Inside The Bills

3 Bills ranking high in Pro Bowl fan voting

Posted by Chris Brown on November 12, 2014 – 2:54 pm

Three Bills players rank high at their respective positions in NFL Pro Bowl fan voting right now. Not surprisingly, they’re all on the defensive side of the ball.

Buffalo’s defense has been stout all season long and the players on that unit are getting recognized for it. Leading all defensive tackles in fan votes is Marcell Dareus, thanks in large part to his 10 sacks in the first nine games.

Also in the top five of fan voting at their positions are DE Mario Williams and CB Leodis McKelvin. Go to Buffalobills.com for details.


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NFL moving Pro Bowl to Arizona next year

Posted by Chris Brown on April 9, 2014 – 1:39 pm

It’s not a permanent move, but the NFL is shifting the Pro Bowl to Arizona next February.

That according to CBSSports.com’s Jason LaCanfora, who tweeted as much Wednesday afternoon.

In recent years the Pro Bowl has also been played in South Florida.


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Dareus add gives Bills rare 3 DL in Pro Bowl

Posted by Chris Brown on January 21, 2014 – 11:18 am

With Marcell Dareus added to the Pro Bowl roster Monday it gives Buffalo three defensive linemen in one Pro Bowl for the first time in team history as he joins Kyle Williams and Mario Williams.

It’s also the first time one NFL club has sent three defensive linemen to the Pro Bowl in the same year since 2008 when Minnesota sent Jared Allen, Kevin Williams and Pat Williams to Honolulu.

Dareus also gives Buffalo four players at the Pro Bowl (Byrd, K. Williams, M. Williams). It’s the first time the Bills have had four players at one Pro Bowl since 2004 when they had DT Sam Adams, CB Nate Clements, KR Terrence McGee and LB Takeo Spikes go.

The last time Buffalo came close to having three defensive linemen in the Pro Bowl in the same year was 1997 when Bruce Smith, Ted Washington and Bryce Paup all went, but Paup was a linebacker in Buffalo straight 3-4 system even though he was often at the line in a two-point stance.


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Kyle, Mario got Dareus on right path

Posted by Chris Brown on January 21, 2014 – 10:53 am

When Marcell Dareus came to the Bills as their third overall pick in 2011, he was all of 21-years old. The commitment to being a pro every single day was something the talented defensive tackle had to learn. Fortunately for him he had mentors in Kyle Williams and Mario Williams.

It took until year three of his career for it to kick in, but Dareus prepared like a pro and it made him a more consistent player on the field. In an appearance on the John Murphy Show Monday after he was named as an injury replacement to the Pro Bowl, Dareus tipped his hat to his two veteran teammates and fellow Pro Bowlers.

“To come in the league with Kyle Williams and Mario Williams they showed me so much and they told me just how to stay focused this year and learn the league and watch film and break film down the way it’s supposed to be broken down and stay consistent with your work, being with those guys I just kind of blossomed into the player that I always wanted to be,” he said. “I’ve just got to build on it and stay consistent and remain the guy I always want to be known as and that’s what I did this year.”


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Kyle excited about healthy offseason

Posted by Chris Brown on January 6, 2014 – 2:16 pm

For the first time in three years Bills Pro Bowl DT Kyle Williams will enter the offseason with a clean bill of health. After back-to-back offseasons of Achilles surgery, Williams has no surgical procedures this winter. That has him confident that his ninth NFL season will be one that he’ll enter the healthiest come next spring.

“I feel good,” said Williams. “The thing is I’m going to have a full offseason for the first time in three years, which I’m excited about. Coming into next year is probably going to be the healthiest I’ve ever been.”

Bills head coach Doug Marrone lightened Williams’ practice load during the season with the intent to keep his veteran DT from over working the surgically repaired achilles. According to Williams the timetable for the achilles to be full strength went through to the end of the season.

“I took Wednesdays off this year because the full healing on the surgery I had is nine to 10 months,” he said. “Well I went to training camp at six (months) and I’m at the 10-month point now to where it should be fully healed. I put a season of work on it and get an offseason of training and rehab on it I should be full strength and as healthy as I’ve ever been going into my ninth year, which gets me excited about it.”

