How to improve your heath in just one week!
Good news Buffalo Bills fans….that high blood pressure your doctor’s been telling you to monitor, the random Monday morning depression you’ve been recently experiencing and the sick to your stomach feeling you get around 3:40pm on Sunday afternoon when it seems like the Bills can’t possibly lose the game (but you’ve learned to know better), will all go away this weekend as Buffalo is on a bye.
At this point last year, the Bills were going into the bye week with a 4-2 record and things were looking pretty darn good. They had beat New England and Philadelphia, they signed their quarterback of the future, Ryan Fitzpatrick and Running Back Fred Jackson was being mentioned as a potential MVP candidate after 6 strong games to start the season. We all know what happened next as Buffalo lost 8 out of the last 10 games, Fitzpatrick showed his true colors and Jackson went on IR for the remainder of the season.
At least this season that false hope is gone. What you see is what you get. I’m an optimist. Every season I want to believe the Bills will be better, but they always prove me wrong.
I don’t even know where to begin?
This season with the revamped defensive line, their draft picks, off-season signings and a move to the 4-3 scheme, it seemed like Buffalo was really focusing on getting better on the defensive side of the ball.
However, through seven games this season, the defense has been terrible. The line has played poorly, the linebackers are clearly a liability and the secondary is awful.
The Bills don’t just own the title of the worst defense in the AFC anymore; they now have the worst defense in the NFL! They are dead last against the run, 20th against the pass, and have given up the second most points in football.
It’s not due to a lack of talent. We know Mario Williams can play the game. Kyle Williams has been to the Pro Bowl and Marcel Dareus lead the team in sacks last year. Nick Barnett has shown he can play the position and Jarius Byrd is one of the best young safeties in the league. So what’s the problem?
Every week it seems like the same lip service in the postgame interviews. “We didn’t execute”, “We’ll have to review the film and make adjustments”…blah…blah…blah!
There is much blame to go around….and it’s not just on the defensive side. The offense isn’t great either and the play calling has been mind-numbingly bad! Two games this season could have been won this season with better play calling. I’m not qualified to be an NFL coach, but I can tell you, don’t throw a trick play pass with your 5th string wide receiver toward the end of the game when you have a chance to win the game. In fact, don’t throw a pass at all toward the end of the game when you have the lead. It’s okay to punt the ball away (even if the punter that you replaced Brian Moorman with can only punt the ball 20 yards down the field). Don’t be afraid to go for a 2-point conversion when you’re down by two points. Kick a field goal every once in a while when you’re in range. When a ball hits you square in the numbers for an easy interception, catch the damn ball!
What needs to change? Dave Wannstedt needs to go. Wannstedt has been terrible at making in-game adjustments. He’s also failed to help generate a pass rush when the front four has struggled. He has talented players, but isn’t producing results. Two, Chan Gailey needs to give up play calling. He has called some really bad plays at really bad times (as mentioned above). And finally, the Bills need to play harder on both sides of the ball. You can’t only blame play calling and coaching….it really comes down to players making plays. Here’s another thought….if you can’t improve the team, maybe the solution is to build a $1.4 billion stadium on the harbor in downtown buffalo? No?
Many fans are trying to remain positive and think the Bills can turn things around…even with upcoming games against Houston and New England. I think they may actually play well against Houston coming off the bye. They will lose to New England and may win a few more games here and there….but they are losing the important division games, which will matter if the AFC remains tight.
I am an optimist, but I’m not a fool….there’s always next season.
Week 8 NFL Football Picks
I went 9-4 for the week …mostly due to the fact that I went 0-3 with my upset picks (for the record all those games were close). Record: Overall (65-36), Upsets (10-9), Locks (8-2). Picking this week was tough. There will be a ton of close games that could go either way.
Game of the Week
Washington at Pittsburgh | Winner: Washington
Upsets of the Week:
Tampa Bay at Minnesota | Winner: Tampa Bay
San Diego at Cleveland | Winner: Cleveland
Atlanta at Philadelphia | Winner: Philadelphia
Indianapolis at Tennessee | Winner: Indianapolis
Locks of the Week:
Jacksonville at Green Bay | Winner: Green Bay
Carolina at Chicago | Winner: Chicago
Miami at NY Jets | Winner: NY Jets
Seattle at Detroit | Winner: Detroit
New England at St. Louis | Winner: New England
Oakland at Kansas City | Winner: Oakland
NY Giants at Dallas | Winner: Giants
San Francisco at Arizona | Winner: San Francisco
New Orleans at Denver | Winner: Denver