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Inside The Bills

Fan Friday 1-8

Posted by Chris Brown on January 8, 2010 – 2:30 pm

Fan Friday 1-8
First offseason Fan Friday as the coaching search is in full swing. If you have any questions for me you can email me at AskChris@bills.nfl.net. Here we go.

1. Hey Chris, just a couple Bills-related things on my mind…

First, as you mentioned in your blog post Fitz QB Status, Fitzpatrick is clearly not the starting QB… so has the organization just given up completely on Edwards?  Can (will) we trade him?  Do you know (and can you say) if this is a decision straight from the top? 

I just don’t understand it, really… even though I don’t think Trent will be the long term answer that I hoped he’d be… he seems better than the other options.  (Unless we just admit we’re playing for next year and give Brohm a shot, which you already said they won’t do…)  Craziness!

CB: I think Trent’s fate will be determined by the new head coach. GM Buddy Nix has said he will not make any personnel moves without the new head coach getting an opportunity to evaluate the roster and see who might fit his vision and who does not.

So the possibility exists that he will be back in 2010 and the possibility exists that he will be gone. It rests in the hands of the new head coach.

2. Obviously, the Bills have a lot of holes to fill after the season.  However, the position that seems to be of most importance is the interior of the defensive line.  Marcus Stroud is not anywhere close to the player he use to be.  Kyle Williams and Spencer Johnson make plays but are smaller and are better at penetrating with their quickness, they wont be able to eat up blockers. 

How much of the Bills porous run defense can be attributed to the fact that Stroud is getting pushed around fairly easily every play? 

People are always knocking Posluszny, but when blockers are able to get on him, he isn’t free to roam around and make tackles.  I think the biggest priority in the off-season is to find a clog in the middle of that line. 

I know people say we need a QB, but if you can’t stop the opponents run game your not going to win too many games.  What are your thoughts?
 
Nick in Albany

CB: I’ve always been a big believer in getting your big men first on both sides of the ball. In defense of Marcus Stroud he played most of the season hurt (ankle, knee, neck), so if he didn’t look as explosive as he did last season, there’s your answer. The guy gutted it out in a lost season so I give him a lot of credit for that.

That being said I do believe a DT prospect would be a good add especially this year with such a strong DT class. However, offensive tackle and quarterback are ahead of that on my priority list. The offense is much further behind the defense. It takes priority even though I agree that bolstering the DT position is necessary.

I’m just not convinced the Bills are going to spend big in free agency to land a proven left tackle like a Marcus McNeill, especially in an uncapped year where there could be even more bidding wars between teams.

I think because the DT class is deeper than the OT class that you get your OT first and hope you can get at DT that can play right away in round 2. The DT class just got deeper this week with UCLA’s Brian Price declaring.
 
3. Hey Chris,
I think the bills should really consider going hard after Tarvaris Jackson in the off-season. I really think since coming back from injury late last season that he really has turned a corner. In the last four games of last season he was 3-1 and threw for 8td’s-1int. This year as a backup he’s 10-15, 159yards, 1td as a backup. I think he could be the answer for the bills at quarterback not Micheal Vick like some people are speculating and not Brian Brohm.

I think they should also go really hard after an elite young wide reciever like Brandon Marshall if the broncos don’t franchise him. I think the bills should then draft two big offensive tackles.

Maybe Trade Lee Evans to San Fran to get one of their first rounders so they can draft an OT and a DT in the first round. Since we have James Hardy and Steve Johnson at wide reciever. If we sign Brandon Marshall, we can play Hardy as the number two receiver and Johnson in the slot. What do you think?
Rocky

CB: Well that’s a lot you’ve put on the table there. First, the quarterback situation. To me it’s looking more and more like an answer at quarterback might more likely come via trade, and not the draft. There are some respectable prospects, but I don’t know that there’s one you could put on the field right away and give the keys to the offense. So I think trading for a QB is a realistic possibility.

You’d have to pay a king’s ransom to get Kevin Kolb out of Philly so Tarvaris Jackson would come at a lesser price and if your new staff is installing a West Coast offense then Jackson would be a respectable option. I’m not convinced he’s turned a corner, but a consideration nonetheless.

As for a marquee young receiver, the Bills have that in Lee Evans. No one thinks so because he hasn’t put up monster numbers, but if you pair him with a quarterback that’s just above average the production will be there trust me.

