State of the Buffalo Bills Address

4 Dec

 

Now, onto the Bills.  The second most frustrating part about being a Bills fan–apart from the decade long playoff drought–is their consistent inconsistency.  Every year they will come out and win Five in a row, only to lose the next eleven; or they jump out to a 1-7 record then win 8 useless games in a row.  When their offense is on fire, their defense is drenched in fire retardant foam and vice versa.

The last two weeks have shown the defense beginning to play up to their potential.  Mario Williams wrist surgery seems to have legitimately improved his play and aggressiveness as he has racked up 9.5 sacks on the season to go along with a forced fumble and 34 tackles. Considering Dave Wannstedt avoids blitzing like a gypsy told him it would lead to his demise, these are good numbers for Mario.  Kyle Williams remains an unheralded  beast in the middle with 5 sacks and at least one explosive tackle-for-loss per game.  Our linebackers remain a weakness, besides Barnett who is, in fact, a tackling addict.  Our safety play is solid and you all already know my feelings toward Stephon Gilmore…the other corner is a massive issue I see the Bills solving in Free Agency.

The offense is the real crap shoot every week.  Fitzpatrick can either be an efficient and accurate game-manager, or a hell-spawn nightmare determined to crush the spirits of Western New York.  He has 20 touchdowns and 12 interceptions–stats that would not typically warrant harsh criticism.  The problem with his turn-overs is they seem to happen only in the most crucial points in a game.  No one is more apt to throw an interception on a potential game winning drive than Ryan Fitzpatrick.  Our receivers are not a huge help to the Harvard boy either.  Stevie is an elite receiver and an extremely dependable receiver, but he isn’t a game changer like Marshall, Calvin Johnson, Fitzgerald or even Hartline and Torrey Smith.  He lacks the big-time height and butt-puckering speed.  And none of the other receivers are filling in that role either.  I see the Bills choosing a receiver high in the draft in 2013…right after a QB project.

The running game fills my heart with glee and the offensive line has performed adequately in the pass and phenomenal in the run.  All with few to none well known names, and the usual stream of injuries that plague every team’s trench warriors. Cordy Glenn is going to be a star left tackle and our guards are tough to criticize, mainly because I don’t pay close enough attention to the O-line during games.  Spiller is our future and Freddie will be the best relief back in the league if we keep him on the roster…which seems likely.

So what does the future hold?  Stuff, mostly.  And for the Bills, I believe that stuff involves a disappointing 2012-2013 season ending in an 8-8 record.  I see Wannstedt being fired and a general emphasis being placed to find linebackers capable of pass coverage and a left corner in the offseason.  Fitzpatrick will remain and probably start next season with whatever young, up-and-comer learning and gaining experience from the sidelines.  The direction of the team will shift into a Baltimore Ravens-esque plan where a strong defense and unstoppable running game will be the primary tools used to achieve victory. Next season is the playoffs.  Did I say that last year, and the year before?  Maybe.  Will I say it again if Im wrong next year? Yes.

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