Inside The Bills

Eagles sign CB Ron Brooks

Posted by Chris Brown on March 9, 2016 – 9:37 pm

The Philadelphia Eagles have dipped into the Bills free agent secondary once signing Leodis McKelvin, now they’ve added another. 

The Eagles signed free agent CB Ron Brooks to a three-year deal. Brooks served mainly as a special teamed for Buffalo. 

The former fourth-round pick he played his entire career with the Bills until now. 


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McKelvin chose familiarity in Philly

Posted by Chris Brown on March 9, 2016 – 8:16 am

Seeing Leodis McKelvin choose the Philadelphia Eagles for the next chapter in his NFL career was anything but surprising. Knowing that former Bills defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz would be running the defense for the Eagles in 2016 under new head coach Doug Pederson provided McKelvin with a sense of comfort in choosing to sign with Philadelphia.

When asked why he signed with the Eagles his answer was, “Familiarity with the defense.” Smart move.

For a 30-year old cornerback in a new place, knowing the defense only enhances his chances to stick. He has a defensive coordinator in Schwartz who knows what he’s capable of, so having to prove himself in every way, shape and form on the field won’t be as daunting a task had he come in with a coordinator he didn’t know at all.

It’s just a two-year deal for McKelvin, but if he can perform in camp he’s got a good shot at a starting role.


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Report: McKelvin visiting Eagles

Posted by Chris Brown on March 8, 2016 – 1:46 pm

The Bills parted ways with Leodis McKelvin late last week in a cost cutting measure. Now he’s drawing interest from a couple of NFC East teams. 

McKelvin is visiting with the Eagles today per NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport. He indicates a deal there could materialize soon, which wouldn’t be surprising knowing that Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz is familiar with him as a player and vice versa. 

The Cowboys are also reportedly expressing interest. 


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Leodis up for Clutch Performer of the week

Posted by Chris Brown on January 4, 2016 – 3:35 pm

Bills veteran CB Leodis McKelvin made one of the biggest plays of the game in Sunday’s season-ending win over the Jets when he picked off Ryan Fitzpatrick in the end zone to protect a two-point fourth quarter lead for the Bills in what wound up being a five-point win. Now he’s up for the Castrol Edge Clutch Performer of the Week.

For McKelvin it was his second interception this season. He’s up against Peyton Manning’s relief performance in a win over San Diego, Xavier Rhodes INT to preserve Minnesota’s win over Green Bay, Ryan Tannehill’s third down scramble in the win over New England and J.J. Watt’s three sack day.

You can vote for McKelvin until Thursday at 3 pm when the winner is announced on NFL Network.


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Leodis went to school on past mistake

Posted by Chris Brown on January 3, 2016 – 10:45 pm

Two weeks ago Leodis McKelvin got beat for a touchdown when Washington TE Jordan Reed from a slot position worked against him and widened his coverage before cutting inside and underneath him for an easy touchdown in a loss for the Bills. Two weeks later the New York Jets tried the same exact play hoping to be just as fortunate as Washington was. They weren’t.

Down 19-17 with just over 10 minutes to play, Jets QB Ryan Fitzpatrick’s pass intended for Eric Decker on a 2nd-and-10 from the 14-yard line was picked off by McKelvin for a crucial turnover.

“Yeah he made a really good play,” said Decker of McKelvin. “That was something we put in and we saw a previous team run and scored a touchdown and whether he picked it up from formation or just got a good jump. He got inside on a post route and made a big play.”

McKelvin admitted it was the same exact route Jordan Reed ran against him two weeks ago.

“Last time I widened out. This time I stayed straight, seeing it coming and jumped it and got the great reward for it,” said McKelvin. “When Decker tried to widen me out, if I widened out he could’ve gotten back up underneath me. It was pretty much the same thing that we did and noticed two weeks ago and I remembered. So you’ve got to remember what beat you two weeks ago or beat you in any other game and that is what you go with. They did it again and they paid for it.”

“I think Leodis made a nice play,” said Ryan Fitzpatrick. “He sort of read the route a little bit and Leodis did a nice job on that one. Obviously, a huge point of the game and I wish I had that one back.”


