Inside The Bills

BENRUS Best Dressed Week 15

Posted by buffalobills.com on December 14, 2014 – 11:37 am

bestdressed-winner

As the winner of BEST DRESSED, Robert Woods will receive a BENRUS J1 Messenger Bag, perfect holiday gifts! Follow @benrususa and use the hashtag #HolidayswithBENRUS for a chance to win some of the latest gear. BENRUS watches, sunglasses, duffle bags and backpacks are available for purchase at www.BENRUS.com

BENRUS, LLC was founded as a watch company in 1921. For over four decades, it manufactured legendary timepieces for the U.S. military. Giovanni Feroce, internationally recognized as one of today’s most successful American CEOs, is building BENRUS into a multi-billion dollar, military-inspired lifestyle brand. Mr. Feroce currently serves as CEO and Chairman of BENRUS, LLC.


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Posted in Corporate, Inside the Bills

Aggressive play the aim for offense

Posted by Chris Brown on December 14, 2014 – 9:03 am

Robert Woods talked about it after the loss to Denver last week, more aggressive play right from the jump for Buffalo’s offense. Heading into Sunday’s game with Green Bay, he and his offensive teammates are hoping it happens.

“Attitude and just going after the defense,” said Woods when asked what he means by being more aggressive. “What we see and what they give us and what we feel like we can take in certain routes, certain runs, certain plays and just always attacking and keeping them on their heels. Just keep moving forward.”

Fred Jackson believes there will be opportunities in the air and on the ground against a Packer defense that surrenders points.

“Running the ball we feel like we can run the ball and we have to be able to run the ball and we feel like we can do it against them,” he said. “It’s about being aggressive and going after them. I think that’s what he wants to do. We all want to go after them, get some long scoring plays, get the crowd into the game and being loud for us and if we do that it gives us the best chance to win.”

And winning is a must because a loss essentially ends the Bills attempt to stay in playoff contention.

“It’s do or die,” said Woods. “We have to win so no reason to hold back.”

 


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Bills now have 3 with 50 catches

Posted by Chris Brown on December 8, 2014 – 1:14 pm

With Fred Jackson and Sammy Watkins both busy in yesterday’s loss to the Broncos, the Bills now have three players with at least 50 receptions this season. It’s a feat that hasn’t been accomplished by too many Bills teams.

Jackson (53 rec.) and Watkins (58 rec.) joined Robert Woods (52 rec.) to give Buffalo three players that have not eclipsed the 50-catch mark this season. It is just the seventh time in team history in which at least three players have 50-plus receptions.

Below is the list of previous seasons in which the Bills had three players with at least 50 catches apiece.

Year Players
1987 Andre Reed (57), Chris Burkett (56), Ronnie Harmon (56)
1991 Andre Reed (81), Thurman Thomas (62), James Lofton (57)
1992 Andre Reed (65), Thurman Thomas (58), James Lofton (51)
1993 Pete Metzelaars (68), Bill Brooks (60), Andre Reed (52)
2001 Larry Centers (77), Eric Moulds (61), Peerless Price (52)
2003 Eric Moulds (64), Josh Reed (58), Bobby Shaw (56)
2014 Sammy Watkins (58), Fred Jackson (53), Robert Woods (52)


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Bills top 3 WRs limited

Posted by Chris Brown on December 4, 2014 – 3:32 pm

injury-report-header

 

 

 

 

Bills head coach Doug Marrone isn’t concerned about whether they’ll be available on Sunday, but it’s clear that each of Buffalo’s top three receivers are at less than 100 percent.

Sammy Watkins, Robert Woods and Chris Hogan were all limited in practice Thursday as the team prepares for a big road date at Denver. Fellow WR Mike Williams also sustained a calf injury in practice Thursday and was limited too.