Williams is expected to play in the Pro Bowl on Jan. 26th.


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Bills 3 Pro Bowlers all 3-timers

Posted by Chris Brown on December 28, 2013 – 12:35 am

The Bills have three players from their roster who will be headed to Hawaii for the Pro Bowl, and all three are returning players.

Mario Williams, Jairus Byrd and Kyle Williams were all named to their third career Pro Bowls. It’s the first for Mario Williams with the Bills.

This is also the first time three Bills defenders were named to the initial Pro Bowl roster since 1997 when Bryce Paup, Ted Washington and Bruce Smith were named starters.


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Other Bills in Pro Bowl running

Posted by Chris Brown on November 20, 2013 – 4:04 pm

With the news coming down that Mario Williams and Kiko Alonso are the leading vote getters among fans at their respective positions for the 2014 Pro Bowl, here are some of the other Bills who are in the hunt at their positions for fan votes.

DT Marcell Dareus – 3rd
DT Kyle Williams – 5th
SS Aaron Williams – 6th
K Dan Carpenter – 10th
ST Marcus Easley – 10th

Bills head coach Doug Marrone said just last week that if the team had a better won-loss record that Marcus Easley would have an excellent chance of being a Pro Bowl special teams player with the success he’s had in coverage.


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Kyle makes Pro Bowl cheat sheet

Posted by Chris Brown on November 12, 2013 – 3:06 pm

The fellas at ProFootballFocus have put together their Week 10 Pro Bowl cheat sheet, with a list of current players whose performance thus far this season has made them worthy. Buffalo had just one player on the list.

DT Kyle Williams was selected as the team’s sole representative. Here’s what they wrote.

Defensive Tackle
The Starters: Jason Hatcher (DAL), Gerald McCoy (TB), Randy Starks (MIA) and Kyle Williams (BUF)

I feel a little bad that I went for balance here which put the more one-dimensional types like Damon Harrison and Brandon Mebane on the sidelines. They both deserve praise for their play but snap counts could be their enemy by the time we get to the Pro Bowl. Instead we’ve gone for guys more accustomed to an every down role, with perhaps the biggest surprise being the name of Starks. Watch how well he has played this year and then we’ll see if you beg to differ.

The Backups: Jurrell Casey (TEN) and Ndamukong Suh (DET)

You can vote for the Bills players you feel are worthy for the Pro Bowl with voting open right now.


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C.J. took lessons from Pro Bowl week

Posted by Chris Brown on January 27, 2013 – 11:08 pm

Thomas DeCloud, C.J. SpillerBills Pro Bowl RB C.J. Spiller was a newcomer to the AFC-NFC all-star game this past weekend. Two of his Buffalo teammates were with him in Kyle Williams and Jairus Byrd, but Williams and Byrd had been to the Pro Bowl before. Spiller had not. Here’s how he felt about his time around some of the game’s best in Hawaii.

“It was a fun and enjoyable week,” Spiller told Buffalobills.com not long after Sunday’s game ended in Honolulu, 62-35 in favor of the NFC. “It was more laid back than a typical game week in the regular season. So my family and I tried to make sure we made the most of it.”

Spiller had just one carry in the game, but also contributed four catches for 25 yards for the AFC. Kyle Williams had a tackle while Jairus Byrd had three tackles and recovered a fumble for the AFC defense.

Always trying to improve his game, Spiller made sure to be part of the conversations where some NFL wisdom was passed around by veteran players as well.

“I learned some things while I was out here this week as well,” Spiller said. “How to get prepared for the season, prepared for games, different things like that. So it was a help that way too.”

Spiller and his family will be making the long flight home on Monday back to the east coast.


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Wood invited to Pro Bowl by HS teammate

Posted by Chris Brown on January 24, 2013 – 9:48 am

Bills center Eric Wood wasn’t named to the AFC Pro Bowl roster, but was invited by a former high school teammate.

