Playoffs still a long shot

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The Buffalo Bills haven’t gone to the playoffs since the 1999, which ended in the Music City Miracle. The team has some talent, but they are still going to be a long shot to make the playoffs.

The simple reason is their division rival New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady.

Brady’s rookie year was in 2000, which also happens to be the first season of the drought. It’s not a coincidence that the Bills haven’t made the playoffs since then. There is one problem this year for Bills fans.

That is Brady isn’t slowing down at 39-years-old.

Most quarterbacks by now are beat up, suffered numerous injuries and are tired of the daily NFL grind. However, that isn’t Brady as he is planning to play a lot longer.

“I’d like to play until my mid-forties,” Brady told Peter King of Sports Illustrated in an interview. “Then I’ll make a decision. If I’m still feeling like I’m feeling today, who knows? Now those things can always change. You do need long-term goals too. I know next year is not going to be my last year.”

Until Brady retires or his performance drops dramatically; the playoffs most likely will be a pipe dream for Bills fans.

 

Pegula’s shine in time of crisis

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Kim and Terry Pegula faced a big crisis this offseason with both the Buffalo Bills and Sabres needing new general managers and head coaches. Even under intense scrutiny the Pegula’s shine.

The couple that owns both teams faced such intense scrutiny that some called the Bills dysfunctional.

“His issue hasn’t been that he’s overbearing or meddling, a common early problem for the billionaires who buy teams,” Albert Breer of MMQB.si.com. “It’s the opposite: He hasn’t done nearly enough to align his organization.”

The Pegulas were quoted in the article that they like collaborative organizations. The problem with the rest of the NFL world is that this is a foreign concept. This a league filled with big name leaders like Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones and former Denver Broncos quarterback, who is now the team’s executive vice president of football operations and current general manager.

The reason the Bills were dysfunctional wasn’t due to their owners, but due to a general manager that was meddling, confrontational, simply doesn’t fit in the collaborative mold and most importantly isn’t very good at being a NFL general manager.

First, many writes have forgotten a 2014 incident between former Bills head coach Doug Marrone, some front office personnel and former general manager Doug Whaley. The front office didn’t like how certain players weren’t getting enough playing time. Those players were wide receiver Robert Woods, offensive guard/center Kraig Urbik and offensive tackle Cyrus Kouandjio.

Woods is nothing more that a number two wide receiver, who signed this offseason with the Los Angeles Ram. Urbik is a backup now with the Miami Dolphins and Kouandjio is nothing short of a complete disaster with the latest incident in this saga being an incident with the police half-naked just off the highway.

The real reason that the Bills haven’t made the playoffs is simply Whaley is just bad at being an NFL general manager to the point where one has to question his ability to evaluate incoming NFL Draft prospects.

In the NFL first round picks are gold as they can make or break your team.  That definitely is the case for Whaley as he foolishly gave up a 2015 NFL Draft pick to trade up and take wide receiver Sammy Watkins. All you have to do is look at the rest of the wide receivers in that first round to know how bad Whaley is.

Bills fans all remember that Odell Beckham Jr. was available to them at ninth overall as the New York Giants took him 12th overall. The problem is the team could have traded down and still got a stud wide receiver as that year was loaded with wide receivers. The rest of the round included Mike Evans, who was taken seventh overall by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Brandin Cooks, 20th by the New Orleans Saints, and Kelvin Benjamin, 28th by the Carolina Panthers.

So, here is a look at their career numbers, which is organized by draft position:

Watkins: 37 games with 153 receptions for 2,459 yards receiving and 17 touchdowns

Evans: 46 games with 238 receptions for 3,578 yards receinv and 27 touchdowns

Beckham Jr.: 43 games with 288 receptions for 4,122 yards receiving and 35 touchdowns

Cooks: 42 games with 215 receptions for 2,861 yards receiving and 20 touchdowns

Benjamin: 32 games with 136 receptions for 1,949 yards receiving and 16 touchdowns

Finally on the Bills front, let’s not forget another big blunder this offseason that sealed his fate

One of the big headlines during the 2016 NFL season was if the Bills were going to resign cornerback Stephon Gilmore. The thing is most smart NFL teams tag franchise players like Gilmore and then trade them to a team for draft picks to get compensation, which the team did in 2009 with offensive tackle Jason Peters. Whaley didn’t do that and Gilmore signed with the New England Patriots, which would get any general manager in the NFL fired.

