Inside The Bills

C.J. and Bills setting lofty goals

Posted by Chris Brown on June 29, 2012 – 9:21 am

Bills RB C.J. Spiller provided a look at the collective mindset of the 2012 Buffalo Bills. While a lot of Bills fans will be happy to see an end to the team’s long playoff drought, the players have greater aspirations.

On SiriusXM NFL Radio with Adam Schein and Rich Gannon, Spiller explained why the Bills are setting the bar higher than just the playoffs.

“We split with New England (last year),” said Spiller. “We had the Giants on the ropes. We are close to being a Super Bowl team.”

Spiller made it sound as though the players in Buffalo’s locker room have a very confident mindset.

“Every year we expect to win and make the playoffs and make a run, but we don’t just want to make the playoffs, we’re trying to get to the Super Bowl,” said Spiller. “Why get to the playoffs if you’re not trying to win the Super Bowl? That’s the ultimate and that’s what we talk about is being champions. If you’re not trying to be a champion as we say, ‘You’re in the wrong business.'”

That final comment is a direct influence from head coach Chan Gailey, who has said several times that if you’re not trying to be a champion you shouldn’t be playing or coaching in the NFL.

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Spielman’s choice easier than Mario’s

Posted by Chris Brown on June 29, 2012 – 8:23 am

Chris Spielman, who sees the postseason as a distinct possibility for the 2012 Bills, admitted that his decision to sign with the Bills as a free agent back in 1996 was easy. That’s why he was impressed with Mario Williams decision to do the same despite the fact that the team hasn’t been to the playoffs for quite some time.

“Money obviously was a factor, let’s not kid ourselves,” said Spielman. “But it has to be a fit too or you’ll be miserable. And if you’re miserable then you won’t live up to your commitment to your teammates and the team and the city. But he obviously saw promise and believed in what they’re doing and believed in the coaching staff.

“It was easy for me because I was coming in with a Hall of Fame quarterback in Jim Kelly and Thurman Thomas, who despite being a Hall of Famer I feel was underrated. The late Kent Hull was a great player. And then on my side of the ball I was playing with guys like Bruce Smith, Ted Washington, Bryce Paup, an underrated player in Sam Rogers who was a really good player.

“(Mario) obviously likes the players and the talent and he believes that this is the place for him. Hopefully it works out for them.”

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Bills Week 5 game time change

Posted by Chris Brown on June 28, 2012 – 11:15 am

The NFL has moved all 4:15 pm start times for games this coming season to 4:25 pm. One of Buffalo’s west coast games is affected by this change.

The Bills Week 5 game at San Francisco (Oct. 7th) will have kickoff moved back 10 minutes as part of an initiative to reduce overlap from early games when the networks have doubleheaders.

In researching the overlap issue between early games that ran long and late games on doubleheader Sundays for CBS or FOX the league found between 2009 and 2011 44 games required that the audience to be switched to a mandatory doubleheader game kickoff. The league determined that by pushing back the kickoff of the late game by just 10 minutes that the number of affected games would be reduced to only 15 (a 66% cut).

Fans in Buffalo that week (Week 5) are likely to get the Miami at Cincinnati game for their 1 pm telecast on CBS before the Bills-49ers matchup, now to kick off at 4:25.

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Herm picks Bills as AFC Wild Card

Posted by Chris Brown on June 28, 2012 – 9:13 am

ESPN NFL analyst and former Chiefs and Jets head coach Herm Edwards was asked to pick his AFC Wild Card favorite and for him it came down to two teams, the Jets and the Bills.

Edwards picked the Bills to finish ahead of the Jets in the AFC East.

“This year in the offseason they did a great job of acquiring free agents,” said Edwards of Buffalo. “I’m talking about Mario Williams and Mark Anderson. That will allow them to get to the quarterback. This offense is a very productive offense. Fitzpatrick is more like a point guard in basketball, he distributes the football. They will battle the Jets in my opinion as a Wild Card team in this division. I think New England is still good enough to win the division. I think the Bills have a chance with their schedule to win nine games and maybe get into the playoffs.

