Inside The Bills

Rex and players boosted by road fans

Posted by Chris Brown on October 11, 2015 – 8:33 pm

After the Bills took a one-point lead late in Sunday’s game Bills fans in attendance at Nissan Stadium, of which there was significantly more than a smattering, began the ‘Let’s go Buffalo!’ chant. And though the win was in every way a squeaker, Rex Ryan and his players were aware of their fans presence.

“We noticed them. You couldn’t get into a restaurant yesterday with all those Bills fans,” said Ryan. “It was awesome. I guess something I’m learning is I had no idea that the Bills fans traveled the way they do. (The) Miami (game) was packed. We’ve got them here. It was unbelievable. It’s such a great feeling to know your guys are with you. Your fans who travel so well. That was great. I also love the fact that they ain’t off this boat. They never looked to jump and we gave them reason to and they’re sitting right there and that’s a great feeling.”

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Posted in Inside the Bills

Rex breaks down Titans red zone success

Posted by Chris Brown on October 11, 2015 – 9:58 am

Bills head coach Rex Ryan, in his weekly appearance on Coffee with the Coach presented by Tim Hortons, is fully aware of how successful the Titans have been in the red zone early this season. They’re tied with Pittsburgh for the best red zone touchdown efficiency in the AFC as they’re scoring touchdowns better than three quarters of the time. As Ryan sees it the problem for defenses is there isn’t one thing they can key on with all that Tennessee’s offense has in their arsenal.

“There are a few things. It starts with their quarterback. A quarterback who can run maybe won’t see the same coverages that he might see in the red zone,” Ryan said. “The other thing is they have a couple of huge guys. They’ve got (WR Dorial) Green-Beckham at 6-6 or whatever he is, so that presents a huge problem a size mismatch like Gronkowski, a mismatch size-wise. They have speed with some other guys and they go three tight ends a lot down there a bunch. So they have size, an accurate quarterback who can also run. That’s what makes them extremely tough down there.”

Buffalo’s red zone defense is ranked 16th in the NFL.

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Posted in Inside the Bills

Formula for Bills ‘D’ may be to simplify

Posted by Chris Brown on October 10, 2015 – 2:37 pm

The Bills defense is more talented than most in the NFL, but that hasn’t always shown itself through the first month of the season. Part of the reason why is defensive communication. Too often the defense is still moving players around to get into the best possible play call for what they anticipate is coming from the opposing offense. The problem is the defensive alignment isn’t always set and ready, especially when opponents got to the no huddle, up tempo approach. It’s something each of Buffalo’s first four opponents have turned to at times. So what’s the solution?

In a word, simplify. Buffalo’s defense is so talented that even if they’re not in the best possible play call their players are good enough to still make a play. DT Kyle Williams believes there could be times where reducing their many options in their defensive system might be better so their talent can take over.

“We’ve had some guys coming in and out. We’ve been going up against a team that’s going hurry-up, no huddle, throwing different formations at you and going at a quick clip. They’re getting the ball in and out of the quarterback’s hands—that’s a challenge on its own,” Williams said. “When we’re getting stuff like that, we might bring it back down a little bit so we can line up and play fast. But we have to know when we have to do that, and when we don’t have to.”

Williams is expecting more quick pass game from the Titans Sunday, just like their previous opponents.

“It’s like everything else, if you’re having trouble stopping the run or whatever it may be, you’re going to see as much of that as they feel like they can handle, until you get it stopped,” he said. “We have to be prepared for it.”

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Posted in Inside the Bills

Herron blending in quickly

Posted by Chris Brown on October 10, 2015 – 9:22 am

The Bills picked up free agent RB Boom Herron on Tuesday and he’s quickly acclimated himself to Buffalo’s rushing attack. It’s all translated into what will likely be a noticeable role in Sunday’s game against Tennessee.

Herron, who came in the door armed with a measure of familiarity with the offensive system, blended in well on offense this week. His fresh legs were also evident as his burst through the hole in team practice was probably the best of the group that’s currently healthy (Boobie Dixon, Cierre Wood).

That’s why offensive coordinator Greg Roman believes he’ll be making use of Herron against Tennessee.

“I think Boom is going to…you know there’s a good chance that he’s going to be a part of the game plan,” said Roman. “I really like what I see out of him, like what I hear out of him and he’s picking things up pretty quickly.”

Herron’s familiarity with the system is due to the similarities between Colts OC Pep Hamilton’s offense and Roman’s. The two coached together at Stanford under Jim Harbaugh.