Minnesota TE Kyle Rudolph, who was named to the NFC squad as a replacement for Atlanta’s Tony Gonzalez, invited his former high school teammate to Hawaii. Unfortunately Wood was unable to go.

Wood and Rudolph both attended Elder high school in Cincinnati. Wood was a senior when Rudolph was a freshman.


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Bills Pro Bowl trio first in a while

Posted by Chris Brown on January 22, 2013 – 10:43 am

spiller-byrd-williams-probowl-storyWith Jairus Byrd added to the AFC Pro Bowl roster just hours after C.J. Spiller and Kyle Williams Monday, the Bills have a total of three Pro Bowl players participating in Sunday’s game. It’s been a while since the Bills last had three Pro Bowlers in one NFL all-star game.

The last time Buffalo had three Pro Bowl players or more in the all-star game the same year was nine years ago in 2004. Buffalo’s second-ranked defense that season sent three in Sam Adams, Nate Clements and Takeo Spikes. Terrence McGee also went that year as a kick returner.

The 2000 (Ruben Brown, Sam Cowart, Eric Moulds, Ted Washington) and 2002 (Drew Bledsoe, Ruben Brown, Travis Henry, Eric Moulds) seasons are the only other instances since the turn of the century when the Bills have had three or more Pro Bowl representatives.


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Spiller’s Pro Bowl schedule

Posted by Chris Brown on January 21, 2013 – 1:54 pm

Getting out to Honolulu in time to participate in the full week of practice work for the Pro Bowl has put C.J. Spiller and Kyle Williams on a tight schedule after getting notice they would be representing the Bills and the AFC. Spiller, laid out his upcoming travel plans on a conference call with the media today.

“I looked at the itinerary today and it looks like I’ll be taking off early in the morning (Tuesday),” he said. “We have a team meeting at 7 pm so I have to make sure I’m there. So I’ll be taking off bright and early in the morning. I’m excited about it, it’s going to be a long flight so I’ll be sure that I’m hydrated and ready to go.”

Spiller is also glad he’s got a Bills teammate that’ll be out there with him that has been to the Pro Bowl before in Williams.

“It’s very special,” he said. “Anytime you can get more than one guy from a team to go it speaks to the character of the man and the stuff that we commit to as a team to compete at a high level. Kyle has been there before so for me it’ll be good for me to be out there with a teammate that I know instead of just being alone out there. So I’m definitely glad I’ll be able to share this experience with him. So I’m definitely looking forward to seeing him.”


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C.J. on his Pro Bowl nod

Posted by Chris Brown on January 21, 2013 – 12:23 pm

spiller-dolphins-cp

C.J. Spiller made some time to speak with Buffalo reporters via conference call this afternoon after he was named to the AFC Pro Bowl squad, with Baltimore’s Ray Rice unable to participate knowing his team will be playing in the Super Bowl. Suffice to say Spiller is ecstatic he’s headed to Hawaii.

“Well I’m very excited,” said Spiller. “It’s something that’s well deserved not just by me, but by my teammates. So all the opposing coaches and my peers that voted for me that had this opportunity to go and represent the greatest organization in the NFL, I’m very excited to go over there and kind of have a little mini-vacation for me and my family.”

We’ll have much more on Spiller’s reaction to going to his first Pro Bowl on buffalobills.com this afternoon.


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Fan Friday 1-18

Posted by Chris Brown on January 19, 2013 – 5:11 pm

Hey Bills fans, sorry for the delay. We had a publishing failure for Fan Friday. Here is the latest edition of your questions straight from AskChris@bills.nfl.net and Twitter @ChrisBrownBills. Let’s get to them.

1 - Hi Chris,
Just wondering if you could address the Pro Bowl alternates rules and procedure. I know many players end up “making” the Pro Bowl as injured players bow out, but is there also a roster spot that the head coach gets to fill with whomever he chooses? (If so, wouldn’t you choose Byrd or Spiller with that? I would!)

