Inside The Bills

Brady denied appeal, Deflategate suspension upheld

Posted by Chris Brown on July 13, 2016 – 11:14 am

Tom Brady’s appeal for an en banc hearing by the Second Circuit of the US Court of Appeals has been denied. The ruling by the Second Circuit’s 13 judges came down this morning. It all but ensures that Brady will miss the first four games of the 2016 season.

That includes New England’s Week 4 home game against the Bills, meaning that backup QB Jimmy Garappolo will be the anticipated starter against Buffalo, one of two division games during the course of Brady’s league imposed four-game Deflategate suspension (Miami is the other in Week 2).

His appeal to the Second Circuit was a long shot at best. According to the Boston Globe between 2000-2010 the Second Circuit has granted an en banc appeal to just eight of more than 27,000 cases over that 10-year span.

Brady can still petition the Supreme Court to hear his case and potentially overturn the Second Circuit panel’s 2-1 decision against him, but it’s considered ill advised by legal experts in light of the Second Circuit’s denial.

The NFL Players Association released a statement shortly after the 2nd Circuit denial and stated that they will review all of their options carefully on behalf of Tom Brady.

If the Supreme Court agrees to hear the case (considered highly unlikely), according to the USA Today, Brady and the union could seek a stay that would allow him to play while the proceedings play out in court — a process that could take up to a couple of years.

Bills Hall of Fame QB Jim Kelly, in an appearance on the Rich Eisen show, was hopeful that Buffalo could dethrone New England at the top of the AFC East this season.

“I hope we unseat that guy named Tom Brady sooner than later because I’ll tell you what, enough’s enough,” he said with a laugh. “You’ve already broken the records. You’re already the greatest quarterback ever to play the game. But I respect him. I like Tom, he’s a good friend of mine, but it’s time to change.”

Right now it appears that the Deflategate suspension will help in that regard.




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Which is Bills’ game to circle in 2016?

Posted by Chris Brown on May 10, 2016 – 8:32 am took a look at the regular season schedule for each of the NFL’s 32 clubs to see which was that team’s game to circle. Essentially SI’s Don Banks looks at the toughest game on each team’s schedule that could potentially alter the course of that club’s season. The one game he picked for the Bills should come as little surprise.

He hedged a bit as he picked either of Buffalo’s two games against division nemesis New England, partly because it’s up in the air as to whether Tom Brady will be available for the Week 4 matchup, since that would be the last week of his upheld suspension for Deflategate. Here was his assessment.

Buffalo (Week 4 or 8 vs. New England): It almost goes without saying that for Rex Ryan and his long-suffering Bills, the white whale they both have long pursued hails from Foxborough, Mass. Beating the Patriots is where the story starts and ends for Buffalo, which is still working on that mind-boggling 16-year playoff drought. The Bills were 0–2 against Belichick and Brady last season, finishing 8–8 and in third place in the AFC East. This year, Week 4 brings the first test, with the Bills trying to win for the only second time ever at Gillette Stadium (and that 2014 Week 17 upset came when Brady was yanked early with the playoffs looming). If Brady’s suspension is in effect on Oct. 2, the focus will shift to the Week 8 rematch in Buffalo, with even more on the line in terms of the Bills’ quest to return to division relevancy.

Do you agree? I admit it’s hard to argue. If the Bills want to contend for the division title to ensure an end to the playoff drought they have to at least split with the Patriots this season.

For what it’s worth Banks had the Jets toughest game being their Week 2 matchup in Buffalo with the Bills. He even called it the Rex hex for the Jets after the Bills swept New York last season.

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Posted in Inside the Bills

Bills in top 10 in new metric strength of schedule

Posted by Chris Brown on April 18, 2016 – 9:38 am

For years strength of schedule has been calculated based on an opponent’s record the season prior. As we all know with NFL roster turnover averaging anywhere from 25-30 percent from one year to the next, it’s a foolhardy method. The number crunchers at Sharp Football Analysis have put together a more comprehensive formula. They’ve found that the Bills rank in the top 10 in strength of schedule for 2016.

Buffalo has the ninth-toughest schedule according to their calculations, which is rooted in forecasted records for a team’s opponents rather than prior-year records. Their analysis uses the betting market to help predict Strength of Schedule. Here’s a full list of their findings.

1. San Francisco 49ers
2. New York Jets
3. Atlanta Falcons
4. Washington Redskins
5. Los Angeles Rams
6. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
7. New Orleans Saints
8. Minnesota Vikings
9. Buffalo Bills
10. Houston Texans
11. Denver Broncos
12. Philadelphia Eagles
13. Cleveland Browns
14. Jacksonville Jaguars
15. Detroit Lions
16. Miami Dolphins
17. Tennessee Titans
18. Oakland Raiders
18. San Diego Chargers
20. Indianapolis Colts
21. Seattle Seahawks
22. Arizona Cardinals
23. New England Patriots
24. Chicago Bears
25. Kansas City Chiefs
26. Baltimore Ravens
27. Cincinnati Bengals
28. Green Bay Packers
29. Carolina Panthers
30. Pittsburgh Steelers
31. New York Giants
32. Dallas Cowboys

The Bills were also calculated to have one of the worst four week stretches of games in the league this season, with their first four games being the quarter of the season referenced.

Worst First Month:

1. Jets: vs CIN, @ BUF, @ KC, vs SEA
2. 49ers: vs LA, @ CAR, @ SEA, vs DAL
3. Bills: @ BAL, vs NYJ, vs ARI, @ NE
4. Broncos: vs CAR, vs IND, @ CIN, @ TB
5. Dolphins: @ SEA, @ NE, vs CLE, @ CIN

Fortunately the Bills were also determined to have one of the easiest final months of the season.

Easiest Last Month:

32. Panthers: vs SD, @ WAS, vs ATL, @ TB
31. Steelers: @ BUF, @ CIN, vs BAL, vs CLE
30. Bills: vs PIT, vs CLE, vs MIA, @ NYJ
29. Chiefs: vs OAK, vs TEN, vs DEN, @ SD
28. Cowboys: @ NYG, vs TB, vs DET, @ PHI

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Posted in Inside the Bills

What’s the best part of the schedule for Rex?

Posted by Chris Brown on April 15, 2016 – 10:20 am

By Rex Ryan’s own description the first four weeks of the season at Baltimore, home vs. Jets, home vs. Arizona and at New England is “pretty salty.” But there is a key part of the schedule that Buffalo’s head coach loves.

Ryan, who reflected on the Bills 2016 schedule on the John Murphy Show, is especially pleased with how the last quarter of the season lays out.

“The thing I like most about our schedule is we close with three of four at home,” said Ryan. “We get Miami on a cold, wintry December 24th Christmas Eve. Bring it on. So I like that with Pittsburgh, Cleveland and Miami. We’ll see it’ll be a challenging schedule, but I love closing at home. We proved last year closing with four wins at home so that’s a good thing. So I’m excited about having those late games at home.”

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Posted in Inside the Bills
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