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McKelvin: Fitz succeeding with more options

Posted by Chris Brown on December 30, 2015 – 4:25 pm

Leodis McKelvin knows he and his fellow defensive backs have their hands full this week with Brandon Marshall and Eric Decker, who have combined for 24 touchdowns this season and more than 2,300 receiving yards on 176 receptions come Sunday. McKelvin also believes the talents of those two receivers are the main reason why Ryan Fitzpatrick has enjoyed more success with the Jets than he did in his time with the Bills.

“He’s got more options. He’s got more players to throw the ball too instead of (just) Stevie Johnson,” said McKelvin. “When he was here he had Stevie Johnson and Scott Chandler, but other than that besides those two guys who else was he throwing the ball to?

“Now he’s got guys making plays for him. And not only are 87 and 15 making plays, you’ve got the tight end (Cumberland) who wasn’t there the first game making plays and you’ve got (Kenbrell) Thompkins who was with the Patriots making plays for him whenever he throws the ball to him. Fitz is Fitz. He’s getting the ball out of his hand and just throwing it to his receivers and they’re making plays for him.”

Quincy Enunwa has also emerged as more of a threat for the Jets. The former sixth-round pick is another big target at 6-2 and 225 pounds.


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McKelvin ready to hold down the corner

Posted by Chris Brown on December 13, 2015 – 8:58 am

When Stephon Gilmore went down with a shoulder injury against the Texans, Leodis McKelvin was tapped to fill the void on the outside. McKelvin, a cornerback by trade however, had not played outside cornerback in a game in over a year. Was he worried? Not in the least.

“I always had it in the back of my mind that if anything happened to one of those guys that I would pretty much be the next guy up,” said McKelvin of Gilmore and Ronald Darby. “So I had it in my head to be ready at all times and go in there and do my job and not have any drop-off when I’m in there.”

McKelvin admits it was an adjustment moving back outside in the middle of the game last week when all his time on the field this season had been in the slot or on tight ends as a safety. So he welcomed the opportunity to get a full week of practice reps this week with Gilmore out for Sunday’s game against the Eagles.

“It’ll feel a whole lot better to have those practice reps on the outside,” he said. “But you have to roll with the punches and go with it. I’m more mindful of getting more comfortable with my backpedal and just being out on an island. You’ve got to go in there and do your job.”

McKelvin’s last start at outside cornerback was on Nov. 13th, 2014 when he broke his ankle against the Dolphins in a Thursday night game at Miami.

 

 


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McKelvin ready to step in for Gilmore

Posted by Chris Brown on December 9, 2015 – 4:35 pm

Bills veteran CB Leodis McKelvin has spent most of his time in the slot covering receivers or tight ends since his return from ankle surgery in the offseason. McKelvin hadn’t played his old position on the boundary at cornerback since Week 11 last season. But when he went out there last Sunday following Stephon Gilmore’s injury he felt he was ready. He may have to be ready to start on Sunday.

Stephon Gilmore did not participate in practice Wednesday due to a left shoulder injury. Head coach Rex Ryan said it doesn’t look good for Gilmore for Sunday, which would thrust McKelvin into the lineup.

“The likelihood of him playing [on Sunday] is probably not great,” said Ryan of Gilmore. “But we’re fortunate. We have another corner with a great deal of experience in Leodis McKelvin, so that will really help us.”

“I always had it in the back of my mind that if anything happened to one of those guys that I would pretty much be the next guy up,” said McKelvin. “So I had it in my head to be ready at all times and go in there and do my job and not have any drop-off when I’m in there.”


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McKelvin a security blanket at corner

Posted by Chris Brown on December 7, 2015 – 2:56 pm

With Stephon Gilmore’s status up in the air for the game against the Eagles this weekend, Bills head coach Rex Ryan is awfully thankful to have veteran Leodis McKelvin ready to plug in if necessary on Sunday.

Gilmore left Sunday’s game with a shoulder injury and did not return. McKelvin stepped in for him at cornerback, his first action at that position this season and fared well.

“It’s great to have Leodis,” said Ryan. “He’s been a huge contributor for us when he came back. The fact that we have a guy, a starting corner and not just a starting corner, a good starting corner that can go in, that’s absolutely huge for us. Obviously if Steph can’t go Leo will have to step right up in there and we’ll be fine with it.”