Thanks,
Go Bills!
Greg Campbell

CB: To my knowledge alternates are selected based on who got the next most votes from players and coaches. So team coaches do not get to choose. For example, Calvin Johnson pulled out of the Pro Bowl and replacing him was 1st alternate Vincent Jackson. Jackson was next up because he got the next most votes.

FYI C.J. Spiller confirmed he’s a 1st alternate for the AFC on the John Murphy Show last week.
2 – Chris,

What are the early scouting reports saying about Tyler Wilson and E.J.Manuel? I think the Bills need an accurate quarterback above all else and these two might fit that mold. They may not have the biggest ceilings, but I like what I saw from them this season. Can they fit in any scheme?

Thanks,
Josh

CB: I think it’s safe to say that Wilson has the arm strength to fit in any scheme, and he has shown the ability to make good decisions on the fly in terms of manipulating the pocket to buy time, throwing a receiver open, etc. But only the guys that scout these QBs for a living know for sure.

With respect to Manuel there is no debating his physical tools, but his decision making is what pops up as a criticism among NFL scouts. Against the better defenses he faced Manuel struggled with his decision making.

Fortunately for Manuel he’ll be able to go against some of the best college competition next week at the Senior Bowl along with Wilson and you can draw your own conclusions.

3 – Chris, 

Thanks for all the latest info, I look forward to fan Friday every week.  My question has to do with our upcoming pick in the NFL draft. 

Have you had any indication that we are seriously considering Mike Glennon with the first round pick?  This guy is the real deal!  I might be jumping the gun a bit, but this guy looks like he has Tom Brady/Aaron Rodgers type potential.  Most draft scouts have him rated as a 2-3 round pick… But I really doubt any die hard bills fan will regret “reaching” and taking a chance on a potential franchise QB.  The time is now!

He doesn’t have Geno Smith type stats; however, he rarely got to experience much time in the pocket and when he did, the receivers would drop a large amount of catchable passes.  Even when they were perfect throws.

I’m hoping the Bills have been scouting this guy since last year and that is one of the reasons buddy was so comfortable taking TJ Graham so high in last year’s draft.

I’ve heard all the buddy nix interviews and he has expressed interest in getting a QB if he is there… I want to know what you think they will do? As you can tell, I’m pumped about this offseason.  Unfortunately, the offseason has been the best part of being a Bills fan for a long time.

Thanks again and keep up the great work.

Bills fan in Dallas TX,
-Bill O

CB: First of all if you think that Buddy Nix or any member of his personnel staff reveals their true leanings with respect to prospects in the draft you’re crazy. It’s full lockdown mode with the personnel department this time of year and you can understand why.

Glennon is highly touted in what is considered a down year for quarterbacks. He’s got a great arm and yes you’re right his offensive line was not great. Mobility is an issue, but he’s got experience in a pro system. Buddy Nix at the end of the season on his radio show didn’t deny he was a guy they’ve looked at.

Truthfully though they’ve looked at all the quarterback prospects that are worth their salt. So read into it what you want. The bottom line is Nix has said they’d like to draft a future franchise QB. The question is will the draft fall or the Bills make a move to ensure that happens?

4 –  Hey Chris,

I know it’s early I’m looking at the top end of the draft I’m not liking the quarterbacks or the idea of drafting another defensive lineman, would they draft another tackle and maybe put Cordy Glenn on the right side or is there a wide receiver worth taking?

I’m assuming Jarvis Jones won’t be around at 8 do you think Manti Te’o would be a good fit with the Bills? I know free agency will influence what direction they go in the draft, Buddy mentioned possibly a quarterback in free agency I looked at the list and unless Mike Vick is added to it I’m not convinced there is anybody available that is any better than Fitzpatrick I’m kind of hoping they either trade for someone or stay the course, what do you think of the quarterback situation and the top of the draft? Thanks for all you do!

Alexander Albanese
Toronto

CB: There have been a couple of wide receivers that are viewed as first round picks, but not true top 10 selections. I don’t see Buddy Nix as the type that would take a receiver that high.