Player Pos Injury Participation Thursday
Jarius Wynn DE Knee DNP
Chris Gragg TE Knee DNP
Dan Carpenter K Right Groin LP
Bacarri Rambo S Hamstring LP
Sammy Watkins WR Hip LP
Marcell Dareus DT Hip LP
Chris Hogan WR Hamstring LP
Robert Woods WR Ankle LP
Mike Williams WR Calf LP

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Posted in Inside the Bills

PFF game review shines on Bradham, DL & Woods

Posted by Chris Brown on December 2, 2014 – 2:32 pm

The Bills win over Cleveland is reviewed play by play by Pro Football Focus along with every other game during the week of action in the NFL. Here was their assessment of last Sunday’s win and who stood out in the victory.

Buffalo Bills – Performances of Note

Nigel Bradham, LB: +6.1
Breakdown: While he’d have been even happier is he had picked that pass off, Bradham had another excellent outing on Sunday. Tremendous against the run and solid in coverage, there was little not to like about his efforts

Signature Play: Q4, 3:26 remaining. Snagging one of the seven defensive stops he had in the game, Bradham stopped running back Terrance West for a 3-yard gain with no yards after the catch here.

Starting Defensive Line: +7.1 combined
Breakdown: Another strong outing saw Mario Williams, Marcell Dareus, Kyle Williams and Jerry Hughes all finish with positive grades up front. They were simply too much for the Browns’ offensive line to handle throughout the game, both against the run and as pass rushers.

Signature Stat: With some tough play up front, they held the Browns to 2.2 yards per carry when you take out the 18-yard run on the game’s final play.

Robert Woods, WR: +0.8
Breakdown: Sammy Watkins gets the headlines for his big plays as a rookie so far, but not enough is often said about second-year receiver Robert Woods. Adding a big play in most games for the Bills this season, he did it again on Sunday.

Signature Play: Q3, 8:36 remaining. Setting the Bills up inside the Cleveland 5-yard line by hauling in the deep pass, he did so despite pass interference from Buster Skrine on the play.

PFF Game Ball
Nigel Bradham was the best player on a defense that made life impossible for the Cleveland offense. He may not have held onto the would-be interception, but the PFF Game Ball stays in his grasp.


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Players know 3rd down needs a jump start

Posted by Chris Brown on December 1, 2014 – 1:44 pm

The Bills offense had a trying time of converting on third down Sunday in their win over the Browns. So although they enjoyed the win, the men on offense realize they’ll need to dramatically improve their third down conversion rate this coming Sunday in Denver.

“We didn’t do well on third downs, I don’t know if we converted one, at all? But we won the game,” said Robert Woods. “That’s something we have to work on. We’ve got to win on third downs and put ourselves in good situations.”

Buffalo was 2-for-15 on third down conversions in the game. The Bills did not convert on their first 11 third down opportunities. Their first conversion came with 7:29 left in the game when Marqueis Gray took a short pass for 41 yards on a crucial 3rd-and-1. The other conversion came three plays later, on another 3rd-and-1, with Fred Jackson getting the necessary yard. Buffalo eventually kicked a field goal.

“We weren’t executing on third downs,” said Eric Wood. “We still didn’t play great. A lot of times, those four yard runs in the first half, those turned into six and seven yard runs in the second half.  And we were saying then, we want to be patient.  But at the same time, it’s frustrating when you’re not scoring.  We gotta do a better job on third down, that’s for sure.”

The Bills rank 26th in the league in third down conversion percentage at 36.3%.


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Woods comes up big on 4th down

Posted by Chris Brown on November 30, 2014 – 6:24 pm

It may not have been the biggest play of the game, but on a day when the offense was struggling to reach scoring territory let alone the end zone, Robert Woods catch on 4th-and-3 was large.

Coming off his nine-catch 118-yard performance Monday night, Woods was playing with confidence, but the offense was struggling, particularly on third down. Come a critical 4th-and-3 at the Cleveland 37, Woods delivered.

