn good football player himself. I have to be a class act myself here and congratulate him. He’s truly a great player.”

 

Lodish is promoting his after-football endeavor, selling his mother’s peanut brittle recipe under his startup company, Lodish Champion Brittle.

 

At the top of the hour we continued the Super Bowl talk with Auburn, NY native and Patriots play-by-play voice Bob Socci who will be calling his first Super Bowl. Socci shared his in-depth look into this year’s Patriots and the all-around role tight end Rob Gronkowski can play for the New England offense.

Super Bowl Football

“He does a lot of different things simply by being out there. To attract the defense attention helps get Julian Edelman, Danny Amendola, Brandon LaFell, and Shane Vereen open for Tom Brady. He’ll have a big impact not only in the passing game but also as a run blocker, too. If the Patriots are going to have success running the ball against the Seattle’s defense, Rob Gronkowski will play a pivotal part in that.”

 

Finally, we turned it over to Michael Grey from 710 ESPN in Seattle to get a Seahawks perspective. He talked about Marshawn Lynch’s character during the week and why he’s a leader in the Seahawks locker room. Grey then went on to discuss quarterback Russell Wilson, who looks to rebound from his uncharacteristic play during the NFC Championship game against the Packers.

Russell Wilson

“That was by far and away his worst game as a pro. He’s never thrown four interceptions before. Something was off and with the extra week to prepare and the way they do things, especially with Russell Wilson, I anticipate him to be in the lab looking at every single angle and every single inch of film and making sure that he is ready to go because they absolutely cannot do that again. If the Seahawks turn the ball over, they’re going to have a real hard time with these Patriots even more so than they did against the Packers.”

 

To hear more from Grey and the entire John Murphy Show from Friday, click below.

 

 


Posted in Inside the Bills

Vic Carucci: Polian Saw a Bigger Picture-JMS 1/29

Posted by johnmurphyshow on January 29, 2015 – 9:03 pm

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The Super Bowl is just days away and plenty of action going on down in Arizona. We started by hearing from Bills head coach Rex Ryan, who was in attendance on radio row. He joined Sirius NFL Radio and talked strongly about bringing a championship to Buffalo, winning with a strong offensive line, and how that could help quarterback EJ Manuel. Also having a vocal presence was Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch. After days of silence, Lynch spoke up with some strong words for the media scrum surrounding him.

Marshawn Lynch

 

At the bottom of the first hour, we were joined by Buffalo News columnist and Pro Football Hall of Fame voter Vic Carucci. Carucci, representing Buffalo, discussed the chances of former Bills GM Bill Polian who is a finalist for this year’s induction in the new contributor category. Carucci broke down the voting process and shared his arguments for his presentation on why Polian should enter the Hall.

Bill Polian

“He took teams that were either broken or starting from scratch and built them into contenders. He did this with three different teams. In the case of two of those teams, he built teams that went to multiple Super Bowls. He was the chief architect of those teams and I think that takes a rare skill to be able to fix tea to the degree that he did and bring something from the bottom up.

 

Bills Insider Chris Brown sat down earlier in the week with Bills defensive coordinator Dennis Thurman. Thurman talked about his first encounter with Rex Ryan, the players on the Bills roster, and what his plans are for bettering an already solid defensive unit.

 

To hear the entire sit down conversation and the rest of Thursday’s John Murphy Show, click below.

 

 

 

 

 

 


Posted in Inside the Bills

Jim Monos: “A game plan for the QB” – JMS 1/22

Posted by johnmurphyshow on January 23, 2015 – 12:19 am

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Our final night here at the Reese’s Senior Bowl in Mobile, Alabama. We wrapped up the week attending the final padded practice for both squads. Afterwards, we caught up with Pittsburgh offensive lineman TJ Clemmings. He has been climbing the ranks recently and is looking to solidify his stock in front of the pro personnel in attendance. Clemmings is an interesting prospect who made the switch from the defensive line to the offensive line and is embracing the attacking style of play.

Senior Bowl North Practice

“Really being able to move people and finish guys. That’s what I’ve prided myself on this past season at Pitt. I’ve done it fairly consistently throughout the season. Mauling somebody, I guess you can say I’ve done it a couple of times so if that’s what people are connecting me with then I’ll accept that.”

The Senior Bowl is considered to be the first connection to the NFL offseason and that holds true for the Bills Director of Player Personnel Jim Monos. He is here scouting for the draft but also is looking forward to bettering the roster through upcoming free agency and the trade market. Monos discussed the options he now has with the new ownership and coaching staff that brings confidence in quarterback EJ Manuel.

