Inside The Bills

Fan Friday 1-16

Posted by Chris Brown on January 16, 2015 – 12:24 pm

It was a historical week for the Bills franchise with the hiring of Rex Ryan as the 18th head coach in team history. Now for your questions from email at and on Twitter @ChrisBrownBills.

1 – Chris,

With the coming to an end what positions do you think need more depth for the offseason besides QB? Offensive line or maybe tight end or defensive end in case Hughes leaves? Can you also explain to fans that the Bills would have taken Eric Ebron, and trading up for Sammy wasn’t as risky as many thought. This year’s list of WRs isn’t as deep.

CB: As for positional needs the guard spot is right up at the top. I think a big running back is another potential need for two reasons. First, it’s unclear as to whether C.J. Spiller will return to the team with the ability to become a free agent this offseason. Second, a power run game is going to need a big back comparable to Frank Gore or Eddie Lacy. Buffalo has a big back in Boobie Dixon, but he was relegated to backup duty under offensive coordinator Greg Roman in San Francisco. Fred Jackson and Bryce Brown are capable, but it might be time to draft a young back to add to the mix. An end/OLB would be a need if Hughes doesn’t return, but they can’t wait on that.

As for last year’s draft, it was my understanding that if the Bills stayed at nine that Eric Ebron was the most likely target, assuming the likes of Sammy Watkins was off the board.


2 – Hi Chris,
My name is Ben Cary, a dedicated bills fan from West Seneca studying at Miami University of Ohio. Are the Bills interested in pursuing Jay Cutler, now that the Bears might be shopping him? I think he could fix a lot of our quarterback issues. He has the raw talent to make the plays none of our recent QB’s have been able to. I also think he would find success in our run first offense because he wouldn’t be forced to throw the ball as much as Chicago made him. What are your thoughts?

Has Doug Whaley thought about this as well? I love the improvement we’ve made this year and can’t wait to see what the future of the franchise holds!

Thanks so much
Ben Cary

CB: If the Bills are interested in pursuing Jay Cutler in a trade scenario they certainly can’t state it publicly since he’s property of the Bears. That could open the team up to tampering charges. While there’s no debating that he is physically gifted as a quarterback there is a reason his second franchise is reportedly looking to move him.

I don’t dismiss your point that a run first approach on offense could decrease some of the ill-advised plays Cutler tries to make. While talent is a big asset to have as a quarterback, leadership is a close second and that’s where I think Cutler struggles as a player.

I can’t tell you what Doug Whaley is thinking, but it’s my belief that the Bills will look to add a veteran quarterback to the roster. Whether Cutler is under consideration remains to be seen.


3 – @ChrisBrownBills I see the two lineman the #bills have signed to futures deals are both under 300 lbs. Will this be the trend going forward? More athleticism at guard seems logical, right?


CB: Greg Roman’s power run game is pretty multiple. That being said having guards who are capable of pulling is a plus. You also have to be able to push the pile so I don’t know that a trend can be taken from the two most recent OL signings.


4 – @ChrisBrownBills do u believe Whaley that he would take a QB in the 2nd or 3rd if the right one was available? Petty or Hundley. #bills


CB: I think Whaley in that radio interview this week was just trying to emphasize the fact that they do not rule anything out with every draft pick they hold. If a quarterback is the best player on the board, and there isn’t a pressing positional need with a prospect that is comparable in terms of grade to said quarterback, then they’ll take a QB. Knowing this is his approach he cannot rule out taking a QB. In reality I see the Bills adding a veteran quarterback this offseason.


5 – Hi Chris,

What is a typical NFL halftime like for a team? Does the head coach address the full team the entire time? Do position groups meet? Are the discussions strategic or motivational? Thanks


CB: At halftime there isn’t a whole lot of time. With the coaches from the booth taking an extra five minutes to get down to the locker room, there’s only about 7-8 minutes to go over things. The head coach will briefly huddle with the coordinators before making decisions on various adjustments for the second half. In most cases the teams breaks off into offensive and defensive groups with their coordinators. They address what has to be corrected and then what some of the adjustments will be. After plotting out strategy the head coach or a team captain might say a few inspirational words and it’s back out to the field.

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Posted in Inside the Bills

Cutler not thrilled with Palmer joining Bills

Posted by Chris Brown on August 27, 2014 – 9:23 am

Chicago Bears QB Jay Cutler wasn’t jumping for joy that his former teammate and fellow quarterback Jordan Palmer found another job in the league after he was released on Sunday. That’s because Palmer signed with the Bears Week 1 opponent, the Buffalo Bills. Cutler believes there will be some intelligence gathering on Chicago’s offense by Buffalo’s defensive staff with Palmer.