Then as you suggested James Hardy can be the number two with Steve Johnson in the slot. It’s time for the young guys to step up at wideout. But there’s no need to go out and make a splash at receiver when you have a guy waiting to produce Pro Bowl numbers with a better line and better QB.

4. CHRIS:  WOULD YOU RECOMMEND THE BILLS SIGN CHAD PENNINGTON AS A FREE AGENT, DRAFT A DEVELOPMENTAL QB TO LEARN UNDER HIM AND DRAFT THE BEST LINEMAN OR LB AVAILABLE?  CONRAD FROM ELMA

CB: First Chad Pennington has to prove himself healthy and capable of throwing a 12-yard out before he’s even a consideration. I do believe though that the Bills have to strongly consider the possibility of signing a veteran signal caller to serve as a stopgap at QB while a younger QB is groomed for the future, whether it’s Brian Brohm or a draft pick.

I’ve got a lot more draft prep work to do, but I’m not seeing a guy that will be there at 9 that the Bills can put on the field and succeed with right away. And if you draft a QB later, history shows it’s best to let them watch and learn early in their careers.

So I think there’s a lot of merit to the approach you’re suggesting, I just don’t know if Chad Pennington is the mark.
5. Hi Chris!!

My questions are:

1. How is L. McKelvin doing with his injury? I haven’t heard much 
about him during the season.
2. What do see the Bills addressing first during the offseason / draft? QB or OL?
3. Due to our O-line problems. Do you think the Bills should go after M. Vick? He is certainly a good scrambler…

Thanks & take care…

Luis A. Estrada (Puerto Rico)

CB: McKelvin is close to 100 percent. He began running again on the turf field a couple of weeks ago, but told me he’s not 100 percent just yet. We’ll have a story on him this coming week on Buffalobills.com.

I believe the Bills will survey the landscape for a QB they believe can be a stopgap answer for a year or two while they groom a young QB be it Brohm or a draftee, unless Brohm outperforms said veteran.

I don’t see the Bills getting in a bidding war for premium free agents OTs so that might have to be the top priority in the draft.

Finally I understand your reasoning with Michael Vick, but I believe you fix the line and your QB play will improve. Also I think Vick is a running QB in a passing league. So I’m not big on acquiring Vick.


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Owens on Marshall breaking his record

Posted by Chris Brown on December 14, 2009 – 12:33 am

Denver WR Brandon Marshall broke Terrell Owens record of most receptions in a game with 21 in a loss to the Colts Sunday. Owens set the record in 2000 when he had 20 receptions. So what did Owens think of his record being eclipsed.

“No more deserving a guy than he is,” said Owens of Marshall. “They say he’s the ‘Baby T.O.’ All records are made to be broken as some point. He’s going to have a great career. He flirted with it last year too. Great job by him.”

Owens and Marshall know each other well, but T.O. would not say whether or not he would give Marshall a call.


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Jets consider trading for Brandon Marshall

Posted by Chris Brown on September 2, 2009 – 12:32 pm

With Jerricho Cotchery and not much else at receiver for rookie QB Mark Sanchez, reports out of New York are that the Jets are considering making a move to acquire Broncos insubordinate receiver Brandon Marshall.

According to Newsday’s Bob Glauber, the Jets have explored what it would take to land the disgruntled receiver who wants a new deal. He does say however, that the Jets are unlikely to part with a first-round draft pick to make such a deal happen. And it’s a virtual certainty that Denver would expect a first-round pick in return to even consider parting with Marshall despite the antics in practice that got him suspended for the rest of the preseason.

If the Jets had Marshall it would add some serious teeth to New York’s passing game. Teamed with Cotcher and TE Dustin Keller it would be a good threesome for Sanchez to work with.


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Broncos injury report

Posted by Chris Brown on December 17, 2008 – 10:14 pm

Denver OT Ryan Clady (ankle), G Chris Kuper (hand), WR Brandon Stokley (foot) and safety Vernon Fox (concussion) all did not practice Wednesday.

Limited in practice was CB Champ Bailey (groin).

Practicing fully were RB Selvin Young (groin), LB D.J. Williams (knee/shoulder), DT DeWayne Robertson (knee), CB Karl Paymah (groin), S Marlon McCree (knee), WR Brandon Marshall (hip/thigh), LB Mario Haggan (knee), and CB Josh Bell (thigh).


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Posted in Inside the Bills