“I think the Bills have an edge offensively in this sense, they’ve been together, the Jets have a new coordinator and a new system. They want to ground and pound and that’s fine, but you still have to be able to throw the football. The Bills can throw the ball. They put you in space, they run a lot of shotgun spread offense and have skill players that can catch and run. Their offense is a little ahead of the Jets offense right now.”

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New Era’s sideline gear

Posted by Chris Brown on June 26, 2012 – 1:09 pm

First the New Era draft collection was launched in April. Now with training camp less than a month away, New Era has unveiled their sideline collection. Check out what the players and coaches will be wearing on the Bills sideline this fall.

Set for release on July 12th, Bills sideline caps will be in the Bills store at One Bills Drive and other NFL retailers. Here’s a look.


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Anderson not conceding to Mario

Posted by Chris Brown on June 26, 2012 – 8:00 am

Last week we told you how Mario Williams claimed to lay down the law to his former and once again current teammate Mark Anderson about who would have more sacks come season’s end in 2012. Anderson took the time to respond.

After Williams told the media that he’s already explained to Anderson that he would be the more productive end in terms of quarterback takedowns, Anderson had a response of his own when asked about it by the media, though he was a bit more diplomatic.

“We will see when it is all said and done,” said Anderson. “It is going to be a fun competition and we are both competitive guys. We are just going to feed off of each other and the best man will win.”

Anderson said he knew what he was in for when he signed with the Bills and became Williams teammate a second time.

“I had experience playing with him in Houston,” Anderson said. “I know what type of player he is. I know what type of jokes he has on and off the field. I already knew what I was getting myself into with Mario.”

Personally I think with all the attention that Williams is going to draw from opposing offenses that Anderson could wind up being the pass rusher with more sacks come season’s end because he’ll have more one-on-one opportunities.

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Pass rush adds could be difference

Posted by Chris Brown on June 25, 2012 – 10:31 am

Buffalo’s pass rush additions have garnered the Bills a lot of offseason attention. But by adding Mario Williams and Mark Anderson and the strong likelihood of a back to form Shawne Merriman, they’re also being looked upon as a legitimate playoff contender because of what recent Super Bowl history has said about teams with pass rush talent. analyst Daniel Jeremiah astutely pointed out that four of the last five Super Bowl winners finished in the top 3 in sacks in their championship seasons. He then looks at the bottom 10 NFL clubs in sacks from 2011 and picks out four that he feels best addressed their pass rush shortcomings. Naturally the Bills were on the list. Here was his assessment.

Buffalo Bills (T-27th with 29 sacks): The Bills weren’t bashful in addressing their pass-rushing needs. They brought in the top available pass rusher in free agency (Mario Williams) and robbed a divisional rival of their top pass rusher (Mark Anderson). Those two players should help the Bills drastically improve their anemic sack total of 2011.

Merriman isn’t even mentioned in the assessment, but with the spring he was able to put together the Bills could have a third proven pass rusher added to the fold.

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More positive grades for Bills

Posted by Chris Brown on June 19, 2012 – 2:11 pm

The Bills offseason has been one of the more popular among the national scribes in the media. Here’s yet another positive review of Buffalo’s eye-opening offseason.

The Sporting News’ Vinny Iyer gave the Bills an ‘A’ grade for their offseason moves, one of only three teams to grade that high.

Buffalo Bills
Key additions: DE Mario Williams, DE Mark Anderson, CB Stephon Gilmore, QB Vince Young.

Key losses: OT Demetrius Bell, WR Roscoe Parrish.

Where the Bills fall short on quantity they make up for in quality. With the switching back to a 4-3 defense under Dave Wannstedt, it was imperative for them to add bookend pass rushers. Williams won’t disappoint as the most coveted defensive player on the market, and Anderson brings his fine complementary pass-rush skills from the Patriots. The pressure they’ll provide up front should help rookie Gilmore settle in well at cornerback.

New England and Denver were the only other clubs to earn ‘A’ grades.

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