Inside The Bills

Nix on Hangartner release

Posted by Chris Brown on September 6, 2011 – 8:40 pm

Appearing on the Shredd and Ragan show on 103.3 The Edge Tuesday afternoon, Bills GM Buddy Nix was asked about a range of topics including the release of former starting center Geoff Hangartner, who has since signed with Carolina.

Nix gave the following answer.

“Geoff’s a great guy, a great community guy,” he said. “Geoff lacks strength to anchor at the point.  If a guy is a back-up center for us, he’s also got to back-up at guard.  We have 53 players.  When we go into a game 46 of them can play.  Seven offensive linemen is what you want.  You have one guy that backs up the center and both guards.  You have to have a guy who backs up both tackles.  In my opinion, Geoff could not do that.  So that’s what we did.”


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Moving parts at center

Posted by Chris Brown on August 17, 2011 – 7:40 pm

Geoff Hangartner got some of his first snaps with the starters Wednesday night.

Hangartner stepped in at center with the starters in place of Eric Wood. Andy Levitre also took a few reps at center with the ones.

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Fight #2

Posted by Chris Brown on August 8, 2011 – 3:57 pm

A half hour after fight number one there was another in 11-on-11.

Geoff Hangartner opened a hole up the middle and Tyler Thigpen ran through it. But Hangartner kept driving Dotson down and into the ground, which was not appreciated by Dotson.

Dotson got up and started swinging. Hangartner calmly held Dotson at arm’s length by the facemask. Other players stepped in after Hangartner removed Dotson’s helmet.

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Wood to line up at center

Posted by Chris Brown on July 29, 2011 – 5:49 pm

It came as little surprise but Chan Gailey confirmed that Eric Wood will line up at center and compete with Geoff Hangartner.

Gailey said his job is to put the best players on the field and has some guards that he’s trying to give the opportunity to start.

The Bills first practice is Saturday afternoon.

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Pass protection rankings

Posted by Chris Brown on June 9, 2011 – 8:55 am

The stat counters and film reviewers at Pro Football Focus have released Part I of their Pass Protection rankings.

They’re going from worst to first and calculated their findings by taking Pressure per play and multiplying it by the average number of pass blockers per play (multiplied by 1,000). Buffalo ranked 20th in the league. Here was their synopsis for the Bills.

20.  Buffalo Bills (1.71)
Improvement from the Bills. Demetrius Bell isn’t even an average left tackle yet, but he was much better than 2009, and Fred Jackson seemed to finally begin to get what picking up the blitz was all about. But players like Cord Howard still get beat far too often, and the interior is all too readily pushed back. That will need to improve. With Ryan Fitzpatrick still at quarterback they at least have a guy who knows how to avoid sacks.

Pressure Per Play Rank: 21st
Sack % of Pressure Rank: 12th
Average Number of Blockers Per Play Rank: 19th

It would seem to me that the PFF folks were unaware that though complementary of Bell they did not realize he was coming off microfracture surgery and did not feel back to 100 percent until after the bye week last season. Cordaro Howard was learning on the fly as an undrafted rookie. The comment about the interior makes one wonder about how the center position might shake out from the 2011 season knowing there will be competition there between Geoff Hangartner and Eric Wood.

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Hangartner on the radio

Posted by Chris Brown on May 19, 2011 – 3:56 pm

Bills center Geoff Hangartner will be on the Buffalo airwaves Friday morning.

Hangartner is scheduled to be on 103.3 The Edge on the Morning Bull program beginning at 7 am. A lot of fans are interested in knowing what the Bills are doing to stay sharp. Hangartner might shed some light on that subject so be sure to tune in.

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Hangartner “ready to go”

Posted by Chris Brown on December 31, 2010 – 1:23 pm

Bills starting center Geoff Hangartner practiced fully this week and is not even listed on the team’s injury report.

When asked about him head coach Chan Gailey said that Hangartner is “ready to go.” When asked if that meant that Hangartner would start Sunday against the Jets Gailey again said, “He’s ready to go.”

In all likelihood Eric Wood will continue to start at center with Hangartner likely serving in a reserve capacity Sunday, but it’s at least possible that Hangartner could be on the field.

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Hangartner likely to dress

Posted by Chris Brown on December 27, 2010 – 4:31 pm

Bills starting center Geoff Hangartner did not dress Sunday against the Patriots despite getting back into the swing of things in practice during the week. By the sound of it he’s got a much better chance of being dressed for this week’s game against the Jets.