EJ Manuel

“He’s going to have different coaches again and learning a new system already. That’s not the traditional way of how you develop players but this is what the situation is and we’ve got to get it done.” Monos said “The offensive coordinator Greg Roman, he’s excited to do some stuff and he’s been creative enough with guys that aren’t traditional drop back passers. It’s exciting to know that these guys (David Lee and Greg Roman) have a game plan for the quarterback.”

At the top of the first hour we were joined on-set by Josh Norris, NFL Draft Analyst for NBC Sports and Rotoworld. He’s been studying this year’s Senior Bowl group. Norris talked about the offensive tackles in this year’s class and said that tackle La’el Collins from LSU is the best overall prospect here at the Senior Bowl. Switching to the other side of the ball, Norris weighed in on Danny Shelton, the defensive tackle from Washington. He also said he wouldn’t be surprised if the Quinten Rollins, the converted basketball star turned cornerback, becomes a first round pick. Norris went through the other options for the Bills including running backs and quarterbacks and mentioned Alabama’s Blake Sims as being the best quarterback during the team portion of this week’s practice.

Preston Smith, La'el Collins

In the final half-hour, we caught up with Bills Director of College Scouting, Doug Majeski. Majeski talked about the talent that can come out of the Senior Bowl and mentioned former participants and now Buffalo Bills starters LB Nigel Bradham and OT Cordy Glenn. He went through a few specific players from various position groups on this year’s roster and how the team’s scouts will break down what they’ve collected here this week.

Last but not least, we chatted with NFL Network Analyst Charles Davis who has been part of the network’s Senior Bowl coverage all week. He shared his thoughts on this group and who has stood out during the week. To hear more from Davis and the complete John Murphy Show from Thursday, click below.


Posted in Inside the Bills

Doug Whaley: Completing the Roster – JMS 1/21

Posted by johnmurphyshow on January 21, 2015 – 11:28 pm

Senior Bowl

 

Our week continues in Mobile, Alabama, the site of the Reese’s Senior Bowl. Both the North and the South squads went through their second practice of the week leading up to Saturday’s game. Quarterback is a hot topic for the Bills and we caught up with Garrett Grayson, Colorado State’s signal caller. He’s one option for the Bills which led us to ask the listeners what’s the best way to bring in QB competition? Through the draft, free agency, or trade? Various responses on that topic.

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We had the chance to sit down with Bills General Manager Doug Whaley. Whaley, in attendance at the Senior Bowl, watching practices and interviewing the players to find out what “makes them tick.” He talked about creating competition on the roster and finding ways to do so without a first round pick. Whaley also talked about completing the quarterback picture before the team heads into OTAs and training camp.

 

“We’re exploring every option. Anything from the free agent market, to the trade market, to the draft, to unrestricted free agency. So, we’re going to explore every avenue possible. One, just out of sheer numbers. We have two guys on the roster now and we can’t go to camp with just two. We’re going to add two, maybe three. There’s nothing that we’re not going to explore.”

Garrett Grayson, Bryan Bennett

Whaley also weighed in and reflected on the coaching search and why he feels Rex Ryan is a perfect fit for Buffalo.

 

At the top of the hour we were joined by Ben Austro, the editor and founder of Football Zebras. Austro joined us to talk about last weekend’s under-inflation of footballs by the Patriots during their game with the Colts in the AFC Championship game. He talked about the possible advantage and what possible sanctions might be come out of it from the league.

Blake Sims

An old friend of the show, Greg Gabriel, former NFL scout and now contributor for National Football Post sat down on-set to share his opinions on this year’s Senior Bowl. He recapped the past two days of practice and shared his praise for defensive tackles Chris Davis from Iowa and Washington’s Danny Shelton. He also weighed in on the quarterbacks and how Alabama’s Blake Sims jumped out at him, saying “he’s probably the most sound mechanically.”

Finally, we circled back to the Bills front office as we caught up with the Director of College Scouting, Kelvin Fisher. Fisher went down the list of possible needs for the team and what players stuck out during the first couple days of practice here at the Senior Bowl. Fisher also talked about the underclassmen that have declared for this year’s draft and the scouting process on sorting through the added talent. Overall, Fisher said that the Bills are in a good position to “reload not rebuild.”

 

To hear more from Fisher and the rest of Wednesday’s guests, click here.