“I definitely feel like I’m a hard-nosed, downhill runner,” Herron said. “I like to get the tough yards. I feel like I can also break a long one as well. I’m just an all-around back.”

Herron also has familiarity with the Titans having played them twice last season. In those two games he had 17 carries for 59 yards.

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Posted in Inside the Bills

Underneath coverage key to pass rush

Posted by Chris Brown on October 9, 2015 – 10:05 am

Through the first four games of the season the Bills vaunted pass rush has been rendered ineffective due mainly to opposing quarterback getting the ball out in less than 2.5 seconds on average. Andrew Luck, Tom Brady, Ryan Tannehill and Eli Manning have all succeeded with a quick pass game to negate any pass pressure generated by Buffalo’s men up front. Defensive coordinator Dennis Thurman has a solution to reverse that trend.

“It’s one of those situations where if the ball is coming out in under two seconds it’s a little hard to get the type of pass rush that you want to generate,” said Thurman. “At the same time everybody has a job to do and quarterbacks have been throwing the ball fairly quickly against us and we know it. So we gotta do a better job of our underneath coverage.”

Coverage on the boundary was very good against the quick game last week. Evidence of that could be seen in the receiving statistics of Odell Beckham Jr. and Rueben Randle. The pair was targeted 18 times in the game and had just six receptions. The middle of the field is what has to be guarded more effectively, especially knowing that Titans TE Delanie Walker is one of Marcus Mariota’s favorite targets.

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Posted in Inside the Bills

Fan Friday 11-2

Posted by Chris Brown on November 2, 2012 – 2:50 pm

Alright Bills fans, second half of the schedule is up and there are two difficult road games on tap. Let’s hope for the best and get to your latest round of questions from and @ChrisBrownBills on Twitter.

1 – Dear Chris: 

Do you think Chan will ever not only start CJ, but give him the majority of the carries? I love Fred but he is not the game breaker CJ is and I think if he was on a lot of other teams CJ is a 1800 to 2000 yard man an 12-15 touchdowns. I admire Chan’s loyalty but question its productivity? CJ is a game changing threat every time he touches the ball and keeping him on the bench half the time no longer makes a lot of sense. What do you think? Please let me know what you think, and what Chan might be thinking, if he is at all? Thanks!


CB: While I certainly believe C.J. is a game-changing back I think we all need to be fair to Fred Jackson and respect the fact that his knee was not right or close to 100 percent until Week 7 against Tennessee. We all saw the old Fred Jackson in that game, which was in stark contrast to what we saw the previous three games in his return from the LCL knee injury.

If anyone deserves the benefit of the doubt it’s Jackson. In case you forgot he was lighting the league on fire with numbers similar to what C.J. is doing thus far this season. Right now they’ve got a good balance developed between them. Fred averages 14 touches a game to Spiller’s 13. They combined for over 220 yards of offense against Tennessee, which was the first time that both of them were truly healthy.

I think Spiller can take it the distance on any play and I don’t mind seeing him get more of the work, but Fred’s talents cannot be ignored. Not to mention the fact that in this day in age in the league you do need two backs to get through a season. Week 1 when Fred went down in the first half and Week 3 when Spiller went down in the first half were reminders of that.


2 – Hey Chris,
Any chance that Matt Flynn will be available this season or next? And if he is would the Bills be interested?

CB: I think the Flynn contract could prompt them to move him, but the Seahawks need to find a trade partner that believes he’s a starter. His base salary does not fit for a backup because it goes up to $5.25M and then $6.25M. Unless he’s willing to take a pay cut to go elsewhere Seattle might be stuck with him.

And furthermore I don’t see the Bills being interested even if he were available. As Buddy Nix told us he wants a long term franchise quarterback for the future.


3 – Hey Chris,

Why didn’t Coach Gailey challenge the fumble call in the 4th qtr against the Titans? From the one replay that was shown, it looked like neither the ball or Gilmore were out of bounds. Since this was a critical time and play of the game I was wondering why it wasn’t challenged. Thank you for your time and consideration

Dan Stepanski
Dallas, PA

CB: We at wondered the same thing so we took a look at that play on tape and as the ball bounces near the sideline prior to Stephon Gilmore trying to bat it back in bounds, the nose of the ball is right on the line. It’s difficult to determine whether the nose of the ball is making contact with the sideline, but it’s extremely close.