As for McKelvin’s play Sunday in relief of Gilmore, Ryan on the whole was pleased with his performance.

“He did a good job,” Ryan said. “He did a really good job.”


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McKelvin faces the music

Posted by Chris Brown on November 24, 2015 – 4:39 am

He obviously felt awful about how his fumble on a punt return led to three valuable points for New England in Buffalo’s 20-13 loss to the Patriots. But Leodis McKelvin addressed the media in Buffalo’s locker room postgame.

“We made mistakes,” said McKelvin. “We have to make sure we stay on top of keys and communication and everything will work out fine. We had mishaps and we had things that go against and they capitalized off of those mistakes.”

McKelvin wasn’t impressed with the team’s defensive effort believing they didn’t come up big in a couple of big spots in the game.

“Four out of 14 on third down (conversions allowed is nice), but we’re talking about crucial situations,” he said. “Talking about getting to third down and then having a holding penalty, or getting to third down and having a communication breakdown. The goal was to have no letdowns on the defensive side. Special teams missed field goal and a fumble. Those things will hurt you.”

When asked specifically about his fumble and how that also happened back in 2009 on a kick return, McKelvin was matter of fact.

“That’s football,” he said. “Things happen and I guess it just happens to me in this place. Luck of the draw, but either or, like I said we’re going to come out here and get ready to play as a team and get this next victory in Kansas City.”


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McKelvin practicing 

Posted by Chris Brown on November 21, 2015 – 11:26 am

The Bills are a pretty healthy bunch heading into their Monday night matchup with New England as one of their veteran DBs returned to practice Saturday. 

Leodis McKelvin, who missed practice on Thursday and Friday due to illness is back practicing today. 

Head coach Rex Ryan said he expected McKelvin to play Monday. 

We’ll have the full injury report later today for Monday’s game. 


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Rex expects McKelvin & Karlos to play Monday

Posted by Chris Brown on November 20, 2015 – 2:58 pm

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Bills DB Leodis McKelvin missed a second straight day of practice due to illness and Karlos Williams also fell victim to illness at practice on Friday and was limited. But head coach Rex Ryan doesn’t see it affecting either players’ chance of playing against New England Monday night in Foxborough.

“I expect him to play,” said Ryan of McKelvin. “Same thing with Karlos.”

With the game on Monday night both McKelvin and Karlos Williams have the benefit of an extra day to prepare for the game. Here’s the updated injury report for Friday. Player status for the game will be posted Saturday with the game being on Monday night.
DID NOT PARTICIPATE
CB Leodis McKelvin – illness
DT Kyle Williams – knee

LIMITED PARTICIPATION
OL Richie Incognito – shoulder
RB Karlos Williams – illness

FULL PARTICIPATION
OT Cyrus Kouandjio – knee


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Illness sidelines McKelvin

Posted by Chris Brown on November 19, 2015 – 2:34 pm

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Bills DB Leodis McKelvin did not practice on Thursday. It was the first practice session he’s missed since coming off the Reserve/Non-Football Injury list.

McKelvin was absent due to illness on Thursday. No word on whether he’ll be back on the practice field Friday. DT Kyle Williams (knee) was the only other non-participant.

OT Cyrus Kouandjio (knee) was a limited participant with a knee injury.


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McKelvin fares well at safety

Posted by Chris Brown on November 10, 2015 – 8:51 am

He hadn’t played in a regular season game in almost a calendar year, then five days before his return to the field he was asked to line up at a different position, Leodis McKelvin took the assignment of playing safety last Sunday and ran with it. He and head coach Rex Ryan both reviewed the game film for a full assessment as to how McKelvin fared in the new role.

“I think first off the Buffalo Bills fans are very familiar with Leodis and the kind of heart and passion he plays with. It was just great to see it first hand,” said Ryan. “He made a phenomenal play on that swing pass. He was thrown in there playing out of position. He had never played safety. I don’t know the last time he had played safety. He just did a great job for us. This dude loves to play as you guys know. It was just a great opportunity to witness it and I thought he played well.”