The Bills however look to be in a solid place as the team hired Carolina Panthers defensive coordinator Sean McDermott to be their head coach and hired Panthers assistant general manager Brandon Beane as their general manager. They also made a solid trade in last April’s NFL Draft as they traded down with the Kansas City Chiefs for a 2018 first rounder and still got a cornerback that they liked.

As for the Sabres their problem can simply boiled down to one point. Former general manager Tim Murray got too greedy and made a terrible trade that cost his team a solid young defenseman.

During the 2016 NHL Draft, Murray traded for Flordia Panther defenseman Dmitry Kulikov and the 33rd overall pick for defenseman Mark Pysyk, the 38th and 89th overall picks. The only way this trade works out is if center Rasmus Asplund, who was taken with the 33rd overall pick, turns out to be a good one.

That is easily fixable for the Sabres as they have four solid defenseman and two young defensemen.

The Sabres top four is already determined with Rasmus Ristolainen, Jake McCabe, Josh Georges and Zach Bogosian.   As for their young defensemen those would be Brady Ausin and Brendan Guhle.

Austin played five games near the end of the regular season for the Sabres and just finished his second season with the Sabres minor league team the Rochester Americans. So, he may be ready to make the jump to the NHL this year.  As for Guhle, he will be 20-years-old this summer, which means he will certainly be sent to Rochester to develop his game.

So, the Sabres are stacked with players and got off on the right foot as they hired Pittsburgh Penguin associate general manager Jason Botterill. That just leaves their head coach.

Give the Pegulas some creditas it takes great courage to stand up for what you believe in. Like it or not they have done just that as both organizations will be teams where front office personnel and head coaches will work together for one common goal.

 

McDermott must show decisiveness

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The Buffalo Bills introduced Sean McDermott as their new head coach. McDermott displayed a hard working methodical manner. While that is all well and good Monday thru Saturday, McDermott must show decisiveness on Sunday.

The second question McDermott was given, who was WGR 550 reporter Sal Cappacio, which came from why he decided on coming to Buffalo.

“Yeah, you know Sal when I looked at this job I had done my research and you will get to know me soon enough here, I am a pretty meticulous and thorough guy,” McDermott started. “In my opinion this was the best job on the market. Some people may not agree with it, but it is important how I feel.”

We have heard that a lot of times, but what made it true was what he continued with.

“I say it was the best job on the market for a couple reasons namely the ownership of Terry and Kim (Pegula),” he continued. “I have seen what great ownership looks like and we have two great owners in Terry and Kim who are willing to give anything to this football team and this organization, and the city of Buffalo. Secondly when you talk about a fan base I have been up here and I have played here before and I have seen those fans, capacity crowd hanging over that railing screaming while we were trying to do something on the other sideline and that is what I want to be apart of.”

Mc Dermott’s methodical nature was overwhelminglying clear when he asked what kind of defense he would run.

“Whether we’ll be a 4-3 or a 3-4, I come from a 4-3 background,” he answered. “I’ve worked with a 3-4 as well. Again, strategically right now I’m not going to say we’re going to be– I don’t want to get into that right now. I’m going to put the players in position to be successful.”

As for calling the plays, McDermott stated he will be involved in all facets of the game. So everything will fall onto him.

In the end, McDermott has the all the the old of making the Bills great. The question is can he do it on Sunday when it matters the most.

 

 

Bills drought could get over 20-years-old

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Many Buffalo Bills fans are about to come to the age where they are legally eligible to vote. At the same time they have never seen their team in the playoffs as it’s been 17 seasons since they last were. The way things are going they will be legally able to drink before they do.