Tennesee’s Cordarelle Patterson is an intriguing physical specimen, but there’s not much of a college track record there with just one year of FBS competition. I’d much prefer a guy with more of a resume of production like Baylor’s Terrance Williams or Cal’s Keenan Allen. All three though should come off the board in round one or early second round.

You’re probably right on Jarvis Jones. Most see him as a top 5, but his spinal stenosis might concern some and he could slip.

Te’o is a LB that has been projected to the Bills in mock drafts (see: Mel Kiper), but I want to see how he tests at the Combine in the drills. The whole Notre Dame defense played poorly in the National Championship game, but I’d imagine that Te’o’s performance might necessitate a good showing at the Combine to re-assure scouts. Still, he’s widely seen as a mid-first rounder at worst.

I think Alex Smith will be there in light of his contract situation, knowing his $7.5M salary is guaranteed if he’s still on the 49ers roster April 1st. I don’t know at this time whether the Bills see him as a viable option, mainly because they can’t comment on players still under contract with other clubs.

Nix has said they would like to draft one and get one in free agency, so there’s a good chance they add more than one.

The draft prospects aren’t top flight, elite talents like the ones that were in the draft pool last season, arguably the best QB draft since 1983. But guys like Geno Smith, Mike Glennon and Ryan Nassib could sneak into the first round knowing the premium placed on the position, provided a team needing a QB (KC, AZ, Buf) decides to make the move back into the first.

5 – Hi Chris, just wondering what you thought of the Buffalo Bills decision to hire Doug Marrone as their new head coach. Based on his record (25-25) at Syracuse, it seems to me that he may not do well in the pros. I saw that he does have some NFL coaching experience, but mainly as an offensive coordinator. What are your thoughts? I’m worried about him bringing his coaching staff from Syracuse as well. Now, if his understudies have little pro coaching experience, this could be a painful rebuilding process, one that may take years. I believe the Buffalo Bills do have talent right now, but will Marrone be able to coax wins out of this squad? Your thoughts,

Tony, Ormond Beach, Fl

CB: I think if you used Marrone’s record at Syracuse as a barometer to measure his future success in the NFL you’re making a big mistake. Syracuse was a wayward program when Marrone took over. They won just 10 games in the previous four years before Marrone took over. He won 12 in his first two seasons including an 8-5 campaign in 2010.

Marrone made very solid choices for his coordinators. Hopefully you saw our story on the website about their expertise. His understudies from Syracuse largely include assistants that have either coached or played in the NFL.

I think Marrone will quickly establish a rapport with the players and get more out of the talent that exists on this roster. There won’t be any rebuilding. This is a regrouping effort, and Marrone I think could prove to be one of the better hires for head coach for this franchise in quite some time.


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I-R won’t keep Leodis out of Pro Bowl

Posted by Chris Brown on December 21, 2012 – 8:08 am

If Leodis McKelvin earns the nod from players and coaches to represent the AFC as their designated returner, his current injured reserve status would not keep him from being named to the team or from participating.

According to the NFL league office, McKelvin being placed on injured reserve does not rule him out for the Pro Bowl. If he is voted in he would have to pass a physical prior to the week of Pro Bowl to participate.

Now with the news that McKelvin is likely to have groin surgery, participating may not happen. McKelvin leads the NFL in punt return average with a mark of 18.7 and has two returns for touchdowns. He’s also among the league leaders in kick return average.

For those wondering why Fred Jackson wasn’t afforded this discretion last year, McKelvin was placed on injured reserve after the player/coach ballots were finalized. Jackson’s moved to injured reserve happened a month before that happened last year.

The Pro Bowl rosters are scheduled to be announced on Dec. 26th on NFL Network at 7 pm.


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Pro Bowl voting update

Posted by Chris Brown on December 12, 2012 – 3:06 pm

A handful of Bills are still among the top five at their respective positions in fan Pro Bowl voting. Here’s where they rank.

Jairus Byrd is 2nd among AFC Free Safeties

Kyle Williams is 3rd among AFC Defensive Tackles

C.J. Spiller is 4th among AFC Running Backs and newewst to crack the top five at his position.

