In Week One, the Bills won without raising my blood pressure all that much. I sure hope that can happen again at some point this season.
It was just this summer when I typed about doubting whether Jackson could rate as a true No. 1 running back. Well, I am extremely happy and proud to be wrong. He is an incredibly strong back with deceptive speed due to his long stride. Jackson has excellent hands and not just for catching; his use of his non-ball-carrying hand against defenders is impeccable.
Improving to ninth overall in Bills yards from scrimmage during Sunday’s win, Jackson is more and more reminiscent of another Bills back with an ever-present (to this day) chip on his shoulder: Thurman Thomas. Who would’ve figured the Bills would be counting on the No. 9 overall pick in the 2010 Draft to be his Kenneth Davis?
I’d use the cliche of “wouldn’t want to meet him in a dark alley,” but that’s silly since Fred Jackson is a nice guy. I wouldn’t want to be in a dark alley with him where he feels very threatened by the darkness of the alley, but now we’re splitting atoms.
— Ryan Fitzpatrick was workmanlike in the win and his interception was forgivable. Because the pass was picked off by Jamar Chaney at the apex of his leaping ability, it didn’t look great. Still, I want Fitz to take chances like that in situations like that. It was non-threatening field position to employ gunslinger mode.
His 21-of-27 for 193 yards, TD and INT will be overshadowed by the flashier plays and numbers by some of his teammates, but Fitz was back and pivotal. As evidenced by his heads-up run on third-and-5 late in the goings, sometimes Fitzmagic employs simple cards tricks, not sleight-of-hand.
— I am so glad the Bills will not have to play Michael Vick again this season. He had an awful first half, made a stupid play at the end of the first half and still almost had enough to pull off a road win at the Ralph, where the Bills are now 3-0.
— By the way, I don’t think it’s a coincidence that it was hard to find Danny Batten on the field after his hair-brained late hit to Vick enabled the Eagles to continue what would become a touchdown drive. That hit wasn’t even close to timely. Perhaps Danny loves dogs.
— I can’t believe holding isn’t called more in the NFL. Shawne Merriman seems to have a handful of his jersey in a lineman’s paws during every slow motion replay.
— Drayton Florence is worth every penny. The man who hates to talk to the media — except on his radio show — has essentially become the Bills’ second-half adjustments on defense. AJ Green burning Leodis McKelvin in Cincy? Put Florence on him. Jason Avant out-of-control versus Reggie Corner and others? Drayton Florence forces a fumbleception for Nick Barnett.
— You have to feel good for Barnett after being written-off by the Packers. His Lamfaux Leap carried well into the first row.
— Lesean McCoy is legitimate!
— Eric Wood was much better than the guy he was essentially traded for (Jason Peters) who didn’t play. This means nothing.
— Four members of Philly’s starting offense faced UB during their college careers: King Dunlap (Auburn), Danny Watkins (Baylor), Jeremy Maclin (Mizzou) and McCoy (Pitt). Other former UB foes: Dion Lewis (Pitt), Cullen Jenkins (Central Mich) and Jaiquawn Jarrett (Temple). I’m a Bulls nerd, still off the high of UB’s thrilling win over Ohio last night. Throw in US 1-0 Honduras and the Sabres weekend and I’m dealing out high-fives like the kid who got the last ice cream sandwich.
Stat line I liked…
Naaman Roosevelt, five catches, 41 yards
— He lacks the speed of Donald Jones, but it was terrific to see the Bills not take a huge hit when Jones left the game with an ankle injury.
Stat line I didn’t like…
Jason Avant, nine catches, 139 yards
— I’m not sure he was tackled by a corner more than once. Ate Reggie Corner up for a good deal of the game.
Jackson and George Wilson. I typed about Jackson already, but Wilson was the Bills defense in the first half, including an incredibly tough tackle to force a 4th-and-inches early on.
My goodness does 4-1 feels at least three wins better than 3-2, despite what the numbers actually represent!
I feel a whole lot better about next week when you couple the Bills win and Fred Jackson’s continued strong-running with the Seahawks putting up 35-plus on the Giants and Jackson’s former No. 2, Marshawn Lynch, going Beast Mode all over New York this week. Buffalo 35, NY Giants 30.