Things change in the National Football every year, but one thing remains the same. In order to win in the NFL you need a franchise quarterback.

The Bills haven’t had one since Jim Kelly retired.

They don’t have one from lack of trying. In the first round of the 2003 and 2013 NFL Draft the Bills took J.P. Losman and E.J. Manuel. Both have turned out to be major busts.

That leads up to their current dilemma.

For the past two seasons their starter has been Tyrod Taylor. A quarterback that has been their best since the drought started as he thrown for 3,058 yds, 37 tds, 12 int and rush for 1,148 yds and 10 tds. That is beside the fact that his best wide receiver Sammy Watkins was out half the year!

The problem is the team is built for right now. Many of their star player like defensive end/outside linebacker Jerry Hughes is in the their upper 20s. So, what it means is this.

The Bills have a three year window with their current roster. I say that based that Bills General Manager Doug Whaley is on his last chance. So, if the coach he hires in the coming weeks don’t work out three years then the team will have to go through a major rebuild.

A major rebuild happens whenever a new general manager comes aboard.

From there he hires a head coach has similar ideals as he has in a roster. Then the head coach fills out his staff based on his ideals.

From there the GM will purge the roster of players he doesn’t want. In the Bills case it will be players like Hughes, left tackle Cordy Glenn and defensive tackle Marcel Dareus. That will fetch draft picks in return that they will need to fill the roster.

From there the GM conducts the draft and right after hires a new scouting staff. The reason is the Draft is the end of their year for the scouting staff and it would be too much work to hire a new one midway through the year.

In the end, the Bills have a three year window to get to the playoffs with their current roster. So, pray they make the playoffs in the next three years. Cause if they don’t god knows when they will after a major rebuild.

Bills Media has Fallen a long way

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As a teenager in the 1990s when it came to quality sports coverage in Western New York, WGR 550’s Chuck Dickerson, who was a former Bills Defensive Line coach until after Super Bowl XXVI, and Art Wander, who was known as “The Tiny Tot of the Kilowatt,” ruled the air. It’s been over a decade since the two were on air at the station together and it’s obvious the station has fallen a long way since then.

In the summer of 2006 I interned at WGR and worked in the news room along with former WNSA and WGR reporter Jeff Morrison and then WGR Program Director Andy Roth. It was well known within WGR’s staff that Roth was a hothead that blew up on anyone that made a mistake. I know learned that personally as Morrison asked me to write an article on the contract extension of Philadelphia Eagles left tackle Jason Peters, who at the time was the Buffalo Bills right tackle and rookie contract ran out.

I was subsequently called in to Roth’s office and ripped for the quality of it. For those at home journalism writing is different than regular English writing, which I wrote the article like.

However, that wasn’t the end of it as while the station was off air Roth ripped me a second time for it, which I will swear on the bible in a court of law as true.

The one thing that I will complement WGR is the quality of coverage by Sabres studio host John Koziel and Sabres beat reporter Paul Hamilton. Hamilton knows his hockey as he played for the University of Iowa and actually tried out for the Miracle on Ice U.S.A. Team hockey team, according to a comment by him that won the Gold Medal during the Winter Olympics in February of 1980.

 

The fact of the matter is the people at WGR don’t know their football. Their life could depend on it and they still wouldn’t. The proof is in an email exchange between me and WGR’s Jeremy White based on his All-22 Review Bills/Titans White wrote this.

“In the next clip ( Bills defensive tackle Marcell) Dareus is lined up over the guard, but taken by the center,” White wrote.  “Dareus has the ability to maintain his blocker, with head up to see the runner.  Running backs occasionally read a block or lane based on the helmet of the defensive lineman.  Watch as Dareus holds left side, and then darts back right to make the play.:

Anyone who has ever played a down of organized football in high school knows that this is completely wrong. On the play the Titans right guard, number 79 pulls to trap Bills defensive tackle Kyle Williams, but for whatever reason the left guard, number 76, didn’t release straight to the linebacker like the play is supposed to and block Williams. The running back recognized this right away and cut to his right immediately.