Leodis McKelvin is 4th among AFC Kick Returners     

Voting for the Pro Bowl only goes until Dec. 17th, so cast your ballots now.


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Bills Pro Bowl fan voting update

Posted by Chris Brown on November 28, 2012 – 12:55 pm

There are a few Bills players that are in the top 5 at their respective position in fan voting for the Pro Bowl. Shockingly, C.J. Spiller is not among them. Here’s the latest update.

At kick returner Leodis McKelvin sits third in the voting behind Cleveland’s Josh Cribbs and Baltimore’s Jacoby Jones for the AFC spot.

Position Conference Team Name Number of Votes
Kick Returners AFC Baltimore Ravens Jones, Jacoby 80278
Kick Returners AFC Cleveland Browns Cribbs, Joshua 63567
Kick Returners AFC Buffalo Bills McKelvin, Leodis 43535

Jairus Byrd stands second at free safety behind Baltimore veteran Ed Reed.

Position Conference Team Name Number of Votes
Free Safety AFC Baltimore Ravens Reed, Ed 84017
Free Safety AFC Buffalo Bills Byrd, Jairus 71695

Kyle Williams is still third in the DT voting behind Baltimore’s Haloti Ngata and Cincinnati’s Geno Atkins.

Position Conference Team Name Number of Votes
Defensive Tackles AFC Baltimore Ravens Ngata, Haloti 219581
Defensive Tackles AFC Cincinnati Bengals Atkins, Geno 196813
Defensive Tackles AFC Buffalo Bills Williams, Kyle 132099

2013 Pro Bowl voting will continue online and on web-enabled mobile phones through Dec. 17 by going to Buffalobills.com to fill out a ballot.

The teams will be announced at 7:00 pm (ET) Wednesday, December 26 on NFL Network’s “Total Access”.

The AFC and NFC All-Star squads are based on the consensus votes of fans, players and coaches. Each group’s vote counts one-third toward determining the 43-man rosters that represent the American Football Conference and National Football Conference in the Pro Bowl. NFL players and coaches will cast their votes on December 20-21.


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Byrd, Kyle, Leodis in AFC Pro Bowl hunt

Posted by Chris Brown on November 14, 2012 – 4:58 pm

Three Bills players are in the hunt for an AFC Pro Bowl nod as they’re all among the top three vote getters at their respective positions.

Jairus Byrd is second among free safeties, just 8,000 votes behind Baltimore’s Ed Reed.

Kyle Williams is third among defensive tackles behind Cincinnati’s Geno Atkins and Baltimore’s Haloti Ngata.

Leodis McKelvin is third among kick returners behind Cleveland’s Josh Cribbs and Baltimore’s Jacoby Jones.

Vote for your Bills as much as possible right here to move them into the top two vote getters at their position to help land them in Hawaii this winter.


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Pro Bowl could be scrapped

Posted by Chris Brown on February 5, 2012 – 12:27 pm

It’s not dead yet, but after the half-hearted display in last week’s Pro Bowl, the league’s all-star game could end of being scrapped altogether.

That according to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell himself in an interview with Mike and Mike in the Morning on ESPN Radio. Goodell said he has broached the subject with NFLPA Executive Director DeMaurice Smith.


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Whitner feels George “got robbed”

Posted by Chris Brown on December 28, 2011 – 1:02 pm

Pro Bowl snubs are a popular topic this time of year and there are cases to be made for more than just a handful of players on Buffalo’s roster. But the opinion of an NFL player that plays the same position feeling a Bills player got robbed for Pro Bowl recognition carries a bit more weight.

Former Bills safety Donte Whitner felt that George Wilson was snubbed for AFC Pro Bowl honors at the strong safety position.

DonteWhitner I also wanna say that I feel for my brothers in Buffalo..I kno they have the heart and resolve to have a great season next yr..GW got robbed

 
Whitner, who routinely watches tape from around the league and not just that of his own team has an opinion that is far from unfounded. Leading the team in interceptions (4) and total takeaways (5) while also standing third on the team in tackles (94) Wilson has been a stalwart on the defensive side of the ball for the Bills.

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