McKelvin didn’t deny that there are some areas of his execution that could use some improvement, but after not playing for a year he thought things went relatively well.

“I played pretty good,” he said. “There were some things I can get better at as far as putting myself in better position or being in the middle of the field and reading the quarterback. Overall it was a good job and a good showing.”

Ryan is wholly familiar with the challenge of moving from corner to safety having done it with other players in the past, but he obviously felt McKelvin was capable of handling it. Counting McKelvin, Buffalo has three cornerbacks who have transitioned to safety in Aaron Williams and Corey Graham.

“It’s not an easy transition. It really isn’t,” said Ryan. “Number one you’ve got to physical and you’ve got to be tough. It’s different and you’ve got to be smart and all those guys possess those qualities.”


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McKelvin: no substitute for game shape

Posted by Chris Brown on November 3, 2015 – 8:52 am

He’s been rehabbing for the better part of a calendar year from a broken fibula near his ankle suffered in Week 11 last season. Now that he’s ready to return to the active roster this week, Leodis McKelvin figures to see action as a punt returner and possibly in the secondary. As hard as McKelvin has worked with his rehab regimen and in practice the past couple of weeks the veteran defensive back knows there is no substitute for game shape.

“You’ve just got to go out there and just play hard and get yourself ready and run to every ball to get yourself mentally prepared to go,” McKelvin told Buffalobills.com. “When the game gets here you know you’re going to have a lot of adrenaline going on and you have to keep yourself composed and keep yourself ready and it comes from the gut. When you feel tired, tell your mind to tell yourself to keep going and that’s pretty much what you have to do.”

McKelvin admits if he’s active for Sunday’s game he’ll have a little extra incentive to perform, knowing it was against Miami last season when he suffered the injury.

“Things went wrong that game,” he said. “You’ve just got to go out there and be ready. We’ve got them coming into town. We’re coming off our bye after two losses so far. We’ve got to get the ball rolling. It doesn’t matter who is coming in we’ve just got to play ball. We’ve got to get a home win. We’ve got to take care of our home so that’s one main adjustment we’ve got going on.”


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Fan Friday 10-16

Posted by Chris Brown on October 16, 2015 – 10:55 am

A pivotal AFC game Sunday for the Bills. Buffalo will have to be at their best to beat a streaking Bengals club. Fortunately it looks like they’ll have some of their main horses back in the lineup. Here are your latest edition of questions from email at AskChris@bills.nfl.net and on Twitter at @ChrisBrownBills.

1 – @ChrisBrownBills

W/ 23 hurt and Darby playing so well, any chance Leodis moves to Safety when healthy?

SJHNatFan

CB: First, Leodis to me is a cornerback through and through. Yes, he’s very physically gifted, but I’d be surprised if he lines up at safety. McKelvin is the type of player who needs a singular role out on the boundary. And though he is ‘wiry strong’ I don’t believe playing in the middle of the field and dealing with big tight ends is a good fit for him. Whether the coaching staff feels differently is another story.

Since I’ve been getting a lot of questions I’ll take the time here to explain that McKelvin is eligible to begin practicing with the team again on Wednesday in London. He’s looked good doing football-like rehab work on the sideline the last few weeks. Just because he begins practicing next week does not mean he’ll be immediately added to the 53-man roster.

Once he begins practicing the clock starts on a 21-day window in which the Bills can have him practice without counting toward a roster spot. They can activate him to the 53-man roster at any point in that time frame.

In my opinion he will not step into the starting lineup when he returns. Ronald Darby and Stephon Gilmore have been playing lights out football. This is a good thing because it doesn’t rush McKelvin onto the field. With as quick and sudden as things happen at that position there will be an acclimation period for McKelvin who will undoubtedly be a bit rusty.

Where I do see him making an impact is on punt return where the team is in need of field position help. This season the Bills are averaging just 7.3 yards a punt return, which ranks 23rd in the NFL. McKelvin for his career has averaged almost 11 yards a return (10.9). Imagine the value of giving an offense an extra 10 yards of field position every time they step on the field for a possession.

