As for the game itself, remember how I wrote that last week's loss to the Browns made clear the Bills' deficiencies? This game took those deficiencies and tattooed them to Marv Levy's forehead. I hope he looks in the mirror.
:: Kevin Everett's return to Buffalo.
:: Jason Peters. He must be good, for his departure from the game due to injury to lead to the complete failure of the Bills' offense to do anything of note from that point on.
:: Trent Edwards, again. A really good first quarter followed by three quarters of ineffectiveness, with a dash of desperation-borne self-immolation at the end, combines for a solid "Meh". I still think he's got a lot of upside, but he's clearly not there yet.
:: Eli Manning. This was the first time I've really watched him play, and he was not that impressive at all. I never liked him much after his petulant "I don't wanna play in San Diego!" temper tantrum when he was drafted, and as it stands, the Chargers are certainly enjoying the last laugh on that score.
:: The Bills' receivers, yet again. They're too small, and nobody seems able to catch anything that's not thrown right on the numbers. Sometimes in the NFL you have to be able to go up and get a pass or stretch out to snag one; none of these guys seems able to do that.
:: Run defense. The Bills were awful up front. I've been trying to figure out lately what the franchise's single biggest mistake of the last five years has been, and right now, I'm leaning strongly toward the decision that Pat Williams was washed up and let go to Minnesota, where he's only played at a Pro Bowl level. I've been watching teams with big, competent offensive lines and powerful running backs throw the Bills' small-and-quick defensive linemen around like rag dolls pretty much for the entire duration of this blog's existence. Please, Mr. Levy, get a big run stuffer!
:: Offensive line. I say it every week: they don't blow anyone off the line, so the Bills' running game consists of the occasional brilliant run offset by four or five rushes for less than a yard. Marshawn Lynch is a terrific talent, but the line still isn't very good. Please, Mr. Levy, get a big center who can give the line some push up the middle!
:: The announcers. One exchange stood out, when they were discussing the fact that the Giants' home finale next week is versus the New England Victor Von Dooms*. One of these two intoned solemnly that "It's not the responsibility of the Giants to ensure that the Von Dooms do not finish the season undefeated. It's their responsibility to make sure they're healthy for the playoffs." Since the Giants' playoff position is already set -- they're the fifth seed, no matter what happens next week -- the game is meaningless, so this guy's saying that they shouldn't go all-out to beat the Von Dooms, and maybe even rest some starters. And yet, is anyone suggesting that the Von Dooms rest their starters in that same game? Is anyone saying that they should take a loss and end 15-1 in order to remain healthy for the playoffs?
If the Von Doom's are to be expected to play the game for real in hopes of setting the historic 16-0 record, then the Giants are equally to be expected to suit up to stop them. Nobody thinks for one second that Beelzebub Belichick is going to bench
Brady Satan to keep him healthy; why should the Giants roll over?
Put it this way: the third batter in the ninth inning against a pitcher who's gunning for a perfect game still has an obligation to try to get on base.
:: Dolphins linebacker Joey Porter. I caught one play of the Dolphins' game against the Von Doom's, and Porter recorded a sack of
Brady Satan. And then Porter started doing that muscle-flexing strut thing that guys like to do when they record sacks. Ummm, Joey? Your team is 1-13 going into this game. You don't get to dance for recording a sack in the first quarter. Putz.
:: Commenters on the Buffalo News's BillBoard blog, as evidenced in yesterday's game thread. Yeesh, these are fans? I especially love the ones who think that the Bills "quit" in yesterday's game. I didn't see the team "quit". I saw the team play hard and get whipped by a team that was well-equipped to whip them. Or the guy who insists that Trent Edwards is "worse than the last guy" and "another soft California quarterback". What twaddle.
Next week: the Bills travel to Philly to play the Eagles. And Michael Strahan is our only hope. Remember, Michael: even
Brady Satan's ACL isn't made of steel!
* The Wikipedia page for Victor Von Doom has this "Wiki complaint" at the top of the page: "This comics-related article or section describes an element of the series in a primarily in-universe style. Please rewrite this article to explain the fiction more clearly and provide non-fictional perspective." What a stupid complaint. Someone at Wikipedia needs to remove the large piece of elongated wood from their colon. Who the hell needs "non-fictional perspective" about a fictional supervillain?!