“Geoff is getting a lot closer,” said Gailey. “I think there’s maybe a chance. We’re trying be smart about that with it being the last game. Do we want to risk it? We’ll see how it goes this week. I certainly think he’s got a great chance to be active and if we had an emergency he’d certainly give us the best chance to win. But to expose him to a whole ball game I’m not sure about that.”

Judging Gailey’s comment it’s likely that Hangartner will serve in a reserve capacity Sunday and Eric Wood will make his fourth straight start at center.

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Hangartner may dress

Posted by Chris Brown on December 24, 2010 – 12:53 pm

Bills starting center Geoff Hangartner may dress for Sunday’s game.

Hangartner practiced for a second straight day Friday doing a little more than he did the day before. Head coach Chan Gailey said there’s a chance he’ll be active for Sunday’s game against the Patriots.

“We’re going to list him as questionable, but I don’t know if we’ll activate him or not,” said Gailey. “We’ll see.”

Eric Wood is going to start at center on Sunday regardless of whether Hangartner dresses for the game or not. If he does dress it’s expected that Hangartner would serve in a backup role.

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Hangartner update

Posted by Chris Brown on December 24, 2010 – 11:31 am

Geoff Hangartner was participating in practice for a second straight day, but it doesn’t appear likely that he’ll be returning to the starting lineup.

Eric Wood was still lining up with the first team during individual position drills, with Hangartner working with the second unit. So in all likelihood Hangartner will fill a reserve role on Sunday at best.

Everyone else on Buffalo’s roster was practicing.

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Hangartner update

Posted by Chris Brown on December 23, 2010 – 3:28 pm

Geoff Hangartner returned to practice Thursday, and head coach Chan Gailey is encouraged about his starting center’s outlook moving forward.

“Geoff did a little work in the first part of practice to get back into the swing of things,” said Gailey. “We’ll see toward the end of the week and maybe (he’ll dress), maybe not.”

It’s clear that the Bills aren’t going to rush Hangartner back from his sprained knee, but from the beginning Gailey indicated that Hangartner had a chance to be back after two weeks, and he’s missed each of the last two games.

“I know we’re going to try to be smart, we’re not going to be dumb about it,” said Gailey.

After getting some work on it Thursday, the plan for now is to see how Hangartner feels Friday morning and if he feels good they could have him do a little more in practice Friday. Hangartner was officially listed as a limited participant Thursday.

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Hangartner dressed

Posted by Chris Brown on December 23, 2010 – 1:50 pm

Bills starting C Geoff Hangartner is dressed for practice for the first time in two weeks.

Hangartner, who suffered a sprained knee against the Vikings in Week 13, hasn’t participated in practice at all until Thursday. During the media-viewing portion of practice he didn’t do a whole lot, but had his helmet and pads on during individual position drills.

The rest of Buffalo’s roster was participating with Chris Kelsay and Demetrius Bell back practicing after getting their Wednesday rest days.

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Wood’s play not a surprise

Posted by Chris Brown on December 13, 2010 – 4:31 pm

Bills OL Eric Wood played center for the first time in two seasons Sunday and performed admirably against a pair of respectable nose tackles in Ahtyba Rubin and Shaun Rogers. But his play was fully anticipated to be that good by Buffalo’s coaching staff.

“Eric did a nice job. He handled things well,” said Chan Gailey. “I think people were somewhat surprised by that, but we weren’t at all. We fully expected him to go in there and be able to do what he did. That was a nose man that had played pretty well against some people in the past. I thought it was a positive the way he was able to go fill in and play.”

As for starting center Geoff Hangartner, he’s still on the mend, but won’t play in Miami Sunday.

“He’s better,” Gailey said. “He won’t be ready this week. It’s going to be close really the rest of the year on him, but he’s getting better.”

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Bills will add a lineman

Posted by Chris Brown on December 6, 2010 – 5:27 pm

Bills head coach Chan Gailey doesn’t know from where a new addition will originate, but he does know with Geoff Hangartner and Kraig Urbik down for at least two weeks that they will need to add reinforcements to the active roster for their offensive line.

“We’ll have to get somebody up and running for this week whether it’s a guy off our present practice squad, or whether we bring somebody in or both,” he said Monday.

Buffalo has three linemen on their practice squad in G Marc Dile, G/T Chad Rhinehart and G/T Jason Watkins. None of them have experience at the center spot.

