Hey Bills Fans,
Two weeks in a row--what a bad feeling. I’m sure you guys are just as embarrassed as us after this weekend. You think you are a good team and you know the importance of a win, and then a day like this Sunday comes along. Rough. If you are a reporter or maybe even some fans, your thoughts immediately go to, They're through, or Same ole' Bills. But if you are a Buffalo Bills football player, you get over it, do the math and know that none of it is true. The only way we are "through” is if we believe that and stop working our hardest. Not going to happen on this team. If we finish the last seven games like we started at 5-2, we give ourselves a post-season chance. If we do one better at 6-1, it’d be hard to keep us out of the playoffs. And although Cincinnati and the Giants are good football teams, we beat ourselves in those games. We know we could have been 7-0. It’s not impossible and it’s very attainable. It’s just up to us to go out and do it. It all starts with Miami, this week is all that matters, and we must get a win and show we can play like we did the first half of the season.
I told you I wasn’t overly impressed with my performance from the Jets game and made sure to really focus and work to improve against Dallas. Good news is I did make improvements. I was not perfect this week, (which is a good thing, you never want to be perfect and lose) but I did gain ground and I know to keep at it and I will keep making strides.
Now, I'm going to take the time to answer some of your questions that you were kind enough to send my way.
1) Who do you think has been the worst injury to the Bills this season? -Dave in Rochester
This is a tough question to answer because I believe a football team is built like a puzzle and to be truly great all pieces must be in a place. All of our injured guys are important and had a role to fill. That being said if I had to narrow it to one at this point in the season, I’d have to say Shawne Merriman. It’s so much easier to do this in retrospect then at the time. At the time, Shawne did not have great numbers and many thought he had been underperforming, but in reality he pressured the quarterback. He may not have had great sack numbers but he was always close enough to pressure the quarterback and make him throw the ball sooner than he would like. It seems as of late we have been getting beat because the quarterback has been sitting in the pocket throwing at will.
2) How hard is it to balance family and football and do you and your family reside in Buffalo year-round? - Mike in Gates
I can’t answer the second part because I don’t want to give too much insight as to who I am! The balance of family and football is something that takes time to master and it takes a great family to truly make it work properly. During the season, there is a rigorous schedule that must be kept. It doesn’t matter what you are in the middle of, when it is time to be at the stadium you must drop everything and go. A less understanding wife could get very upset with this and create problems. If you have kids, sometimes just walking up the stairs at the end of a long day to tuck them in could sound like the hardest task of the day. A lot of times your wife will pick up the slack during the season to allow you to keep focused and do what’s needed on the field. The good news is that the off-season gives you a lot of time to more than make up for slacking during the season. It’s the off-season that allows you to spend time with family and not worry about schedules letting them know they are the most important thing in your life.
3) Do you think the rest of the league has finally caught onto you guys? - Jim in Greece
I don’t think the league has caught on to us, I think the league has just started to respect us. Take our offense for example: they were downright dominant to start the season and as of late have started to struggle. I think the biggest cause is respect. When you earn the RESPECT of others, they are forced to reevaluate themselves and prepare differently. At the beginning it was easy, this is how the opposing team played defense and this is how we were going to beat it. As we started to gain respect, the defense would scheme for us specifically and throw different looks at us to try and beat us. Look for that to continue, but look for us to find ways to beat the different looks as well.
Alright guys, I’ll catch up with you on Friday before the trip down to Miami.
(For Now) Your No-Named Buffalo Bill