“It was just a backside slant, front side I guess (Cleveland) covered pretty well and scramble drill with me and Kyle (Orton), I ran a slant and just tried to find an open spot on the field, went up high and he placed it where only I could catch it,” said Woods.

“Yeah we were trying, fourth-and-three, we were trying to get the first down obviously, and throw a little out route to Hogan and they covered it well,” said Kyle Orton. “The offensive line did a great job and I kind of worked back and I was going to try to run for it and I picked my head up and saw Robert (Woods) working back to the end zone and gave him a chance to make a play and he went up and I thought Robert had another good day.”

Orton hit Hogan for a three-yard touchdown on the next play, Buffalo’s only offensive touchdown of the game, but it was enough to get the victory.

“It feels pretty good, especially winning at home, you can feel the energy on the sideline,” said Woods. “I told Aaron (Williams), winning feels good, we’ve just got to keep winning.”

 


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Woods limited on Bills injury report

Posted by Chris Brown on November 26, 2014 – 2:08 pm

Here’s a look at the Bills injury report following Wednesday’s practice. Robert Woods was listed as limited with ankle injury, but head coach Doug Marrone feels Woods will be ready for Sunday’s game.

“He’ll be fine,” said Marrone.

DID NOT PRACTICE
DE Jarius Wynn – knee
TE Chris Gragg – knee
TE Lee Smith – illness

LIMITED PRACTICE
K Dan Carpenter – groin
WR Robert Woods – ankle
S Baccari Rambo – hamstring


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Ryan: Got to give Woods credit

Posted by Chris Brown on November 26, 2014 – 11:04 am

Jets head coach Rex Ryan admitted that their defensive game plan was to shut down Sammy Watkins after he torched them in the first meeting for 157 yards on three catches and a touchdown. In the aftermath of their 38-3 loss to the Bills in the second meeting Ryan tipped his hat to Robert Woods (9 rec. 118 yds, 1 TD), who made the Jets pay for focusing their pass defense on Watkins.

“We had a plan to take away Sammy Watkins,” Ryan said. “I thought we pretty much did that, but they kind of exposed us on the other side and I probably should’ve been more balanced in my approach, coverage wise.

“They have some talented players on there and they made some plays. Robert Woods had a career day and again like I said, they knew, they’re no dummies. We weren’t going to let the one kid (Watkins) kill us again, so the other guy hurt us. To their credit, Woods made some great catches. I give him credit.”


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Bills tip hat to fans that trekked to Detroit

Posted by Chris Brown on November 25, 2014 – 1:06 am

The players weren’t sure what kind of atmosphere they’d be walking into at Ford Field Monday night with their game against the Jets moved in the wake of the record snowfall back in Buffalo. But as always Bills fans delivered giving the players an added dose of motivation thanks to their unyielding support.

“I wasn’t (surprised),” said Boobie Dixon of the fan support. “They’ve been great all year. People were telling us on Twitter or Instagram or Facebook that they were going to be there and I believed. Everybody was saying the game might be sold out and we were like, ‘Whoa, they really love us so we’ve got to put on for these people.’ We’ve got to represent and that’s what we went out there to do.”

Head coach Doug Marrone was naturally concerned that the team would lose home field advantage with the game moved 500 miles west to Detroit.

“I’ll tell you what our fans were phenomenal,” said Marrone. “When I first came out there I didn’t know what to expect. I know there was a (Detroit) radio station trying to garner up some support for the Jets with a ‘green out’ or something like that. We had heard about that. You get concerned about whether it’ll be home field and whether we need to use a silent count (on offense). As soon as I came out and looked to the right and saw all those blue jerseys I was like, ‘Holy cow, here we go. We’ve got the crowd.’ That was a little bit of a relief at the beginning of the game.”

“That was big. It was definitely something that we weren’t sure about what was going to happen,” said Mario Williams. “I don’t even know how  the weather is there, whether it’s cleared up or what.  For people to come out of their way with everything going on back home, that means a lot to us and we definitely took it to the field.”