That leads me to the game against the Cincinatti Bengals.

The one thing that bugged me going into this game was the Bills inability to do anything outside of their first scripted drive. For those who haven’t played, typically the first 15-20 plays are predetermined on what coaches see in their opponent’s game film. The Bills are good at this, but have been terrible adjusting after.

The evidence are in the stats at NFL.com,  prior to the Bengals game the Bills lost games where they passed more and won where they ran more. That was the case against the Bengals as the Bills passed more than ran.

So, what does it mean?

What it means is that Bills head coach Rex Ryan and offensive coordinator Gregg Roman isn’t good when it comes to offense. Also, it means that Roman’s reputations is due to former San Francisco 49ers head coach Jim Harbuagh’s offensive prowess as he was formerly a quarterback in the NFL as Roman was the offensive coordinator under Harbaugh. All one has to do is look at current 49ers starting quarterback Colin Kapernick.

Under Harbaugh and Roman, Kaepernick had a 2:1touchdown to interception ratio, but without them Kaepernick is 1:1 as it’s his first year without the pair. Also, his predecessor Alex Smith, who starts for the Kansas City Chiefs, had a 1:1 touchdown to interception ration until Harbaugh was hired by the 49ers in 2011.

I didn’t like the hire of Ryan from the very start.

In fact, I totally hate it to this day. The Bills, prior to hiring Ryan, had Jim Schwartz as a defensive coordinator that proved he still had it defensively in 2014. Also, they had the ability to hire the former Bills backup quarterback to Jim Kelly in Frank Reich who led the team to the “Greatest Comeback” on January 3rd, 1993.

On most other bad teams, Riech would’ve started, but due to the fact that he was drafted by the Bills in the NFL where there was no free agency, Reich was relegated to backup behind Kelly, but the fans knew they had two special quarterbacks. The reason being in 1989, Reich filled in for an injured Kelly and led the Bills to two straight wins, one of which was against the unbeaten Los Angeles Rams on Monday Night Football.

My first year of watching and studying football was Hall of Fame running back Thurman Thomas rookie year in 1988. That was the year in an overtime win against the Houston Oilers the behind the Bills offensive Hall of Famers trio in Kelly, Thomas and wide receiver Andre Reed, perfected the “No Huddle Offense” which is a staple today and used by current NFL greats like Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning and New England Patriots Tom Brady.

Don’t get me wrong, because the quarterback position is changing according to The Wall Street Journal.

 “Bills general manager Doug Whaley said he had the same results when he asked prospects a question about defenses shifting from a common scheme called “cover 2” to an equally mundane tactic called “cover 3,” the Wall Street Journal wrote.  “Hue Jackson, the offensive coordinator from the Bengals, said he had to dumb down his questions, while Indianapolis Colts offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton said some QBs failed to grasp things as basic as understanding a common play call. “You have to teach these kids the absolute basics,” he said.”

For those who never played, “Cover Whatever” simply refers to the deepest line to the defense, which are typically the safeties. Cover Zero means all the defensive backs are locked up in man coverage, Cover one means that there is one safety covering the deepest parts of the field and Cover two means there are two safeties back deep.

The sad part to me is this is stuff I learned in seventh grade modified football on defense.

In the end, most of the outside of the Buffalo News don’t know their football as some reporters like Mark Gaughan sits with players and break down film with them. This is in spite to the fact that he has an ailing child. I know this personally as in September 2012, while my son was in the last months of his life at Women and Children’s Hospital of Buffalo, I saw Gaughan in the PICU there and talked to him outside of Tim Horton’s in the hospital lobby.

The evidence is in the clamoring of current Bills quarterback Tyrod Taylor who makes plays with his legs. Previous Bills quarterbacks like J.P. Losman and Ryan Fitzpatrick could run as well, but flamed out due to their inability to pass, but that has been lost by the media cause of WGR’s corporate stance, which they took when Dickerson was still there.