 

2 – @ChrisBrownBills can we call @robertwoods Bobby Lumber?

acurthoys

CB: I’m going to assume you’re referring to the way Robert Woods has been blocking downfield. I know that just about everybody noticed his two-for-one block on Tyrod Taylor’s touchdown run last week when he took out a pair of Titans defenders to let Taylor get the edge on his 22-yard quarterback draw. But Woods has had other strong blocks downfield this season.

I think the most important thing to note about the receiving corps and their blocking downfield is how on a day when there were just 10 completions they were determined to make an impact anyway, and their blocking was the way they accomplished that.

“As a receiver, you never know when your time is going to come, whether it’s a pass or a block,” said Woods. “Like a key block, running downfield, blocking the safety. You never know when your time is going to come. This time it wasn’t a pass play, it was that block for Tyrod.”

Woods also had a tackle on kickoff coverage last Sunday. Hard not to like a receiver that’s willing to do some of the dirty work.

 

3 – @ChrisBrownBills would Bills ever do a multiple QB package once Tyrod is healthy? Our trick plays seem to be getting shut down all the time.
RealBryanWatson

CB: I think anything is possible, especially since in Week 1 against Indianapolis it was Matt Cassel under center with Tyrod Taylor split wide on the first play of the game. I should also note that the man who re-invented the ‘Wildcat’ package at Arkansas, which soon migrated to the NFL a few years ago is Buffalo’s quarterbacks coach, David Lee.

I get the sense that Greg Roman doesn’t try to trick defenses as much as he tries to confuse them, and to me there is a difference. One is rooted in a gadget play, while the other is based on pre-snap shifts, motions and alignment, but I wouldn’t rule your suggestion out at all.

 

4 – Hi Chris,

Loving the new studio set up and all the coverage!
My question is why are we not utilizing Tyrod and his God-given talents??  Where is the read option?  Where are the designed runs and roll outs?  Why don’t we spread teams out with our INSANE talent at WR and then run it down their throats and not let them stack the box….aka what the Pats did.  I’m just a little frustrated – I know we beat the Colts but they don’t look all that great this year so far and we can do better.  Love to hear your thoughts, thanks!

Chris

St. Louis
CB: I understand your frustration. Even when Taylor ran for 76 yards last week only one carry, his touchdown run, was a designed run play. Other than that his other runs were scrambles to elude pressure.

I’m no offensive coordinator and Greg Roman has more football knowledge in his pinkie finger than I’ll ever have. I do think there has been a concerted effort to protect Taylor from injury, which as we saw last week is a very real risk. So the read option and designed runs have been few and far between.

That being said, when your run game and offense in general is struggling there should be a package of plays featuring Tyrod as a run threat that you can turn to just to jumpstart the offense.

Buffalo leads the league in three-and-out percentage at almost 32 percent (31.7%). The league average is 20.6 percent. Granted they haven’t had two of their top rushers in McCoy and Karlos Williams and Sammy Watkins has missed the last two games, but their defense as good as it is won’t be able to hold every opponent down like they did in Week 5.

So when the offense has a couple of consecutive three-and-outs, making use of Taylor’s legs (when healthy) is something I’m not opposed to just to get the offense back on track. Perhaps with all the weapons back in the lineup that won’t be necessary, but I think your point is a valid one.

 

5 – Chris,

Can Colton do kickoffs? He’s got a strong punters leg? Why not try/practice Colton kicking off. Other teams employs their punter to kickoff. Dan had done kickoffs in the league before the rule changed. If Dan could kick how many yards would they truly be losing? 5-10? Doesn’t seem like much instead of having another player active on game day.

CB: Rex Ryan said Colton Schmidt is the backup kickoff man to Dan Carpenter now that Billy Cundiff has been moved off the roster. I want to believe Carpenter can reach the end zone, but returners are more aggressive now than they were the first year the kickoff was moved to the 35-yard line. Unless it’s seven yards deep or more most returners will bring it out.

That at least creates the chance for a long return whereas if it’s kicked more than seven yards deep a return man is taking a knee. To say it’s just a five to 10-yard difference is a bit of a misnomer. A return man in this league just needs one coverage player to fall down or get out of their lane and it’s a big play and either a field position advantage is lost or there are six points on the board for the opposition.