Posted in Inside the Bills

Rex: “We want gym rat mentality guys” – JMS

Posted by johnmurphyshow on January 20, 2015 – 11:26 pm

Ladd Peebles Stadium

It is day two on-site at the Reese’s Senior Bowl in Mobile, Alabama. It was the first day of practice for the players Tuesday afternoon. Post-practice, we caught up with North team defensive tackle Carl Davis, who comes from Iowa. He weighed in on his first practice.

Rex Ryan Senior Bowl

The Bills staff was also on hand, including head coach Rex Ryan. Ryan sat down with us to discuss his first week on the job and run down the list of recently hired assistant coaches. He also talked about his first interaction with the team’s scouts and pro personnel. He opened up about what type of players he’s looking for as the team kicks off their first hands-on scouting process.

“We want gym rat mentality guys. We want guys that love the game. Those are the things we look for and certain style of play, you know, a physical player. I think that represents our football team and our community.”

Ryan also said he will adjust to what he does defensively to fit the personnel. “3-4, 4-3, that’s what we do. We’ll play anything that it takes to win. It doesn’t matter.”

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Newly hired quarterback coach David Lee, also in attendance, joined the show to talk about his return to Buffalo. Lee was on Chan Gailey’s staff a few years ago and coached Ryan Fitzpatrick. He talked about grooming current Bills quarterback EJ Manuel and the patience that goes along with bringing up young quarterbacks in the league, adding that “we just have to cut him loose and let him go play.”

The Senior Bowl pays off for some players and that holds true for Bills linebacker Nigel Bradham. He was on the South roster back in 2012 coming off of his senior year at Florida State. Bradham talked about performing in front of those representing the NFL and if players find it somewhat intimidating.

Nigel Bradham

“It depends on what kind of player you are and what kind of mindset you have. For me, I was the type of the guy it kind of motivated me because I had that hunger in me where I wanted to showcase that I was one of the top linebackers out there. I wanted to put my best out there so they could see what I could do to put me in the best situation in the future.”

Finally, fresh off his first Senior Bowl practice, Yale running back Tyler Varga joined us. Varga, primarily a running back has done some work at fullback as well and discussed his versatility. From Kitchener, Ontario, he said he’s been to a few Bills games growing up near the area and talked about the more memorable games he has attended. He went on to talk about playing at a smaller football program and is excited for the chance to show what he has against the nation’s top talent.

Tyler Varga, Jef Luc

“It’s all about chances. Having the opportunity to put yourself on display, that’s all I’m asking for. I’m trying to put my best foot forward and give it everything I have and just until the tank is empty every day.

Varga signed off his segment with an “Oh, Canada and Go Bills!” To hear the rest of that interview and the rest of the John Murphy Show from Tuesday, click here.


Posted in Inside the Bills

Kicking off Senior Bowl Week – JMS 1/19

Posted by johnmurphyshow on January 19, 2015 – 11:00 pm

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On the road for the week as we touch down in Mobile, Alabama as practices are set to begin for this weekend’s Senior Bowl. Monday, players and NFL team personnel all congregated at the Renaissance Hotel and that includes Bills National Scout Chuck Cook. Cook sat down with us to talk about finding the right type of athlete that can fit into a team’s scheme. He discussed the importance of players responding to instruction from NFL coaches and NFL situations they will be put through during their time here.

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“We want to see the intangibles, obviously in the interview process but we want to see how they react when they step up and have to play better competition. It’s huge.” Cook said. “It’s another test. NFL coaches can throw stuff at them and see how they respond to it. Usually they do. Some smaller schools start a little slower but we’re looking for the improvement through the week.”

 

Cook went on to mention specific Bills players that stood out in the past at the Senior Bowl, specifically linebacker Nigel Bradham who had a breakout year in 2014 and offensive tackle Cordy Glenn.

 

At the top of the hour Dane Brugler, the Senior NFL Draft Analyst for CBS Sports, called into the show. He gave an overall analysis of the Senior Bowl. His recent articles on cbssports.com dealt with the top-10 offensive and defensive players whose stock could rise by their participation here in Mobile. He talked specifically about Baylor quarterback Bryce Petty, who is looking to solidify his spot as the top Senior QB.

Bryce Petty

“To me, this is Bryce Petty’s week. A chance to show scouts what he can do outside of that spread, shotgun offensive attack. At Baylor it was so much pitch-and-catch. You watch him, he barely had to move his feet. Going down to Mobile this week, he will have a chance to show that he can go under center. He can process information, go through his progressions, use his vision, use his eyes. Does he have the pocket mobility? How does he handle himself under pressure? There are a lot of question marks with Bryce Petty but he has a chance to be that top senior quarterback. A big part of that evaluation will come this week.”