Knowing that’s before Gilmore even tries to make a play on the ball it’s easier to forgive the absence of a challenge there. Gailey did address this play and said they were not given a good enough replay angle to see if the challenge was worth it. At that point in time preserving your timeouts in the game were becoming critical. Granted if a chance to get the ball back is in play you probably challenge it, but without conclusive video evidence you can understand them not throwing the red flag.

Furthermore the officials would’ve been looking at the same replay angle and likely would have let the play stand as a fumble out of bounds due to lack of conclusive evidence.


4 – Hi Chris,

I saw Chris Kelsay’s press conference regarding lack of effort, and having accountability. Watching the game, it appeared to me that the Bills’ defensive line was fine, and did have a push in the pocket. However, where I noticed a lack of effort was in the linebacking corp, and some in the defensive backfield. Now, I am a native Buffalonian, and have been in Central Florida for just over five years, and  I am still a die hard Bills fan. In my opinion, the players are either not buying into the scheme, or the players themselves, be it veterans or rookies, are not holding each other accountable.

Coaches are important, but they can preach all day long, the players have to perform. The offense is fine, when Fitzpatrick does not throw bone head interceptions. I am just venting. I want the Bills to do well in the worst way. What is your analysis? 

Tony, Ormond Beach, Fl

CB: I don’t think there’s any question that the defensive has underachieved. Head coach Chan Gailey did say that Mario Williams and Marcell Dareus both have to do better in particular. The linebackers in the Titans game did mess up some gap assignments, including the one that Chris Johnson took 83 to the end zone.

Here’s the good news, Kelsay in that same press conference said players that were not pulling their weight were going to be shaken down and held accountable. And in our 1-on-1 interview with Coach Gailey that will air tomorrow on, he told me his players have found a newfound respect for playing for the guy next to them.

“I think that they understand accountability to each other better at this point than maybe they ever have,” said Gailey. “We made that point of emphasis. I think they understand that better. Hopefully that does carry over to the games.”

Let’s hope it makes a difference on the field.


5 – Hey Chris! 

Long time…any chance at letting Morrison suit up and help our struggling defense?  Keep up the good work


CB: When Coach Gailey was asked about possible lineup changes and about Morrison specifically, he said that Morrison is probably going to be needed in the lineup before the season is over. However, it sounded like he was indicating that somebody in the linebacking corps over a 16-game season is likely to go down and at that point they’d plug in Morrison. So I don’t see the veteran taking somebody’s job right now.

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Posted in Inside the Bills

What happened on the INT

Posted by Chris Brown on October 22, 2012 – 11:55 am

Ryan Fitzpatrick’s interception with three minutes remaining and the Bills up six was a mistake that the Buffalo quarterback put on himself. Head coach Chan Gailey in his weekly appearance on WGR Sportsradio 550 explained what happened on the play.

“Fitz thought that the corner was going to squat and take Stevie (underneath),” said Gailey. “We had Stevie breaking out. We had thrown the same pass earlier in the game and Fitz thought that the corner was coming off of Donald (on the sideline) and was going to play Stevie and (Fitz) didn’t see him drop underneath Donald. He threw it out to Donald in the hole between the safety and the corner and the corner had dropped, he didn’t squat.”

“I just got greedy in a situation that I did not have any business being greedy in,” said Fitzpatrick. “It was a dumb throw, dumb decision by me. Third down at the end of the game, game on the line, Chan (Gailey) put the ball in my hands essentially and I threw an interception.”


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Why no two-point conversion tries

Posted by Chris Brown on October 22, 2012 – 10:51 am

Bills head coach Chan Gailey explained why after Buffalo’s two third quarter touchdown drives he chose not to go for the two-point conversion to tie the score or go up by seven.

“In general through the years, I have felt like you do not go for two until you get to the 10, 11 minute mark of the fourth quarter,” said Gailey. “I thought the way the scoring was going there was going to be quite a few other opportunities either way if we needed to do that. You do not know. It was still in the third quarter when we scored. I never have done that. I always have felt like you wait till the end to see if you need it.

“I’ve just seen too many times where it gets out of whack if you try it too quick.”


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Shep: It’s just sickening

Posted by Chris Brown on October 21, 2012 – 8:34 pm

The Bills defense has had their share of problems thus far this season. Bryan Scott was sickened after the loss to New England. Kelvin Sheppard had that same feeling after the one-point loss to Tennessee Sunday.

