Inside The Bills

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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Posted in Inside the Bills

Bills on record-setting sack pace

Posted by Chris Brown on November 9, 2014 – 6:59 pm

The Bills did not get the win on Sunday, but their defense continued its torrid sack pace notching a half dozen more against the Chiefs. It’s given Buffalo it’s highest sack total in their first nine games in team history.

The Bills defense is coming off a franchise-record sack season last year when they set a team record with 57. Their 34 sacks through the first nine games this year however, is the most in club annals. Their old mark of 32 was set in 1997.

In their last 5 games, Buffalo has notched 23 takedowns of opposing QBs, the most in a five-game span since club-record 23 set in games 2-6, 1964 and matched in games 11-15, 2013.

“Yeah I mean, this is a really good group, they’re good up front, here at their own place been playing good all year,” said Chiefs QB Alex Smith. “It was tough,I knew coming in that this was a good group at home and they got the advantage when it’s loud and you can’t use cadence. I thought in order that we put ourselves in some bad 3rd downs, you want to stay out of any situation like this and we did. We had penalties and sacks and negative plays and put ourselves in 3rd and longs, and your kind of falling right in their wheel house.”

Marcell Dareus led the way Sunday with three sacks, Jerry Hughes had a pair and Mario Williams had the other.


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Marrone on how he’d handle Bills’ ‘D’

Posted by Chris Brown on December 5, 2013 – 11:08 am

Bills head coach Doug Marrone has been pretty pleased with the sack production his defense has put up thus far this season. He has said in the past that he values hits on the quarterbacks in total, not just sacks. Being a former offensive coordinator and very well versed in protection schemes, he was asked how he would counter the effectiveness of his defense.

“I think I’d look at the match‑up situation, who I don’t match up with well if I was on the offensive side of it the whole time and I would set the protections that way,” said Marrone. “And I think because people are multiple and we have guys with multiple sacks that can get that done, it’s a little bit more difficult.

“I think you’re always looking to see what sacks are being created from in terms of pressure and how many sacks are being created from the standpoint of four‑man rush. I think at the end of the day you create more of a four‑man rush even though sometimes that’s not the case.  I think that gets evaluated quite a bit.”


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Bills widen sack lead

Posted by Chris Brown on December 2, 2013 – 12:24 pm

The Bills went into this past week’s action with just a one sack lead on their next closest pursuer. After their six sack performance Sunday, Buffalo has widened their lead in that category.

Buffalo now has 43 sacks on the season giving them a four sack cushion (Carolina – 39). Here’s a look at the current sack list standings by team with the top 11 teams listed.

Team

G

Tot

Tack

Asst

Sacks

Yds

Stuff

Yds

FF

PD

1

Buffalo Bills

12

805

531

274

43

291

26

60

7

67

2

Carolina Panthers

12

649

456

193

39

297

32

93

10

50

3

Green Bay Packers

12

729

505

224

38

201

32

88

10

43

4t

Baltimore Ravens

12

717

457

260

37

238

25

65

10

71

4t

Kansas City Chiefs

12

595

514

81

37

259

26

51

9

79

4t

Miami Dolphins

12

687

520

167

37

238

28

62

6

66

4t

New Orleans Saints

11

578

382

196

37

235

26

48

9

52

4t

St. Louis Rams

12

647

536

111

37

236

47

96

14

59

9

Cincinnati Bengals

12

714

477

237

36

235

21

46

12

77

10

New England Patriots

12

760

449

311

35

229

25

48

10

57

11

Arizona Cardinals

12

598

534

64

34

268

40

111

8

81

 


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Big Ben getting dropped

Posted by Chris Brown on November 10, 2013 – 8:05 am

Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger has taken his fair share of sacks over the years. It’s often a byproduct of the veteran signal caller trying to extend plays and buy time. This season however, Roethlisberger is on pace to set a career-high in sacks taken.

Through Pittsburgh’s first eight games, Roethlisberger has been sacked 31 times. That’s the most he’s been taken down in the first eight starts of any season in his career. Part of the problem is a porous offensive line and the fact that there has been little in the way of a consistent rushing attack to effectively balance out their play calling.

If the Steelers hold to form it should present the Bills men up front with more than their share of pass rush opportunities. Here’s a look at Roethlisberger’s sack totals from the first eight starts in each of his 10 NFL seasons.

Year       Sacks taken
2004       11
2005       16
2006       25
2007       19
2008       26
2009       23
2010       22
2011       25
2012       17
2013       31


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Rolling up sacks

Posted by Chris Brown on October 14, 2013 – 8:39 am

Buffalo’s sack total is on a solid run so far this season. The Bills through their first six games now have a total of 21 quarterback takedowns after posting three more sacks Sunday. It’s a pace that has only been matched by a couple of other teams in Bills history.

There have only been two other times that a Bills defense has rolled up 21 sacks or more in their first six games of the a season. Back in 1964 they had 26 sacks in their first six games and in 1995 they had 21.

In 1964 the Bills won the AFL title and in 1995 the Bills won the AFC East title.


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Bills pass pro better of late vs. Jets

Posted by Chris Brown on September 22, 2013 – 1:02 pm

The Jets have been known as a dominant defense under head coach Rex Ryan. Over the last couple of seasons they have not been known as a defense that racks up sacks.

In 2011 New York ranked 17th in sacks with 35 and then last season slipped all the way to 25th managing just 30. More important for today’s matchup is the fact that the Bills did not surrender a single sack to the Jets in both meetings last season.

Part of that was due to Buffalo’s quick release passing game, but the Bills new offensive scheme has been emphasizing getting the ball out quick with EJ Manuel too. He’s been sacked just once in the first two games. Geno Smith meanwhile has been taken down nine times in two games this season.


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Bills sack total a league best

Posted by Chris Brown on October 30, 2011 – 10:46 pm

The Bills nine sack effort against Washington Sunday is the highest single-game total this season.

In fact the last time an NFL club registered nine sacks in a game was over a year ago on Oct. 3rd last season when San Diego had nine against Arizona and the Giants had 10 against Chicago.

The mark is also the second highest single-game sack total in Bills history. Here’s the rundown of highest sack total games in franchise annals with most recent games listed first for ties.

11 sacks – Dec. 13, 1964 @ Denver
9 sacks – Oct. 30, 2011 vs. Washington
8 sacks – Sept. 7, 1997 @ NY Jets
8 sacks – Nov. 17, 1996 vs. Cincinnati
8 sacks – Dec. 14, 1975 @ New England
8 sacks – Dec. 1, 1974 vs. Baltimore
8 sacks – Nov. 16, 1969 vs. Miami

There are 11 other games in team history in which the Bills had seven sacks.


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Posted in Inside the Bills