 

London game bonus question
Chris,

Your Blog is my 1st read every morning. Thanks for keeping us transplanted Buffalonians informed on our Bills.

Since I’m not living in Buffalo Area, but PA how do we watch Bills-Jags. Have NFL Ticket but understand will be only Streamed. Any help appreciated.

 

Go Bills from East Berlin PA

Fred

 

CB: You’re right you will be able to watch the game on live stream via Yahoo on your smartphone, computer, game console or smart TV. The game will also be broadcast on television in the Buffalo and Jacksonville, Fla., markets and shown on Sky’s cable network in Britain.


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Fan Friday 10-9

Posted by Chris Brown on October 9, 2015 – 6:45 pm

The Bills have another bounce back game on the road just like two weeks ago in Miami. Here’s hoping it’s a repeat performance. Here’s your latest edition of questions from email at AskChris@bills.nfl.net and on Twitter at @ChrisBrownBills.

 

1 – @ChrisBrownBills Is John Miller practicing, playing?

kirchgraber

CB: Miller practiced all week. He was never full go, but head coach Rex Ryan said on Friday he expects Miller to be back in the starting lineup.

 

2 – @ChrisBrownBills what’s the word on McKelvin?

JamesKnapp21

CB: McKelvin has made some good strides the last couple of weeks. He’s starting to do real football work on the side now with the athletic trainers. He was pulling an athletic trainer while working on his backpedal with straps attached to his body. The athletic trainer was holding the ends of the straps and McKelvin was pulling him down the field.

He’s certainly worked hard to get all the way back and I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s practicing again the first week he’s eligible to do so, which is the week leading up to the London game against Jacksonville. Whether he’s activated off the Reserve/NFI list is another story.

3 – Hey Chris,
My question is on Doug Whaley.  How do contracts work for GMs?  Unless Whaley got fired is it his job forever?

I really loved your article about him recently because it shows that he doesn’t want this franchise to be successful for a couple of years he wants to build it into a  franchise that competes year in and year out.  I’ve been listening to him speak about that in the past and I don’t think most fans really pay attention to what he’s been saying.  I really do believe we have a GM  and a front office that can make this franchise respectable again for a long time. So, do you think Doug Whaley is here to stay for a long time?

Thanks as always, Jillian

CB: I think Doug Whaley is fast proving to be an astute GM who knows how to build a roster for the long haul. General manager contracts work a lot like coaching contracts. They’re just not publicized as much. I think provided the talent that he’s assembled can reach its full potential, Whaley should be building rosters here for a long time.

4 – Chris,

You help keep us fans who live far away up to date, so thank you.  My question is about the defense.  What has happened to them?  Rex said he expects them to be #1 with the roster they have.  They stepped up their run defense, but pass has been terrible.  We call the front four the cold front, but I haven’t seen anything from them that I’ve come to expect over the last few years.  We led the lead in sacks the last 2 years and it seems like a rare occurance if we get one now.  Please help me understand what has become of our best asset.

Thanks,

Loyal and true fan in Virginia

CB: First thing to know is the number of sacks a team has doesn’t always indicate a team has a great defense. Perfect example is the 2000 Ravens. They had just 35 sacks, but allowed just 165 points the whole season. That being said, the Bills pass rush has been effectively countered by a quick strike pass game from opponents. Underneath coverage, particularly in the middle of the field has to be better to help the pass rush up front.

That is the only thing that will make opponents pull out of their quick pass game. That or keeping them out of the end zone and putting them behind on the scoreboard. Then the passing game will have to open up and call for longer pass routes to catch up in the game. That leads to the QB holding the ball longer and then the pass rush can have the impact it’s designed to have in this defense.

5 – Chris,

When is Goodwin due back?

Jim M.

CB: Marquise is listed as probable for Sunday’s game, so I think there’s a good chance he’s dressed for Sunday’s game, especially if Sammy Watkins is down.


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Fan Friday 9-25

Posted by Chris Brown on September 25, 2015 – 11:23 am

The Bills look to bounce back this week and get an important win on the road at Miami Sunday. Here’s your latest rundown of questions from email at AskChris@bills.nfl.net and on Twitter at @ChrisBrownBills.