 

Speaking of Petty, he spoke to the media late Monday afternoon. We heard from him along with the Senior Bowl Executive Director Phil Savage.

 

We also caught up with Bucky Brooks, the Bills second round pick in 1994 and former scout. Brooks is now an NFL Analyst on NFL.com. He talked about why the Senior Bowl is so important to scouts and other pro-personnel. Brooks also broke down some positional groups and weighed in on what he calls a strong defensive back group in this year’s draft.

 

To hear that and the complete John Murphy Show from Wednesday, click here.


Posted in Inside the Bills

Kim Pegula: The Process of Hiring Rex Ryan-JMS

Posted by johnmurphyshow on January 16, 2015 – 9:57 pm

We return to the airways to round up a busy week here at One Bills Drive. We began the show with a special guest, Bills owner Kim Pegula. Kim called in to go over a variety of topics, including the process in hiring new head coach Rex Ryan.

Terry Pegula, Kim Pegula

“Rex almost was a candidate because obviously his name was all around. We didn’t really give much thought to him. We interviewed a lot of people before him. He came in and we were pleasantly surprised at how down to earth he really was in person, his love of the game, and what he said he really wanted to do with life and where he wanted to help us being part of the team. That really resounded very well with Terry and I. It was a little bit of a surprise, I’m going to admit because he was not a candidate we really had on the top of our list.” said Pegula “He really came in and really elevated himself to that top position.”

 

It’s been three months since taking over ownership of the team and Kim discussed her and Terry’s impressions so far. She also talked about her role on the NFL Foundation Board

Erik Pears,Eric Wood

At the bottom of the first hour, Bills center Eric Wood joined us to share his thoughts on the Bills new hire. Wood talked about Coach Ryan’s love for the offensive line, his new offensive coordinator Greg Roman, and why he is more excited than he has ever been heading into the 2015 season.

 

“I’m excited to have Coach Ryan in the building. His enthusiasm, his passion, will be great for us. From a lot of guys I’ve spoken to, we’ll love playing for Rex Ryan and that fires me up.

 

At the top of the hour, former Bills cornerback Butch Byrd called in to discuss the 50th anniversary of the 1965 AFL All-Star Game, in which he and his African American teammates spearheaded the decision to not play in the All-Star Game and instead return home after they faced racial discrimination in the city of New Orleans. The boycott was also welcomed by many white players who believed a statement needed to be made. Byrd went on to talk about the impact of that day.

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“I was really not aware of the significance of the boycott when it was taking place. I was playing in my first All-Star Game and I was excited about it and wanted to play. I was disappointed that we weren’t going to play. After the Houston game (The game was quickly moved to Houston), when we got back to Buffalo, I ran into Cookie (Gilchrist) and later Ernie (Warlick) and they were talking about the significance of the boycott. I started reading the papers about what we did. I believe it was the first time that any sports organization boycotted an event because of racism. That’s when I decided it was a big deal.”

CFL: SEP 07 Tiger-Cats at Alouettes

Finally, we were joined by Luke Tasker, the son of former Bills special teams ace Steve Tasker. Tasker, an All-Star wide receiver for the CFL’s Hamilton Tiger Cats, talked about the team’s back-to-back Grey Cup appearances and his thoughts on the rule in the CFL to review defensive pass interference calls. He weighed in with his thoughts on if that same rule could apply to the NFL.

 

To hear the complete John Murphy Show from Friday, including a visit from Monday Morning Quarterback Club Vice President Paul Peck, who joined us to talk about Monday’s Football Night in Buffalo, click here.


Posted in Inside the Bills

Replay Challenge on Pass Interference? – JMS 1/7

Posted by johnmurphyshow on January 7, 2015 – 9:24 pm

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We kicked off our guest lineup with Bleacher Report Draft Lead Writer, Matt Miller. Miller discussed his latest mock draft where he had quarterback Marcus Mariota from Oregon being selected first overall. He then talked about where the other top quarterback prospect, Jameis Winston from Florida State might go. When it came to the Bills draft status, Miller discussed the depth of this year’s class.

Auburn Georgia Football

“Compared to last year, this is not a very deep draft. This is a good group and looking at where they’re (Bills) at at number fifty, as long as they don’t trade up this year, you can get a quality player, an impact player, especially at a couple of positions. Running back is very deep this year. Wide receiver is very deep once again. When you look at defense, those guys out on the edge, the defensive ends, the standup pass rushers, those are the really the strong parts of this year’s draft.”