“Crowd-wise it seemed like we had the majority of the fans here,” said Robert Woods. “They were pretty loud cheering for us. We were making plays. Really I just think we kept the crowd in it and I think that helped us as well. It felt like a home game for us. We had to play football regardless of whether it was home or away or neutral site we had to play and win this game.”


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Bills look to end red zone slump

Posted by Chris Brown on November 23, 2014 – 1:33 pm

The Bills had a good deal of success in the red zone in their first meeting with the Jets going 4-for-6 in their 20-point win back in Week 8. Since then however, Buffalo’s offense has gone 0-for-8 in the red zone since. Head coach Doug Marrone has been preaching a more aggressive approach inside the opponent’s 20-yard line, and the players are taking that message to heart.

Robert Woods explained what that means for him as a receiver.

“Be physical, run, be an open target at all times. Really just play fast,” said Woods. “When he says play aggressive it just means be ready for everything. Attack them when you come off the ball and make them back up and play everything, play honest.”

“We’re getting down there enough and moving the ball efficiently,” said Kyle Orton. “We had two drives in the first half last game and we had a 16-play drive and a 12-play drive. We had some issues early on on third down and we’ve done a better job with that.

“The red zone seems to be the last thing that comes. Everything is tighter down there. Everything is tougher down there. I think we’ve just got to keep working, keep pushing and when we finally break through we’ll do a good job.”


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Nike uniform of Week 11

Posted by buffalobills.com on November 12, 2014 – 2:08 pm

Each week Nike presents the Uniform of the Week where you’ll see a photo of the combination your Buffalo Bills will be wearing on the field.

The uniform combo for the Week 11 game between the Buffalo Bills and the Miami Dolphins will be the team’s white jerseys on royal blue pants. Shop for your own Nike jersey by clicking here

week5nike-uniform-of-the-week

Here is the Bills uniform combination so far in 2014:

Week 1 at Chicago Bears: White / White

Week 2 vs. Miami Dolphins: Throwback White / White

Week 3 vs. San Diego Chargers: Blue / White

Week 4 at Houston Texans: White / White

Week 5 at Detroit Lions: White / Blue

Week 6 vs. New England Patriots: Blue / White

Week 7 vs. Minnesota Vikings: White / White

Week 8 at New York Jets: White / Blue

Week 9 bye

Week 10 vs. Kansas City Chiefs: Blue / White

Week 11 at Miami Dolphins: White / Blue


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Posted in Corporate, Inside the Bills

Robert Woods’ BOSE playlist

Posted by buffalobills.com on October 18, 2014 – 10:30 am

robertW_bose_1

This year BOSE, the Official Sound of the Bills, is going to bring insider access to fans by showing fans what songs Bills players listen to on game day.  For 12 weeks during the 2014 season, a different Bills player will be featured in the Player Playlist, presented by BOSE.  For week #7, it’s Bills WR Robert Woods.  Check out the songs Robert will be listening to on Sunday to get him pumped up before he takes on Minnesota.


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Posted in Corporate, Inside the Bills, Off the Field

Woods: Penalties cost us big

Posted by Chris Brown on September 21, 2014 – 6:26 pm

There were a number of instances where a positive play by the Bills on offense was wiped out by a penalty. On defense there were situations where a penalty handed the Chargers a fresh set of downs. At day’s end the 11 penalties for 101 yards proved to be a killer when it came to possessing the ball or getting it back.

“It’s a big impact,” said Robert Woods. “It slows us down, it slows down the tempo. It’s energy and then it’s a drop, it’s a downer. We just have to eliminate them and it puts us in a bad situation on third down and it cost us the game.”

Bills DT Kyle Williams felt their miscues only extended the opportunities for the Chargers.

“I think we contributed a good bit,” he said. “From some assignment issues, some different things and then with penalties, we contributed.  I’m not taking anything away from them.  They beat us.  They played better than we did, but we didn’t help ourselves.”