1 –@ChrisBrownBills

Hey Chris any chance we will see more blitz packages and sack coming from our D-Line this week. Didn’t see much last week:/

IsmarAlvarado2

CB: In the wake of sticking almost exclusively with a pass rush of their front four in the first half last week I would anticipate that Rex Ryan and defensive coordinator Dennis Thurman will mix it up a bit more. So while there will be instances where they do just rush four, I believe they will weave in some blitz packages in certain down and distance situations. As for sack totals, the Bills have averaged 4.5 sacks per game in the last four meetings, so you’re likely to see more of them Sunday.

 

2 – @ChrisBrownBills

How is the team morale going into week 3 after a tough loss last Sunday? #Bills

Bvogs15

CB: Team morale is just fine heading into Sunday. One loss can’t be a soul crusher for any team and that’s certainly not the case at One Bills Drive. The offense is encouraged by the rhythm they found late in last week’s game with three straight touchdown drives in the fourth quarter to make it a game. And for the record Tyrod Taylor confirmed for me that New England was not sitting back. They were playing the same defensive looks that were working earlier in the game. And the defense is motivated to redeem themselves last week as is special teams. So I’m expecting a strong performance.

 

3 – @ChrisBrownBills

I know the Bills haven’t said too much about Aaron Williams but is it possible he’s back for the Giants game?

JohnFalardeau

CB: Bills head coach Rex Ryan said the following about Aaron Williams’ status beyond this week.

“Our trainers seem to be very optimistic about him being up for next week, but we’ll see,” said Ryan.

 

4 – @ChrisBrownBills

Any chance we see mckelvin by the bye week?

daulbucks

CB: Leodis McKelvin is doing more and more on the side with athletic trainers during practice. There are still some hurdles for him to clear. I think a safe guess-timate, and it is a guess on my part, that by the week following the bye (Week 9) he stands a good chance of being ready to go in the home game against the Dolphins.

 

5 – @ChrisBrownBills

Why wasn’t that Steelers player fined for the hit on Goodwin???

dmpynn

CB: I think it’s a valid question. The hit on Goodwin was borderline late number one and second the Steelers player buried the crown of his helmet into Goodwin’s rib cage when he had already gone to the ground. The Pittsburgh player could’ve been flagged for spearing. Had he been then I think a fine could’ve been a possibility, but to my knowledge there was no fine.


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Fan Friday 9-18

Posted by Chris Brown on September 18, 2015 – 11:26 am

The Bills are 1-0 with a pretty important early season matchup with the Patriots up next. Be loud Bills fans! Here is this week’s edition of your questions from email at AskChris@bills.nfl.net and on Twitter at @ChrisBrownBills.

1 – Hey Chris thanks for all the hard work you put in!

Are the Bills keeping three QB’s because of the chance a running QB (Taylor) is likely to be injured?

Danny in Scottsdale, AZ

CB: I think the Bills intended to keep three quarterbacks from the very beginning. The performance of all three in the preseason I believe cemented their spots on the 53-man squad. Cassel’s value is in his experience and Manuel’s play in the preseason convinced the offensive staff that he’s on the right track with his progress as a young signal caller. Taylor obviously won the job.

 

2 – How will the contract extension for Marcell play into our ability to re-sign some of the other Bills on contract years? Including the usage of a franchise tag do you see the Bills being able to retain Glenn, Bradham, and Gilmore as a big three? Do you think that leaves enough for McKelvin( is he on a final year?) and Harvin?

Thanks!

-Michael

CB: The Bills bought themselves some time with Stephon Gilmore by picking up his fifth-year option, so he’s not up until after the 2016 season. Nigel Bradham and Cordy Glenn are the other big names that are coming due after the 2015 campaign.

The good thing that the Bills did was spread out Dareus’ guaranteed money over the first two years with singing and option bonuses in addition to his guaranteed base salary. The deal is relatively cap friendly until the last two years when his base salary balloons to more than $12M.

Bradham and Glenn are the two that figure to be addressed. The linebacker would be much easier to sign than the left tackle, knowing the market rate for left tackles is far higher than at LB. Knowing how thin the Bills are depth-wise at both positions it’s going to be interesting to see how the decision making plays out with those two players.