 

Miller went on to talk about the offensive linemen, saying the early round picks might lead you to a tackle that can move inside to the guard position.

Rob Gronkowski

With the Divisional round of the NFL playoffs now just days away, we reached out to Boston Globe NFL reporter Ben Volin who discussed this weekend’s playoff matchups. Volin also went into depth when it came to the Patriots and Ravens this Saturday which will include WNY native and Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski, who looks poised to have another strong playoff performance.

 

“In my opinion, he has to be in the short conversation for MVP. Gronk has been absolutely phenomenal. Having him healthy in the playoffs for the first time since 2011, and we’ll see, that could mean all the difference.”

 

Finally, we were joined by Vice President of Officiating in the CFL, Glen Johnson. Johnson talked specifically on the new rule in the CFL that allows for replay review on pass interference calls. We tapped Johnson to discuss this process and if it could be adopted by the NFL, especially with this week’s discussion regarding the questionable pass interference call or “non-call” during Sunday’s Lions-Cowboys game. He talked about the rule and the process of challenging the call or even a no-call.

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“We had 55 of these challenges and of those of the vast majority were for ones that they thought we missed. There were only six of those that were challenged for ones that were called that they thought we got wrong. By a large, large margin coaches thought we were missing more than we were calling.”

 

Out of those 55 challenges that Johnson mentioned, he stated that they actually overturned 17 of them.

 

To hear more from Johnson and the complete John Murphy Show from Wednesday, click here.


Posted in Inside the Bills

Rapoport: Running Down the Coaching List – JMS

Posted by johnmurphyshow on January 5, 2015 – 9:40 pm

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It’s the return of The John Murphy Show to kick off 2015. Throughout tonight’s show, we discussed the search for a new coach to head up the team. Listener calls chimed in with various opinions on that issue. We heard from running back Fred Jackson on Doug Marrone’s departure and what he hopes for as the team begins to move forward. With the first round of the playoffs getting underway this past weekend, we also heard from head from VP of NFL Officiating Dean Blandino, who broke down and gave his thoughts on the much talked about pass interference no-call during the Lions-Cowboys game on Sunday.

 

Sticking with that topic, we brought in former NFL referee and now CBS officiating consultant, Mike Carey. Carey talked about that very play and whether or not there should have been a called penalty for pass interference on Cowboys linebacker Anthony Hitchens as he was defending Lions tight end Brandon Pettigrew. Carey had his take.

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“I think if he had been facing the same way, nobody would have even said anything about picking that flag up. It just looks odd for a defender not to be playing the ball and have them go down in a heap. Remember, there is no foul for not playing the ball. Just like, you’re not off the hook for turning and looking to the ball. All your actions have to be is to play the ball but the only foul is for restrictive contact against an eligible receiver. There was slight contact but certainly not enough to raise it to the level of defensive or offensive pass interference.”

 

At the top of the first hour, we were joined by Pro Football Focus President and Founder Neil Hornsby who called in to talk about his grades for the 2014 Buffalo Bills. He and his team grade each player at each position for every NFL team. When it came to the Bills, he had high marks for the defense, especially up front of the defensive line. He also had some high praise for cornerback Corey Graham who seemed to have flown under the radar as far as a top defensive back in the league.

Corey Graham

“It felt like it was good for him to be back at home. He wanted to be in Buffalo and that really showed in his play. He started off the year great and he continued that for the rest of the season. We had him graded as the ninth overall cornerback in production terms in coverage, which is a great place to be.”

 

Finally, we circled back around to coaching talk. NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport joined us to talk about the possible candidates, specifically when it comes to the Bills possibilities. He went through the list of names that are being mentioned from around the league and shared his thoughts on what might make a unique or perfect fit.

 

“I don’t care where a guy comes from. People will say there is so much focus on the quarterback that you have to have an offensive guy, you have to have a quarterback guy or you have to have a defensive guy that creates pressure. To me you can easily hire great coordinators. If you hire a great coordinator and let them coach, I think you’re fine. To me a head coach needs to lead and manage his staff and help everyone do their jobs the best that they possibly can and navigate locker room issues. To me, those are the most important issues about being a head coach. If you want a guy who is going to be the best defensive game planner around then you can find that guy but it’s all about leading the team.”

 

To hear the entire Rapoport interview and the rest of Monday’s John Murphy Show, click here.


Posted in Inside the Bills