Tuesday, December 18, 2012


Tough Times for the Bills

                                                   Moffitt, McQuistan and Giacomini

The Seattle Seahawks stormed out of the gate last Sunday, and put the first fourteen points on the board. The Buffalo Bills found themselves trying to catch up yet again, with little success. Final score? Seahawks 50 Bills 17.


The Seahawks were led by their remarkable young rookie quarterback, Russell Wilson. He scampered for three touchdowns in the first half, establishing a team record in the process. He ran nine times for 92 yards, and completed 14 passes on 23 attempts. Drafted in the third round out of Wisconsin, Wilson is now ranked seventh in the NFL with a 94.9 passer rating.


Marshawn Lynch also aided the Seahawk cause by adding 113 yards on 13 carries. Lynch entered the game with a career-high 1 266 yards on 261 carries, ranked sixth in the NFL.


Remarkably, neither Wilson nor Lynch stands six feet tall. In the game today, most quarterbacks and backup throwers are well over six feet. After all, they need to hit receivers with accurate passes, picking out their targets downfield. All the while, they must be able to see over the outstretched arms of thundering defensive linemen who often stand 6’ 6” and taller.


The Bills’ Kraig Urbik is one of those typical giants. An offensive guard, he stands at five inches over six feet and tips the scale at 325. He spends his weekend afternoons making holes for running backs, and protecting his QB.

                                                                    Kraig Urbik

C. J. Spiller had another good game for the Bills, picking up 103 yards on 17 carries. His quarterback, Ryan Fitzpatrick completed 21 passes for more than 200 yards. The statistics are similar to those stacked up by the Hawks. The Bills had an edge in the time that they possessed the ball. One look at the scoreboard tells you that something was amiss for the Bills.


They turned the ball over far too many times. They could not find the end zone when opportunity knocked. They shot themselves in the foot with untimely penalties. These are the same criticisms made about all teams that do not make the playoffs. It has been thirteen years for the Bills. They will regroup in the spring following their final two games.


Naturally the game began with plenty of hoopla. Fireworks and guns roaring while the players took the field. Plenty to entertain the near capacity crowd. Many were there to catch a glimpse of the high-priced half time act: PSY.


I threw a photo I took of the remarkable South Korean rapper yesterday on Face Book. Without a lie, someone wrote back; “Who is that?” PSY has appeared on every American talk show that exists. There is a clip on You Tube of PSY teaching Brittany Spears how to dance on the Ellen Degeneres Show. Does it get any better?

                                                          PSY-Taking the Stage

PSY was flanked by his entourage as he took centre stage. The playing field was lined with the Buffalo cheerleaders, and the Junior Jills, as well as hundreds of fans who had won a contest to dance with the international phenom. Four minutes later, following the “Gangnam Style” performance, PSY disappeared into the netherworld of the Rogers Centre, leaving the crowd buzzing. I think I saw several hundred dollar bills sticking out of his pockets as he left the field.

                                             PSY-After the Concert (Check the Pockets!)
The Bills have now lost four regular season games in Toronto, with one win to their credit. Only die-hard fans make the trip from Buffalo. They know that they have to brave the traffic on the QEW. There is always a weather factor to contend with, and the possibility of a hassle at the border.


I had the good fortune to sit with Mike McCarthy, now scouting for the Montreal Alouettes. Following his playing days at Southwestern College in Kansas, McCarthy had a free agent tryout with the Cowboys. He then began an extensive career on the sidelines, coaching and managing in the CFL, the NFL, and the USFL. He joined the Hamilton Tiger Cats in 1985, and has worked for the Argos, and the Ottawa Rough Riders. That should mean he knows the good restaurants in the CFL East!

                                                           With Mike McCarthy  
He has gained a wealth of knowledge from his days in the game, working with the likes of Barry Switzer and George Allen. I truly appreciated his insights from the game.


I know that you would agree with me that it is now the time to drop the puck. The winters are far too long in this country without the NHL.


December 18, 2012  




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