“It’s not an ideal situation,” Cutler told the Chicago Tribune Tuesday. “It’s not exactly what you’d want. He can give them a few things I’m sure. He’ll be meeting with (Bills defensive coordinator Jim) Schwartz pretty much immediately.”

When asked about what Palmer would be able to share with Buffalo’s defensive staff Cutler said there are some important elements and indicated that some changes might be necessary.

“He knows snap counts, some of the stuff we do with some of our checks, what plays we like,” Cutler said. “But they still have to defend it. So I don’t think we’ll change much if anything. Maybe a few tweaks here and there. But we’ll just have to go play football.”

Bills head coach Doug Marrone downplayed the intelligence gathering angle on Tuesday indicating that it wouldn’t be pursued by him with Palmer.

“No (I won’t),” said Marrone. “But I do have a lot of respect for Marc Trestman and Aaron Kromer. They’re good coaches and they do a good job so I know he was coached well. I’m not part of that hey let’s bring the guy in and get information. I think that would be very disrespectful to Jordan if I did that honestly. My conversation with Jordan was, ‘I’m happy to see you and happy to meet you. I’m going to give you an opportunity to get a position. We’re going to do whatever we can to get you ready for this game and play you.'”

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Posted in Inside the Bills

Cutler numbers vs. Bills

Posted by Chris Brown on November 6, 2010 – 10:33 am

Bears QB Jay Cutler has faced the Bills twice before in his career and has some fat numbers yardage-wise.

Cutler threw for over 300 yards in both meetings with Buffalo while playing for the Denver Broncos with a win at Buffalo in 2007 (15-13) on a last second field goal and a loss in Denver in 2008 (30-23). Here’s his cumulative stat line vs. the Bills.

He went 48-84 (57.1%) passing for 663 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions. He averaged 7.89 yards per attempt. He was also sacked twice and had a passer rating of 76.6. His longest pass play from scrimmage in those two games was 36 yards.

With a new team, new receivers and a coordinator that likes to go deep it’s hard to say what Cutler will be on display Sunday in Toronto.

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Posted in Inside the Bills

Cassel deal will be jumping off point for Edwards

Posted by Chris Brown on July 15, 2009 – 3:04 pm

Matt Cassel’s new deal (6-$63M-$28M guaranteed) with the Chiefs naturally impacts the quarterback contract market in the NFL, but his breakout year last season could be used as a parallel for Trent Edwards.

Edwards is entering the third year of a four-year rookie deal. He’s the unquestioned starter, but outside the organization fans still hope, more than know, he’s the long term answer for the Bills.

If Edwards puts up a monster year in 2009, it’s not unrealistic to assume that he could command Matt Cassel money. Cassel had no NFL resume until 2008. To his credit he took advantage of it. Provided Edwards does the same this season it would be difficult to deny him similar money.

And that’s big time cash. Cassel is going to pocket $40.5M over the first three years in the deal.

Some might think it’s better to sign Edwards to an extension right now, knowing the cost would only be higher after a big statistical year and presumably after Jay Cutler is signed to an extension by the Bears, which will only drive QB cost up further.

But the Bills are in a tough spot. In an ideal world, even though the organization believes strongly in Edwards’ ability, you’d think they’d still like to see him put up the big year before rewarding him with a long term contract.

Where do you stand? Extension now or after a big year when costs are only going to be higher?

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Posted in Inside the Bills

Cutler trade increase value of Bills’ pick?

Posted by Chris Brown on April 3, 2009 – 2:19 pm

With Jay Cutler now traded to the Chicago Bears, could the trade value of Buffalo’s 11th pick now increase knowing the Broncos, who pick 12th, will be looking to add a quarterback?

If Mark Sanchez gets by San Francisco at 10, the Bills could be fielding a bunch of calls from teams that might be interested in trading up to 11 to leapfrog Denver to make sure they get Sanchez.

Getting a potential franchise quarterback is monumental stuff so NFL clubs are usually willing to pay a little more. Here is a list of teams, and where they pick, who might consider moving up to beat Denver to Sanchez.

NY Jets – 17th pick
Likelihood of Jets trading up is minimal especially with a division rival. With only six picks in the draft this year they don’t have much to offer either.

Tampa Bay – 19th pick
There’s no secret that the Bucs need a signal caller big time. But will defensive-minded head coach Raheem Morris make a bold move? Tampa has 8 picks, but no second rounder.

Detroit – 20th pick
In all likelihood the Lions will take Matt Stafford number one, making the need to move up to 11 moot to land Sanchez. But if they take an OT first like Baylor’s Jason Smith, this could be a possibility.

