The Bills take on the Chiefs today at Arrowhead Stadium. The Buffalo offense is ranked 28th in the league with 293 yards per game. The defense is 28th with 379 yards allowed. Kansas City under Romeo Crenell has the 12th ranked offense. Quarterback Matt Casell is showing signs of improvement. The defense is 11th overall, giving up 333 yards per game. The Chiefs are 7 – 1/2 point favorites.
Archive for October, 2010
Despite their 0 – 6 record, the Bills have had brushes with victory this season. C. J. Spiller had a 95 yard kickoff return in the Patriots game. Buffalo went on to lose 38 – 30. The team was defeated by the Jaguars after blowing an early 13 – 3 lead. Last week the club had 506 yards of offense against the Ravens. The Bills lost nonetheless in overtime. Unfortunately close is not enough in the NFL. Fans and players alike are frustrated and looking for redemption in the Kansas City game.
Bills safety Jairus Byrd practiced with the team yesterday. He had missed workouts earlier in the week with an injury. Terrence McGee and Keith Ellison were limited in practice. Cornell Green, sidelined with a knee injury, did not participate. Demetrius Bell, recovering from knee surgery, resumed practice. Injuries continue to plague the Bills who are searching for their first win.
Bills receiver Stevie Johnson is having a standout year. He has scored a touchdown in each of the last 4 games. The 6 – 3, 200 pound Johnson had 8 catches for 158 yards and a touchdown against Baltimore. Drafted in 2008 from Kentucky, he got the number 2 job after James Hardy was released this fall. He leads the team with 25 receptions for 372 yards and 5 touchdowns this season.
The Bills are preparing to take on the 4 – 2 Chiefs. Kansas City is first in the AFC West, coming off a 42 – 20 win over the Jaguars. Quarterback Matt Cassel was 13 of 18 passes for 193 yards and 2 touchdowns. The Chiefs have the best rushing game in the league, while the Bills are last in allowing rushing yards. The Buffalo offense has shown signs of life despite adversity. Ryan Fitpatrick is 81 of 128 for 969 yards and 11 touchdowns. Fred Jackson has 55 carries for 230 yards, and Steve Johnson has 25 receptions for 372 yards and 5 touchdowns. Kansas City is favored by 7.5 points at home.
Bills coach Chan Gailey has benched Aaron Maybin. The outside linebacker was removed from the active roster. The much heralded first round draft pick in 2009 has been a bust. He has no sacks and only 23 career tackles. Gailey said he is going with the rookie outside linebackers, Antonio Coleman and Arthur Moats. Maybin needs to get his act together or he is likely to be gone from the team.
The Ravens beat the Bills 37 – 34 in overtime. Buffalo was ahead 24 – 10 late in the first half before allowing 24 unanswered points. A Ryan Fitzpatrick touchdown pass to Lee Evans in the fourth quarter pulled the Bills within 3 points. Rian Lindell then kicked a 50 yard field goal with 4 seconds left to put the game into overtime. Baltimore won on a 38 yard field goal after Ray Lewis stripped the ball from tight end Shawn Nelson. Ryan Fitzpatrick had his best game of the season, going 29 of 43 for 373 yards and 4 touchdowns. His performance was marred by 4 turnovers, including 2 interceptions. The Bills played their hearts out but are still looking for their elusive first win.
The Ravens are 14 point favorites over the Bills. Buffalo has the worst scoring defense in the league, allowing 17 points per game. The team has given up 34 or more points in each of the last 4 contests. Baltimore under John Harbaugh is coming off a 23 – 20 overtime loss to New England. Pro Bowl safety Ed Reed returns to play after sitting out the first 6 games. Quarterback Joe Flacco is on a roll, with several talented receivers. The Bills are likely to remain winless after today’s matchup.
The lack of a succession plan hurts the Bills, according to an article in The Street. The report highlights the uncertainty surrounding the franchise’s future when owner Ralph Wilson dies. This has adversely impacted the team’s valuation. Forbes Magazine estimates that the Bills value has declined 12% from $909 million last year to $799 million this year. The club is in the bottom quarter of the NFL in terms of stadium value and ticket receipts. The article cites Buffalo’s declining population and 25% poverty and high unemployment. This contrasts with the affluence and dynamism of metropolitan Toronto, the team’s future home. The Bills Toronto Series has begun the transition out of Buffalo.
Bills nose tackle Kyle Williams missed practice yesterday due to an ankle injury. Coach Chan Gailey said he has a legitimate chance to play against the Ravens. Drafted in the fifth round in 2006, Williams anchors the struggling line. The Buffalo defense ranks last in the league in stopping the run. Either Torell Troup or Spencer Johnson will replace him if he can not start.