But even if the Bills sign a center in free agency, there’s a good chance he would not know Buffalo’s offensive system well enough to step in right away, leaving Wood as the most obvious answer at center.

The centers that were in training camp for the Bills in the summer that are no longer with the team are undrafted rookie Sean Allen and free agent Christian Gaddis. They would at least have knowledge of Buffalo’s system, but three months have passed since the end of camp so it’s hard to determine if there would be interest there.

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Urbik, Hangartner update

Posted by Chris Brown on December 5, 2010 – 5:01 pm

Both Geoff Hangartner and Kraig Urbik sustained knee injuries in Sunday’s game and did not return. Head coach Chan Gailey provided an update.

“Not good,” said Gailey when asked about the severity of their injuries. “(We’ve) probably lost both of them.”

Urbik replaced Hangartner at center in the first half before getting injured himself in the fourth quarter.

If both cannot go next week against Cleveland the Bills are hoping to have Eric Wood back from his ankle injury next week to play center with Cordaro Howard the likely right guard in such a scenario.

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If you didn’t catch it

Posted by Chris Brown on November 12, 2010 – 9:35 am

Here are the chats that Bills center Geoff Hangartner and guard Andy Levitre had with the fans this week.

Hangartner and Levitre did the chat together and there are two parts. Enjoy.

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Live player chat

Posted by Chris Brown on November 11, 2010 – 9:11 am

Be sure to log on for a chance to chat live with Geoff Hangartner and Andy Levitre.

The Bills two offensive linemen will appear together on’s Skype chat at 12:10 pm today (Thursday), so have your questions ready.

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Peppers in the freak category

Posted by Chris Brown on November 4, 2010 – 8:01 am

New Titans receiver Randy Moss might be the original freak, but Bears DE Julius Peppers fits in that category as well according to one of his former Carolina Panthers teammates.

Bills center Geoff Hangartner, who played with Peppers for four seasons in Carolina, said Peppers’ physical ability is elite.

“The guy is a freak, I’ve see him chase guys down field,” said Hangartner. “We were together for four years so I’ve seen him do some pretty amazing things. We were at training camp one day and we were going to weigh in, you’d have to weigh in and out every practice. He gets on the scale in front of me, he weighs 305 and I weighed 303. It’s almost not fair.”

Peppers does not have his typical sack numbers, but he is getting pressure on opposing passers which has led to hurried and errant throws leading to nine interceptions and 12 forced fumbles. Bills head coach Chan Gailey explains why Peppers doesn’t have his the sack stats expected of him to this point and added that they’ll be taking a similar approach to some of Chicago’s prior opponents.

“The reason he hasn’t had sack numbers is because everybody’s double-teaming him and chipping him and turning the line that way,” said Gailey. “That’s why he hasn’t had [the sack numbers]. He is an amazing football player – a great, great talent. We’re going to do that same thing by the way.”

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Moorman questionable

Posted by Chris Brown on September 17, 2010 – 2:00 pm

Bills punter Brian Moorman was added to the injury report on Friday.

He’s listed as questionable after being unable to practice on Friday. Head coach Chan Gailey downplayed Moorman’s ailment which is listed as a back.

“Brian had a little issue this morning and missed practice,” said Gailey. “But it shouldn’t be anything.”

It was clear that Gailey did not anticipate it being anything that would keep Moorman from playing on Sunday. If he were unable to go however, it’s presumed that Rian Lindell would assume punting duties.

The news is better for starting C Geoff Hangartner (ankle) and starting LB Reggie Torbor (chest). Both are listed as probable for Sunday. Torbor practiced fully all week.

FS Cary Harris was declared out for Sunday with a hamstring injury as was Paul Posluszny (knee).  Rookie LB Antonio Coleman is probable after practicing all week.

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Bills healing up

Posted by Chris Brown on September 16, 2010 – 2:55 pm

Things are looking up for everyone on Buffalo’s injury report with the exception of Paul Posluszny.

Starting C Geoff Hangartner, after missing practice Wednesday, practiced fully on Thursday and is expected to be good to start Sunday.

LB Reggie Torbor practiced fully for a second straight day and looks ready to return to the lineup.

Even special teamer Cary Harris, who suffered a hamstring injury in last week’s game could be up for Sunday though he did not practice Thursday.

“With the exception of Paul we’ve got a chance to get everybody fine for Sunday,” said head coach Chan Gailey.

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