“On that last drive, if you would’ve asked me or told me we’re putting our defense on the field with a minute to go in the game and it’s 4th-and-10 plus with a minute to go to win the game and put it away I would’ve said there’s no doubt,” Sheppard told “That’s why I’m hurt. When I say me I’m speaking for the whole defense. That’s just unacceptable.

“That’s not on Wannstedt. That’s not on any of the coaches. That’s on the players because the players were in position on almost all of those plays to make the play. It’s not coach putting us in bad positions. It’s the guys that are out there on the field. It’s sickening. It hurts a lot.”


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Posted in Inside the Bills

Chris Johnson not shy about success

Posted by Chris Brown on October 21, 2012 – 8:30 pm

Heading into the Bills game last week, Titans RB Chris Johnson said he “sees a lot of opportunities” in his matchup with the Bills. It qualified as bulletin board material. Unfortunately Buffalo’s run defense wasn’t able to shut him up.

Johnson ran for 195 yards and a pair of touchdowns. It was the third-highest rushing day of his career.

“I don’t think I’ve ever had a bad game versus them, but it seems like my offensive line they come through when we come down here,” he said after the game. “They did a great job of getting on the linemen and getting to the second level of the linebackers and my fullback did a great job of blocking all game.”

In Johnson’s previous two outings against the Bills he rushed for 122 and 153 yards.

“He challenged us and we did not step up to the plate,” said Chris Kelsay. “We had guys out of gaps. We have to look at the film, but we just did not play accountable to the guy next to us.”

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Posted in Inside the Bills

Hasselbeck sees Bills-Titans parallels

Posted by Chris Brown on October 21, 2012 – 11:05 am

Titans QB Matt Hasselbeck sees some parallels between the Bills and Titans in terms of how their seasons have unfolded thus far.

“We did not start out the way we had hoped to, but at the same time we feel like we lost to some good teams,” said Hasselbeck via conference call this week. “We’re a little bit like Buffalo. The games that we’ve lost, we’ve lost by a lot and we weren’t really in ’em, and the games that we’ve won, were closer games, within 10 points or less. We feel like we’re pretty similar to them in that regard.

“You look around the AFC it’s the same kind of thing and obviously when it comes to playoffs, which people will want to talk about and speculate about, it’s going to come down to who wins the division, and there’s a lot of teams like the team we played last week that, you know most of their division games, the Steelers, most of their division games are in the last like six to eight weeks of the season.

“You look at the AFC East, like you said, everybody’s 3-3. With the exception of Houston and Baltimore, everybody’s in it. But everyone can also be out of it quickly if they don’t get their act together and that’s kind of where we are.”

Posted in Inside the Bills

LB McCarthy, DT Casey ques. for Titans

Posted by Chris Brown on October 19, 2012 – 4:06 pm

LB Colin McCarthy and DT Jurrell Casey are both questionable for the Titans on Sunday with it sounding like a strong possibility that McCarthy could be held out of Sunday’s game.

According to reports McCarthy, who has been in an immobilizer boot all week for his ankle injury, is going to be re-evaluated on Saturday. It’s believed at that point that the team may elect to downgrade him to out for Sunday meaning he would miss his third straight game. The quarterback of the defense, the Titans have missed his presence in the lineup.

Meanwhile Casey finally practiced on Friday, albeit on a limited basis, due to a shoulder injury. He too is questionable.

OT Mike Otto is also questionable with a knee injury while LB Patrick Bailey is probable with a hand injury. QB Jake Locker, CB Tommy Campbell and RB Javon Ringer are all out for Sunday.


Posted in Inside the Bills

Bills-Titans blacked out

Posted by Chris Brown on December 1, 2011 – 1:11 pm

Sunday’s game against the Tennessee Titans at Ralph Wilson Stadium has not sold out and will be blacked out on local television.

Tickets are still available for purchase for this weekend’s Bills-Titans matchup and fans may obtain tickets by going online at, by visiting Western New York Ticketmaster outlets or the Ralph Wilson Stadium ticket office, or by calling

Club seats and other premium seating opportunities are also available.

Posted in Inside the Bills

Bills unlikely to sell out Sunday

Posted by Chris Brown on November 28, 2011 – 11:31 am

The Bills are unlikely to sell out their upcoming home game against the Titans this week in time to lift a local blackout.

The team has 12,200 tickets remaining for the game and would need to sell them all prior to 1 pm on Thursday to lift the blackout. For those that want to see the game you can purchase tickets right here or call 1-877-BB-TICKS.

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Posted in Inside the Bills
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