That being saying enough criticism while not aggravating the powers to be on the Bills and Buffalo Sabres.

At Cheektowaga Central there is a saying that everyone says entering the locker room after practice that I take to heart today. “Cheektowaga Central Football; a commitment to excellence.” WGR has shown their committed to pleasing corporations and the Bills coaching staff to their and their players egos.

 

Bills lucky in week one of 2015

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Many Buffalo Bills fans will refer to how great the defense was in their week one win over the Indianapolis Colts. The fact of the matter is the Bills defense was lucky they weren’t playing Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning or New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, because if they did it would’ve been a different story.

 

The one thing that stood out throughout the first half of the game was the fact how the Bills cornerbacks were playing five yards off the line of scrimmage.  In the NFL today you cannot do that as great quarterbacks like Manning and Brady will audible all day long to take advantage of it.  A decade ago I was at a game at Ralph Wilson Stadium where I watched then Indianapolis Colts quarterback Manning audible all game long and pick apart the Bills defense that day.

 

On various downs throughout Colts offensive drives I was in disbelief of how quarterback Andrew Luck didn’t take advantage of the cushion Bills cornerbacks were giving him.

 

The Colts first drive of the second half was no different as on the Colts first drive in the second half they went 4-5 on third downs. The only incomplete pass came on 3rd-2 from the Bills two yard line Luck threw an incomplete pass.  However, on fourth down the Colts scored and then completed the two point conversion to make the score 24-8 Bills.

 

The other thing that I can take away from this game is that Bills quarterback Tyrod Taylor has a long ways to go to be a great quarterback in the NFL. On the Bills first drive with the offense facing a 3rd and 5 from their 46 yard line; Taylor scrambled for one yard after feeling immediate pressure. Part of the problem was Bills offensive coordinator Greg Roman’s calling for run plays on first down.

In the second half it was different as the first two 1st-10 for the Bills were passes that were complete. The point being in the NFL you need to mix things up in the NFL in order to succeed.

However, the Bills are basic old school as they rely on their defense to make plays and their offense to control the clock and score the occasional points.

The problem with that is that great teams like the Patriots and the Broncos will exploit the Bills’ weaknesses. They will then rack up the score and make the team look silly.  That’s unless the Bills take their heads out of their rears and do what is right.

In the end, unless the Bills realize that Tayor isn;’t the answer and backup quarterback E.J. Manuel is their best option, the Bills will make it 16 straight years without making the playoffs.

What will happen to Kane

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Chicago Blackhawks forwards, and Buffalo, NY native, Patrick Kane has been embroiled in a rape controversy since August 2nd. Many nation wide are asking what will happen of the case.

The one thing I can state from my own limted experience, is it’s what you can prove in a court of law that matters, which is another case for another time.

The biggest and most glaring example came in the 1990s. Nicole Brown Simpson was murdered and her ex husband and former Buffalo Bills running back O.J., Simpson was the number one suspect. O.J. was charged with the crime, but when it went to trial he was found not guilty, because the prosecution messed up on one piece of evidence.

The main piece of evidence was a bloody glove found behind his Brentwood, CA house. However, when Simpson tried it on at the prosecution’s request it didn’t fit, which led to his attorney Johnny Chocran coining the phrase, “If the glove don’t fit.Then you must acquit.”

Even though many believed O.J, murdered his wife, because he couldn’t be found guilty of a shadow of a doubt, Simpson was found not innocent.

That leads me to the current events with Kane. As far as reports go, neither of the friends of the two have come forwards to hearing anything. That leaves it to be a he said/she said case.

In the end, if no further evidence comes to the police attention then the case will be kicked to the curb by Hamburg, NY police ad Erie Couny District Attorney.

E.J. versus Tyrod: a look at the stats

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Many in Western New York just simply want a franchise quarterback to lead the Buffalo Bills back to the playoffs, which has been over 15 years. In the upcoming 2015 regular season opener, Tyrod Taylor has been named the starter recently, but if you look at just the stats, many would be hard pressed to declare a starter.

fI will admit that my bias is toward quarterback E.J. Manuel. Especially after the articles this season showed that Manuel is one of the best young quarterbacks on first down ever.