Buffalo’s defense gave the Chargers offense five first downs via penalty.


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Woods participating

Posted by Chris Brown on September 19, 2014 – 11:39 am

Bills WR Robert Woods is participating here at Friday’s practice.

Woods was unable to practice Thursday due to an ankle injury suffered late in Wednesday’s practice.

We’ll know more about his degree of participation as well as his status for Sunday post practice.


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Changes on Bills Thurs. injury report

Posted by Chris Brown on September 18, 2014 – 2:54 pm

injury-report-header

 

 

 

There were a couple of changes on Buffalo’s Thursday injury report concerning a pair of starters on offense.

WR Robert Woods, who was limited Wednesday after sustaining an ankle injury, did not practice at all Thursday.

“Right now he wouldn’t be able to play,” said head coach Doug Marrone.

Meanwhile starting LG Chris Williams was limited in practice with a back ailment listed, but Marrone said it was a proactive precautionary move, not a reactionary move to an injury.

“He went throughout the practice we just watched his reps,” said Marrone.

Player Pos Injury Participation Thursday
Jonathan Meeks S Neck DNP
Randell Johnson LB Knee DNP
Keith Rivers LB Groin LP
Stefan Charles DT Hip LP
Robert Woods WR Ankle DNP
Chris Williams G Back LP
Lee Smith TE Toe FP
Sammy Watkins WR Ribs FP

 


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Fan Friday 9-12

Posted by Chris Brown on September 12, 2014 – 12:29 pm

Perhaps the most anticipated home opener in a long time and it’s Miami on top of it. It’s been a heck of a week for Bills fans with all the positive news. Let’s get to the latest edition of your questions on email at AskChris@bills.nfl.net and on Twitter @ChrisBrownBills.

1 – Chris,

My question to you:

Could you see the Bills putting Cordy Glenn at LG because it seems like they are deeper at tackle than they are at guard? I know they have experimented with him there a few times but it just seems like they don’t have an answer at LG at all even with the Williams signing. I would go from left to right: Henderson, Glenn, Wood, Urbik (or Richardson or Williams) and Pears. With an injury to a T you could then slide Glenn back to LT and put Henderson at RT. I think this gives you the best 5 up front.

Thanks!
Dave
twitter: DTaylor716

CB: I think the way things looked in Week 1 the front five that coach Marrone has put together looks pretty good and should only get more and more comfortable together as the weeks wear on. I think the key thing to remember here is to have your two most athletic linemen on the edges now that most NFL clubs have speed rushers on both sides, which the Bills will see this week with Miami’s Cameron Wake and Olivier Vernon.

I did an in depth piece on this regarding how important the right tackle has become in the league now knowing NFL defenses are putting speed on both sides.

Buffalo’s two most athletic linemen by far are Cordy Glenn and Seantrel Henderson. So putting them at the two tackle positions is the best way to go as I see it.

 

2 – Hi Chris,

My question regards the slot position- both how we plan to defend it and attack other defenses with it.

I’ve read recently about the “big nickel” package- subbing out the nickel corner for a third safety to better match up against the monsters that are being put into the slot now-( see Jimmy Graham, Rob Gronkowski).

Do you see Nickell Robey’s stature as a liability against these bigger slot receivers and is there a plan in place to get a better matchup if we need to? Would this involve Corey Graham coming on potentially or having Searcy Williams and Williams all out as safeties at once? As much as I love Robey- he’s incredible- I just forsee a long day for him trying to cover Gronk in the slot.

Conversely- do you think there is a plan in place to attack smaller nickel corners with our offense? I notice that neither Hogan nor Woods are exactly giants- I wonder if we will see Mike Williams or one of our bigger guys slide inside to slot to take advantage of some potential mismatches.

Thanks for everything you do for the Bills and us fans!