Minnesota – 22nd pick
Tarvaris Jackson and Sage Rosenfels are the only answers you need here, but the Vikings don’t have a ton to work with either with just six picks, two of which are in the 7th.

Carolina – 59th pick
The Panthers could use a replacment for Jake Delhomme, but they just don’t have the ammo with no first round pick and only 5 picks total. They’d have to throw in picks from 2010 or include players.

Denver could also be included in this conversation. If Sanchez is on the board with the Bills on the clock, they might get so spooked that another team is trying to leapfrog them for the QB (the media backlash on the heels of Cutler debacle would be terrible) they might do a deal with Buffalo just to move up one spot to 11.

I’ll admit I’d be surprised if such a move happens, but it only takes one team to be enamored with a quarterback for it to take place, so if Sanchez doesn’t go in the top 10, Buffalo could make an advantageous trade come draft weekend.

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Posted in Inside the Bills

Cutler to be moved by draft day?

Posted by Chris Brown on March 30, 2009 – 11:18 am

It’s total speculation, but the Denver Post thinks it’s possible that the Broncos could move Jay Cutler by draft weekend. I believe they’ll move heaven and earth to keep him.

Besides there’s no urgency to trade the guy knowing his value really isn’t going to change before or after the draft. Even if another NFL team drafts a quarterback, do you think they wouldn’t turn around and trade that rookie if Cutler was coming the other way?

The Broncos have time to let the situation settle down and hope that Cutler responds by phone instead of just text.

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Cutler and Scheffler to Redskins?

Posted by Chris Brown on March 17, 2009 – 6:52 pm

Well here’s the latest rumor on this Cutler saga so take it for what it’s worth. According to the Bleacher report, yes I know… risky, it’s a three-way trade with Cutler, Scheffler and a Browns 3rd round pick going to Washington, Chris Cooley, Jason Campbell and a Denver 5th rounder to Cleveland and Brady Quinn and Washington S LaRon Landry going to Denver.

Oh and they say the teams will announce it at 5. Of course they lead the story off by saying ‘This is unconfirmed.’

Is it wrong for me to be skeptical? I just don’t see it all coming together this fast, especially with the Broncos apparently set to try to one more time to convince Cutler to stay put. Ah the viral power of the internet! Is this truth or fiction? You’ve been warned.

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Posted in Inside the Bills

Jets don’t have QB to swap for Cutler

Posted by Chris Brown on March 17, 2009 – 1:36 pm

As much speculation as there is in New York right now about the Jets possibly making a play for Jay Cutler I don’t see it happening. First, they don’t have many attractive chips they can offer Denver outside of the 17th pick.

The Broncos want a starting QB in return, which ironically is what Denver was trying to acquire in the first place, when Cutler got wind of what new head coach Josh McDaniels was trying to do (acquire Matt Cassel).

More importantly, with new head coach Rex Ryan preaching a physical defensive style to win games, they probably don’t want a QB like Cutler. Sure he’s a great physical talent, but he takes too many risks and sometimes believes a little too much in what his arm can do. Granted he has a great arm, but his decision making is suspect at times and gets him into trouble almost as much as it helps him.

The Jets aren’t going to win with defense if Cutler is slinging it all over the pitch and throws 20 picks. As much as the NY media might put heat on the Jets to get him, I’m not convinced they’ll pull the trigger because without a starting QB to offer in return they’d have to grossly overpay to get him.

Posted in Inside the Bills

Lions still in hunt for Cutler

Posted by Chris Brown on March 16, 2009 – 3:29 pm

Looks like the Lions are still very much in the race for Jay Cutler’s services should the quarterback’s reported demand to be traded happen.

That according to Booth Newspapers ( had an initial report that the Lions and Bucs were two teams initially talking with the Broncos a couple of weeks ago. Apparently the Lions will continue talking this week with Denver.

We all know that Detroit has a lot of cards to play particularly in the form of draft picks with five picks in the top 82.

Posted in Inside the Bills

Bills practicing outside

Posted by Chris Brown on December 18, 2008 – 4:42 pm

For the first time in a month the Bills are practicing outside here on Thursday. The team has been practicing in their Fieldhouse for a while, but with the forecast in Denver expected to be in the single digits Sunday, it’s probably a good idea to get out in the elements.

Denver head coach Mike Shanahan is encouraged that Jay Cutler played well on a cold rainy day in New York a few weeks back, but he’s wondering how both quarterbacks will perform in Sunday’s forecast frozen conditions.

“Cutler’s a guy who enjoys the elements. He played great in New York in that rainstorm we had,” said Shanahan. “We haven’t played with the conditions we’ll probably have on game day being somewhere around zero. but we’ll see if he can do it then.”

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Posted in Inside the Bills
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