Today in a nutshell, courtesy of a brilliant photo from the AP’s Eric Gay.
— Thomas Chandler Channing Lewis Gailey: give the ball to C.J. Spiller more.
Nine points aren’t going to do it and I’m certainly not calling Ryan Fitzpatrick a quarterbacking answer, but I am not even remotely interesting in putting his name on the list of reasons the Bills lost to the Texans`.
For the first three quarters of this game, the Bills had drives that featured: a shanked makable field goal, a Scott Chandler drop off his hands, a Stevie Johnson drop off his numbers and a Donald Jones miss on a slightly under-thrown ball. In the fourth we saw another clean drop by Chandler and Fred Jackson not making a play on a catchable ball. Throw in the fact that the Texans defensive line resembled Gang Green versus this Bills O-line and you’ll start to get a clear picture of why Buffalo lost.
— For years fans asked for the Bills to develop the screen passes that New England used to burn Buffalo time and time again. Now the Bills seem to use them more than any team in the history of mankind, which kinda defeats the purpose of the screen pass.
Defensive line: “Hey guys, they’re letting us RIGHT in, AGAIN… Oh, right. STAY BACK.”
— How about the drive where the Bills opened with a wide receiver screen to T.J. Graham followed by another on the other side of the field to C.J. Spiller. They earned a total of five yards, which divided by two is 2.5 yards-per-play. Spiller was averaging 6.5 on the ground at that point, but hey, keep slinging it!
— Arian Foster is the best back currently getting a bunch of carries in the NFL, but his biggest run of the night came on a play that was almost a mirror of Chris Johnson’s massive run against the Bills. A massive hole opened up because Nigel Bradham — it was Nick Barnett versus the Titans — got sucked into a block and Foster did the rest. He’s a decisive runner and one of my favorite football players, though he was more of a vegan villain to me today.
— I’m not here to rail against an injured guy, but Aaron Williams needs to do a Champ Kind and sit a few plays out, watch for a while. He looks absolutely lost for a player most scouts seemed to acknowledge as a safety. When the Bills let Jairus Byrd walk — ugh — look for Williams to get a second chance at a fruitful career. He just doesn’t look comfortable or even familiar at corner.
— My good friend Jeremy White of WGR will appreciate this Occam’s Razor pull of mine from the smart Twitter of Brian Koziol.
— This game felt a lot like the 17-16 loss to the Colts (score might be wrong) where Rian Lindell missed the game-winning kick. It obviously wasn’t, but it certainly reminds me of SevenandNineville.
— It bears repeating or at least rephrasing, that was the least amount of time I can remember Fitz having in the pocket in a long, long time.
— Houston has a player named Shiloh.
— Pretty much done with the Wildcat. Isn’t the league? Do we have to wait two years until after the next next big thing to see that in Buffalo, too? Worn out whatever welcome it had.
— Seriously with the drops?
— More to come…
Stat line I liked…
Mario Williams, six tackles, two for loss including a sack
– He wasn’t a game-buster, but he was good enough to make me think the controversial and suspect torn ligament exposure means something.
Stat line I didn’t like…
T.J. Graham, three receptions, two yards
– I know he was drafted for the future and as a project, but downfield threats generally require receiving the ball down the field.
Spiller and punter Shawn Powell
– The UB Bulls gave up a game-tying touchdown with under :30 to play in the fourth quarter, then returned a kick into Miami territory that included a stiff-arm. Then their kicker Patrick Clarke nailed a 50-yard field goal and everyone smiled and said, “Let’s beat Western Michigan at 3:30 at UB Stadium next Saturday.”
– At New England. I don’t like this game one bit and I think it can challenge the morale of the team deep into the offseason. I like Buffalo to stick in it but call it two touchdowns too much. Brady & the Pats over Fitz & the Bills, 38-23.