However, as much I was rooting for E.J., I had to be neutral as a journalist and I will defer to a quote by Bills General Manager Doug Whaley.

“It’s a production-based business,” Whaley said in The Buffalo News.  “He produced with the twos (Talking about Taylor) so we’re excited for him to get in there Thursday with the ones to see what he can do. Everybody knows what he can do with his feet. But I’m impressed with a couple of his throws.”

The problem is that when you look at the stats objectively their is a different story.

After four preseason games:

Taylor:  24 of 31 for 77.4% passing with 236 yards passing 0 TDs and 0 Int

Manuel: 30 of 20 for 66.7% passing with 358 yards passing 4TDs and 0 Int

When you just look at the stats clearly Manuel is the better of the two. However, it’s when you break down game film the difference is clear.

By athletic standards Taylor is superior between the two. However, in the history of the NFL, it’s pocket presence that wins out, which by the way was the main concern of main Bills media professionals.If you don’t believe me then ask yourself who are the top two quarterbacks in the NFL?

By most peoples’ standards’ it’s Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning and New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady. Neither of which are known for their athleticism.

So, how many Hall of Fame quarterbacks are known for the athleticism?

According to the Pro Football Hall of Fame Modern Era quarterbacks, definitely two in former Denver Broncos quarterback John Elway and Tampa Bay and San Francisco 49ers quarterback Steve Young. After that you could make a case for Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Terry Bradshaw and Bills Jim Kelly. Outside of those you’re talking about former Minnesota Viking Fran Tarketon and Cleveland Brown Otto Graham.

Either which way, athletic quarterbacks are no more than a fad. Pocket passing franchise quarterbacks will be remembered forever.

In the end, I will state that Taylor will falter and E.J. will prove to be the franchise quarterback we have been waiting for as pocket presence will always prevail over athleticism.

The truth of Whaley’s comments

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Pretty much all of Western New York was upset over the fact that the Buffalo Bills cut running back Fred Jackson. All over social media there were videos of children breaking down and crying over their favorite player no longer with their favorite team.

Since then Tim Graham of The Buffalo News reported that two sources told him that Bills General Manager Doug Whaley went “Rogue” when cutting Jackson. However, some have criticized Graham over the validity of the report. So, here is my insight into the whole situation.

As a person with a Master’s of Science in Public Relations, the first thing that they teach is whatever comes up in the press it’s your job to handle it and defuse it. In the National Football League the job starts the minute that the news breaks.

When I was an undergraduate at Buffalo State College, I had the pleasure of hearing three speakers in my sports reporting course, which was taught by The Buffalo News’ Alan Pergament.  Two of the three were  The Buffalo News’ Tim Graham and Mark Gaughan. The third was Buffalo Bills Senior Vice President of Communication Scott Berchtold.

Before I go on I must tell you this. In the world of journalism you typically do what the source asks you. So, what I’m about to tell you is breaking that cardinal rule, but considering all the circumstances lately, I feel it’s well worth it.

It was the summer of 2011 and I just finished last fulltime semester as an undergraduate. I had only two courses to go to complete my Bachelors of Arts in journalism and media production.  One of the course offerings that summer was sports reporting, which to my surprise in the course catalog it said Alan Pergament.

Like many of you reading, my knowledge of Mr. Pergament came from reading The Buffalo New. In the news typically he wrote columns about the media, so the first thing that came into my mind was why he’s teaching a sports reporting course. The answer came within the very first days as he revealed that at Tbe Buffalo News he was first a sports reporter and transferred to his current position at the request of his superiors.

Of course that immediately got my attention and I wondered to myself if he would bring in some of his connections or colleagues to guest speak at my classes.

A few weeks later those questions proved to be right.  The first and third was Graham and Gaughan, who provided great insight to the industry.  However, it was the second speaker in Berchtold that provided to me the most insight into the NFL.