Tim
Ovid, NY

CB: I think what you saw last week was in Buffalo’s nickel at times they’ll make use of Duke Williams as a hybrid linebacker. Similar to the way Bryan Scott and Da’Norris Searcy have been used in years past, Williams has the physical game to help in the run game, if there’s a draw play or something on third down, but also possesses the cover skills and physicality to handle coverage assignments.

Aaron Williams has the size and physical style to match up with a bigger player in the slot too as does Nigel Bradham, who is back this week. So I think Robey can still serve in his role and should a size mismatch present itself Buffalo has enough options to deploy against a larger slot receiver/tight end.

 

3 – Hi Chris!!

First of all, thank you for your great work keeping us Bills fans always well informed. Quick question. Are the Bills planning to wear their white alternate jersey this season? If so, which game?

Thanks Chris & take care!
Luis Estrada
(Puerto Rico)

CB: The only other jersey being worn is the white throwback jersey this Sunday for the home opener along with the standing red Buffalo helmets.

 

4 – Chris,

Love the coverage year round. Helps for a non-local Bills fan. Can you explain the reasoning behind Pears playing RG? He only practiced a few times there and has zero game experience at guard. In the preseason game, he look lost there. Why don’t they keep him at tackle. You had Robert Woods as your camp MVP, so why has he slid down the pecking order at WR? I see him more as outside threat instead of slot. I would like to see him on the field every play.

Thanks
Josh P.
CB: Pears did have some limited experience at guard from his days with the Raiders, though it was only a few games about five years ago. Still I think aside from his first snaps there against Tampa’s Gerald McCoy in the preseason he’s fared well. Pears is also great snap by snap counsel for rookie Seantrel Henderson. Henderson has told me having Pears there is invaluable for him.

Head coach Doug Marrone knows offensive line play, so if he believes this is his best five then I’m willing to give him the benefit of the doubt and see how it plays out.

As for Robert Woods, he was my camp MVP because he brought it every day and outperformed the other receivers on a more consistent basis. Yes, Sammy Watkins turned in the highlight reel plays, but Woods is a guy who is going to get you first downs more consistently. In the NFL it’s about keeping the offense on the field with first downs. That’s where Woods helps you most.

And don’t worry Woods will be moved around a lot this season because he’s the most versatile receiver on the roster in my opinion.

 

5 – @ChrisBrownBills

First day of practice every week is Wednesday. So what does the team/players do Monday Tuesday? Chill or group watch film or ??

RealBryanWatson

CB: Usually on Mondays injured players come in early for treatments. At 9 in the morning there’s a designated weight lifting group. At 10 am there’s a stretch and run conditioning period. Then there’s a second weight lifting group later in the morning. That’s followed by a team meeting at noon. Then they have a special teams meeting followed by offense, defense meetings. That’s where they review game film from Sunday and make corrections.

On Tuesday most players get a jump on the upcoming opponent by studying film while the coaches spend the day putting together the game plan for Sunday. Generally though Tuesday is the players’ day off.  


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Woods: We’ve got to keep foot on the gas

Posted by Chris Brown on September 9, 2014 – 9:25 am

Despite the fact that the Bills offense did enough to win in overtime at Chicago last Sunday, they also experienced a lull in the game over a four possession stretch from the end of the first half to the early stages of the fourth quarter. Buffalo’s players on offense believe their consistency can be improved over the course of a 60-minute game moving forward.

Robert Woods knows that 70 percent of NFL games were within one score in the fourth quarter in 2013, much like their game was on Sunday, but he feels their offense can do a lot better and not have such close games late.

“In a way, I don’t understand that part about the NFL,” Woods said. “I do understand that every NFL team is good and capable of winning. But when we had a lead yesterday 17-7, it didn’t have to be a close game. I feel like we could have kept going and separate.  There are some games where we could play very well on offense and blow teams out with this offense that we have. I think we have to stay on the gas and stay aggressive.”