The good news is the salary cap continues to go up and up and up, and with the revenues projected where they are for NFL clubs this year the cap is expected to take another sizable jump this offseason. That makes re-signing players like Bradham, Gilmore and Glenn more realistic.

Leodis McKelvin signed a four-year extension that runs through 2016.

3 – Hey Chris,
With the extension of Dareus, Could you give bills fans an update on how long we will have our d line for?
Thanks!!!

Danny in Scottsdale

CB: The contracts of Kyle and Mario Williams are the ones set to expire first following the 2017 season. Jerry Hughes’ deal runs out in 2020 and Dareus is after the 2021 season. Now we all know circumstances crop up at other positions that can necessitate some difficult decisions at defensive line, so to assume that the line will be together for another four seasons might be foolhardy. I do think it’s safe to say we’ll see the group together through at least 2016.

 

4 – Hello Chris,

As always, thank you for providing the fans this opportunity. With our limited exposure to Ronald Darby, we don’t really get to see his progression. I understand the need for him to struggle and that the preseason is a good place to throw him to the wolves. I am curious how much he has progressed since he came in? Does he learn quickly from his mistakes? Any information would be helpful.

Thank you!

Cory

CB: I will let defensive coordinator Dennis Thurman, a former NFL cornerback himself, handle this one. Here’s what he said this week about Darby’s progress.

“He continues to work on his craft, he’s a very talented young man. We believe the sky is the limit for him, we expect him to play well,” said Thurman. “If he’s out there we’re expecting him to play well. We don’t look for him to play like a rookie. We know at times that he may get himself in trouble but if he’s focused on what his assignments are we feel like he’s talented enough to get the job done.”
5 – Chris,

Why do the Bills make comments about the Pats? All that does is fuel the fire. Every time they talk smack they get beat down.

Sam

CB: I think we all know that Rex Ryan has a track record of not being afraid to say what he believes. Coach-speak doesn’t really exist for Ryan and that filters down to his players, who he encourages to speak their mind and say what they believe. I don’t think there has been anything this week other than players speaking confidently and believing that they can beat New England. That’s a healthy and necessary mindset to have going into a game against an opponent of this caliber.


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Where roster sits after Friday cuts

Posted by Chris Brown on September 4, 2015 – 2:04 pm

Here’s a look at a position by position breakdown of Buffalo’s roster, which sits at 57 players after the latest round of player cuts.

Leodis McKelvin was put on Reserve/NFI and Deonte Thompson was waived injured so they no longer count toward the roster total.

Our position by position listing shows right now the Bills are a bit heavy at wide receiver and tight end and a bit light at cornerback, but with Corey Graham on the roster he could play corner if needed.

QB (3) – Matt Cassel, EJ Manuel, Tyrod Taylor
RB (5) – Bryce Brown, Boobie Dixon, Jerome Felton, LeSean McCoy, Karlos Williams
WR (7) – Marcus Easley, Marquise Goodwin, Percy Harvin, Chris Hogan, Marcus Thigpen, Sammy Watkins, Robert Woods
TE (5) – Charles Clay, Chris Gragg, MarQueis Gray, Matthew Mulligan, Nick O’Leary
OL (8) – Dalton Freeman, Cordy Glenn, Seantrel Henderson, Richie Incognito, Cyrus Kouandjio, John Miller, Kraig Urbik, Eric Wood
DL (8) – Corbin Bryant, Red Bryant, Alex Carrington, Stefan Charles, Marcell Dareus, Jerry Hughes, Kyle Williams, Mario Williams
LB (7) – Nigel Bradham, Preston Brown, Randell Johnson, Manny Lawson, Kevin Reddick, Tony Steward, A.J. Tarpley
CB (5) – Ron Brooks, Mario Butler, Ronald Darby, Stephon Gilmore, Nickell Robey
S (5) – Corey Graham, Jonathan Meeks, Bacarri Rambo, Aaron Williams, Duke Williams
Spec. Teams (4) – Dan Carpenter, Jordan Gay, Colton Schmidt, Garrison Sanborn


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Posted in Inside the Bills