The Buffalo Bills: What Went Right?
Something good must have happened this year, right? Actually, surprisingly little, but let’s review anyway. Offense: Tackle Jason Peters went from an undrafted free agent, to a tight end on the practice squad, to the starting right tackle. He is by far the Bills most gifted lineman and has tremendous athletic ability. Can he play left tackle? I think we will find out, as it will be easier to sign a right tackle rather than a left tackle in free agency. He will be the Bills best lineman next year, and I would think the Bills will be actively trying to get him a long-term deal. Wide receiver Lee Evans avoided the sophomore slump and scored seven TD’s. Roscoe Parrish overcame a broken wrist (we think) and got valuable playing time in the last three weeks. Receiver is not a position of concern for the Bills next year. Yep, that’s about it for the offense. Defense: Turns out LB Angelo Crowell can play. After Takeo Spikes went down in week three, Crowell filled in and ended up second on the team in tackles, trailing only London Fletcher. If Spikes come back healthy next year (a big if, but if anyone can do it…) perhaps Crowell can replace the very mediocre Jeff Posey. London Fletcher was a madman, leading the team with 158 total tackles. A year ago we were thinking he was a problem, this year he was a leader. CB Terrence McGee is solid, and signed long-term. DE Aaron Schobel had another season of quiet effectiveness, leading the team with 12 sacks. That’s not a misprint. He needs help on the other end or up the middle, however. Some of our youngsters, like safeties Rashad Baker and Jim Leonhard were very pleasant surprises, and may make either Lawyer Milloy or Troy Vincent expendable to save some cap space. Special Teams: How about everybody? Despite the TD return in the finale, they were the best in the league this year, in all facets. By the way, I love how all the wrapup shows said that special teams cost them a victory yesterday. Like Holcomb’s four interceptions don’t count? Brian Moorman is the best punter in the league, and Terrence McGee is the best return man. The second best may well be Roscoe Parrish. Rian Lindell made 82.9% of his kicks this year and ranked fourth in the league in field goals made. He went three for three from beyond 50 yards, which was supposedly the knock against him. I know Buffalo fans never let facts get in the way of their feelings, but Lindell was a top-five kicker in the league this year and ranks as the most accurate kicker in Bills history. Not a long list, is it? Feel free to submit your own as I’m sure I missed something.