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Watkins plays a lot despite ribs

Posted by Chris Brown on September 8, 2014 – 1:10 pm

Bills WR Sammy Watkins didn’t have a major impact on the game Sunday, but did play a role with three receptions for 31 yards in the overtime win. The Bills top draft choice admitted he was a bit limited by his sore ribs.

“I felt like I shot off pretty well. Coach called a great game; they managed the game. I was kind of held back from the ribs injury, but still overcame and had two or three big catches that moved the drive and played well.”

Watkins actually played 54 snaps, which was 95 percent of the total on offense (57) in the game. No other receiver, tight end or running back logged more snaps than Watkins. Robert Woods came closest with 52 snaps for 92 percent of the offensive play total.

Play count percentage offense
Cordy Glenn – 57 – 100%
Chris Williams – 57 – 100%
Eric Wood – 57 – 100%
Erik Pears – 57 – 100%
Seantrel Henderson – 57 – 100%
Sammy Watkins – 54 – 95%
Robert Woods – 52 – 91%
Scott Chandler – 37 – 65%
C.J. Spiller – 30 – 53%
Mike Williams – 30 – 53%
Fred Jackson – 26 – 46%
Chris Gragg – 19 – 33%
Frank Summers – 17 – 30%
Marquise Goodwin – 11 – 19%
Boobie Dixon – 6 – 11%
Chris Hairston – 3 – 5%


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Fan Friday 8-15

Posted by Chris Brown on August 15, 2014 – 5:07 pm

Ok fans an important week for the Bills is in the books. The passing game really took a step forward this week in Latrobe. Let’s hope it carries into the game Saturday night against the Steelers. In the meantime let’s get to your latest round of questions from email at AskChris@bills.nfl.net and on Twitter @ChrisBrownBills

1 – Hi Chris,

Long time reader of your articles – including your Fan Friday.

I’ve noticed EJ and Woods are playing with visors in camp. Is this new and can we expect them to wear them in the regular season? To me, it makes a lot of sense for EJ – as it shadows the ability for the defence to see where he’s going to throw too or what he’s looking at. Is that the intention here? What scope do you have on this? Overall, I think they look fierce. But I highly doubt that’s the reasoning behind wearing them…

Thanks,
Mike Barwick

CB: Yes, they and a handful of other players wear visors. Some are shaded and some are clear. The shaded ones are designed to act like sunglasses in most cases. For receivers that’s important when they’re looking up for a ball, not unlike an outfielder in baseball. It helps keep them from losing a ball in the sun. Whether EJ’s primary purpose is the same I don’t know, but I’ll ask him. The other reason for the visors is to keep from getting poked in the eye, which is something that could happen to Manuel if a pass rusher is reaching out to block a pass, misses and connects with the helmet.
2 – Hey Chris,

I am very excited for the 2014 season, looking at the roster it seems a lot of the decisions made on the draft and free agency the last three years we’re really good ones. The depth is so good this year I haven’t heard too much about Ron Brooks.  I really like watching Ron Brooks I know he has had some injuries but where do you think he stands with the team? Do you think we will see him playing corner this season or just as a special teams player? Always appreciate your time.

Alexander Albanese
Toronto

CB: Brooks has had a pretty solid camp. He’s been afforded the opportunity of getting a ton of reps due to the limited participation of starting corners Leodis McKelvin and Stephon Gilmore who are both coming off offseason surgeries. He’s been running opposite Corey Graham in training camp at cornerback with the first team defense.

Brooks has performed well, but at times still has trouble with the bigger wideouts due mainly to his stature. He’s got great catch up speed and is sudden in his breaks on the ball. Defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz likes him so I anticipate him being one of the top five corners on the roster. How many they keep is the bigger question.
3 – Chris,

I couldn’t help notice the pass rush has been extremely productive in the spring and training camp. My question is do you feel that’s due to the talent of the DE’s or is it a product of inconsistency on the offensive line with Glenn being out and other shuffling that’s been going on. Appreciate the training camp coverage and can’t wait for the season. Also one more thing, is there a schedule that lists which practices are full contact?