The one thing that I was surprised at was what he during the final stages of the game and just after.

During the final stages of a game he would go up to the media and confirm who they would want to speak to.  This gave him the necessary knowledge and insight to what was come as a longtime veteran of the NFL he knew how the media operated and how to diffuse a situation before the player ever stepped up to the podium.

Once Berchtold confirmed who the media wanted to talk to, he would grab the player. It was in this short period of time from the player’s locker to the podium that he works his magic.

“Every time that I walk with a player up to the podium I always go over things,” Berchtold said. “I would remind him to thank his teammates, the coaching staff and others. I did this in order to get the player to snap and sound off  before they ever reached the podium, because the media asks the same question five different ways to aggravate a player and get what they really are thinking.”

One of the most memorable moments to Berchtold came in the 1990s after a loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers. On one of the key plays there seemed to be pass interference, which Kelly vehemently thought.  Of course Berchtold did his usual spiel to elicit a response from Kelly, who he knew before hand was upset about, and worked as Kelly snapped and replied he knew what he was doing.

However, on that fateful day Berchtold’s tactics failed.

“On my way up to the podium I did my usual thing,” Berchtold said. “I told Jim to thank his offensive line, his coaches and not to say anything about the referees. I knew he would snap, which he did, but that day things didn’t work.”

One of the media’s tactics is to ask the same question in various forms to elicit a emotional response from a player in order to get his true feelings.  With the Bills under Berchtold that is very rare as Berchtold is good at what he does.  However, that day was one of the few to have failed him.

“After I got a response from Jim he went up to the podium,” Berchtold continued. ‘ He answered all the media’s questions, but they came back to the play that there should have been a pass interference.  Eventually, Jim gave me a look he had enough and then snapped and criticized the officials and get a fine from the NFL.”

So why am I saying this? Berchtold is a veteran of the NFL of over 25 years.  His tenure starts before the Bills even went to four straight Superbowls. In other words he is very good at his job.

Why do you think when Graham reported Whaley went “Rogue” that the Bills in the media would show a unified front?

The answer is simply because Berchtold knows how to handle the media and more importantly how to make a scandal slip through the media cycle with very little coming back to the team. The evidence is what Whaley said yesterday.

“Let’s put it this way,” Whaley said. “I gather information from everybody, from the running backs coach to the offensive coordinator to the head coach and the owners. I wouldn’t be in this position – especially with new ownership – I’m going to include them. That’s my boss. We wouldn’t make a decision without them.”

In other words, Whaley gathered information from his roster and came to a decision that the team would be better off with Jackson cut and the money spent elsewhere.

Williams supports Incognito

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The Buffalo Bills started their offseason workout program on Monday and of course the longest tenured Bills is there in defensive tackle Kyle Williams. Like always it’s interesting to hear what he has to say.

Of course Bills reporters asked everyone and anyone about guard Richie Incognito, which of course Williams answered.

“Yeah I saw him,” Williams replied to a question. “And one thing, when we signed him, I was happy. He was a great teammate. Obviously a good player and when he was here he was a fantastic teammate and I wasn’t down when all that junk went down in Miami. So, I tend to base my opinions on my firsthand experiences with people and I had a great time with him as a teammate and I’m glad he’s here.”

The Bills already have a leader on the offensive line in center Eric Wood. According to Rotoworld.com, Wood signed a contract extension prior to the 2013 season, which runs thru 2017 and means that what happened with the Miami Dolphins won’t happen again.

Incognito was asked to take a leadership position with the team, and failed miserably at it.

However, this is a country that believes in second chances. Numerous athletes through the professional level of sports have been given a second chance, and Incognito is no different.

Another factor for Incognito is his age. As of July 5th, Incognito will be 32-years-old. That’s getting up there in age for a professional football player as most players are retired by their mid-30s.

In the end, Incognito will be on his best behavior as a Bills player, but if he doesn’t he will be done in the NFL,