Dan T.
Western MA

CB: It’s a bit of both. Jerry Hughes might be the most impressive of the front four when it comes to pass rush consistency. Of course that’s been helped by the fact that rookie Seantrel Henderson has been manning the starting left tackle role in Cordy Glenn’s absence. But make no mistake that group is pretty special.

Unfortunately no we don’t have a schedule for the public that lists full pads, shells or shorts and helmets. Typically once the preseason games start however, full pads practices are earlier in the week.

 

4 – Hey Chris,

Jerry Hughes had a tremendous season last year rushing the passer and it’s clear that Doug Whaley pioneered an amazing trade to get him when the Indianapolis Colts were looking to go in a different direction. And if Training Camp is any indication, it sounds like we can expect a similar season this year. Through listening to a lot of people on the radio and around town locally, it seems that Jerry Hughes will not be able to be re-signed if he has another great year– almost as if it’s a foregone conclusion that they cannot keep a stout DE since he’ll be too pricey.

In my opinion, if you run a base 4-3, having a Mario Williams AND Jerry Hughes-caliber player would be extremely important (SEE Freeney and Mathis, Strahan and Umenyiora). I think they should find a way to pay him if he’s anything like last year’s player. An annoying thing of being a Bills fan is seeing the Bills actually draft great talent, develop it, and watch it walk away. And in this case, the Bills didn’t even have to draft him to get it. What are your thoughts?

Also, have you tried a garbage plate since being in Rochester? It probably goes outside the exercise regimen, but you gotta treat yourself to the finer local delicacies.

-Nate in Rochester
PS- Go Bills!
CB: In a perfect world yes they would be able to keep Jerry Hughes long term, but it’s a question of balance. Obviously the Bills would love to keep Hughes, but you have to look at the money invested on the rest of the defensive line.

The three highest cap figures on the entire team are the other three defensive linemen that Hughes lines up with. Mario Williams ($18.8M), Marcell Dareus ($6.49M) and Kyle Williams ($6.25M).

In 2015 those cap numbers go to $19M (Mario), $8.06M (Dareus) and $5.85M (Kyle). That’s a total of $32M for three members of the defensive line. If Hughes has another 10-sack season or more he’s likely to be asking for top 15 perhaps top 10 defensive end money.

Top 15 would put him somewhere between $6.5-$8M per season while top 10 would have him north of $8.5M per season.

I’m not saying the Bills won’t try to do it. It’s not my decision as to how the Bills choose to spend their money. I just know that investing that much of your cap dollars in one facet of your team is not a common practice.

All that being said there have been reports citing sources close to the process of setting the salary cap for the NFL that the cap, which went up a surprising $10M this past year to $133M could move as high as $145M in 2015. Would that extra cap space be enough to make the fourth major investment in the team’s defensive line? I’m not sure it is.

With respect to your garbage plate suggestion, I’m familiar with it having gone to college at SUNY Geneseo. In fact I won a bet by eating two in one sitting. Almost didn’t hold them down, but got through it.
5 – Do you see a scenario where Spiller is traded this year?  I’ve heard rumors, and with the Jackson extension, Brown trade, Dixon signing, and no first round pick it seems like an possible and unfortunate rumor…am I crazy for thinking this or can they keep all four running backs?

Sean from So Cal
P.S. See you in Chicago week 1!

CB: I’m sure you saw GM Doug Whaley dispel those rumors this week. First, Whaley said that he has not been contacted by any team expressing interest in C.J. Spiller. He later followed that up with Channel 7’s Jeff Russo in an interview later in the week where he said he has not reached out to any other team himself about C.J. Spiller.

As Whaley said himself he understands with all the talent in the Bills backfield why people are trying to connect the dots. I just think with the team in ‘win now’ mode it would be highly unlikely that they would trade one of their best playmaking assets on offense in Spiller.


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