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Stevie Johnson wants Ryan Fitzpatrick calling plays over Chan Gailey

The Buffalo Bills fell to the Indianapolis Colts 20-13 on Sunday for their fourth loss in five games, and wide receiver Stevie Johnson wants some changes.

Johnson said after the game that he would like to see quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick begin calling more plays instead of head coach Chan Gailey.

“How I see it, I think we need to let our quarterback call these plays,” Johnson said, per The Buffalo News. “He’s out there on the field. He sees the adjustments that need to be done. I think we just need to let him make adjustments on the go. I think that’s the way we can move the ball better.

“He did it a little bit in the game, and we moved the ball. … He was hitting C.J. [Spiller], getting his run plays, doing the pass plays, and I just think we should do it more often.”

The Buffalo News points out that a fourth-quarter touchdown pass from Fitzpatrick to Johnson ended a seven-quarter touchdown drought. Johnson credited Fitzpatrick for that touchdown drive.

“It was all Fitz,” Johnson said. “Fitz made the adjustments, the audibles, and I think that led to our success, going down the field, making those throws. So I just think we should do a little bit more of that.”

Fitzpatrick went 17-of-33 for 180 yards, a touchdown, and an interception in the loss. Johnson had six catches for a season high 106 yards, including a career-long 63-yard gain.

Buffalo entered the game 17th in the league with 23 points per game. The running game entered Week 12 eighth in the NFL with 140.8 yards per game, but the passing game has dropped off to 23rd. Maybe Gailey should listen to Johnson and consider allowing Fitzpatrick more freedom on the field. At 4-7, it’s not like they have a whole lot more to lose, and if they don’t improve, it won’t be too long before Gailey is fired.

Between these comments and what Johnson said about Gailey two weeks ago, it’s obvious he’s dissatisfied.

Helmet smack to Around the League
Photo credit: Mark J. Rebilas-US PRESSWIRE

Stevie Johnson calls out Chan Gailey for praising the Bills for their effort

The optimist would look at the Buffalo Bills’ 37-31 loss to the New England Patriots on Sunday and praise them for hanging tough on the road with one of the better teams in the AFC. The pessimist sees it as a loss that dropped the Bills to 3-6 on the season and may have erased any hope they had of reaching the postseason. From the sound of it, Buffalo head coach Chan Gailey is the optimist and Stevie Johnson is the pessimist.

“Every week (Gailey is) saying that we have the effort … which is obvious,” Johnson said Tuesday morning on NFL AM, via Around the League. “At this point you can’t be a team that’s so-called turning the corner if you’re not winning games. We still have more work to do. We still have to learn how to finish these games.”

Buffalo trailed by only three points at one point in the fourth quarter. Like many other teams have done this season, Ryan Fitzpatrick and company were able to carve up the Patriots’ porous defense and find a way to stay in the game. However, costly turnovers and an inability to stop New England’s offensive attack ultimately buried the Bills.

“We just need to go to our bread and butter when we need to,” Johnson continued. “At that moment going against the New England Patriots, you know they’re going to go to (Rob) Gronkowski or Wes Welker. We have many weapons, C.J. (Spiller), me, Donald (Jones) and Scott Chandler. The four of us should have the opportunity at the end of that game.”

Hanging around and not finishing games just isn’t cutting it for the Bills anymore. Last season, they were one of the hottest teams in the NFL to start the year before injuries and poor play derailed them. Despite signing Mario Williams, who seems to enjoy boos and is hearing plenty of them, Buffalo’s defense has been horrendous. It’s hard to blame Johnson for not taking any positives out of Sunday’s loss.

Photo credit: Mark J. Rebilas-US PRESSWIRE

Chan Gailey says the Bills believe they can win the AFC East…again

The Buffalo Bills are perennial bottom-dwellers in the AFC East. For the past four seasons, they have finished dead last. The last time they won the division was in 1995, and they have finished second just three times since then. If nothing else, Buffalo is overdo. Chan Gailey can see that changing when the 2012 season gets underway.

“I think we have a legitimate chance to win the division,” Gailey said Tuesday according to the Bills official Twitter account (via Pro Football Talk). “We beat New England last year, went to New York and played good. Played bad against Miami (but) we match up well in the division.

“Confidence for our team comes from the steps we have to take. Every step builds it. We were able to get over the hump against New England. This team believes it can win the division.”

There’s a difference between confidence and a guarantee, and Gailey’s stance represents the former. However, the Bills are a team that should be focusing on baby steps. Prior to last season, Gailey said the Bills expected to go undefeated. By the end of the season he was using the word “pitiful” to describe his team. Buffalo took care of business by signing Stevie Johnson to an extension which should hold its solid offense together, but plenty of work remains. There’s no reason to believe the Patriots won’t get stronger this offseason, and there’s also the threat of Miami signing Peyton Manning. Expect more of the same from the Bills, at least for the immediate future.

Chan Gailey Uses the Word ‘Pitiful’ to Describe the Bills

Through the first five weeks of the NFL season, we found ourselves wondering if it would really be possible for teams like the Bills, Lions, and 49ers to all make the playoffs. Since then San Francisco has been cruising to a No. 1 seed, the Lions have stumbled but still have a chance, and the Bills have taken the all-important role of 2011′s pretender.

Coming out of the gate, Ryan Fitzpatrick and Fred Jackson surprised the league with their play-making ability.  The Bills scored 34 or more points in each of their first three games, and while their defense looked like it could be an issue, their offense looked like one of the best in the NFL.  On Sunday, Buffalo dropped its third straight game by way of a 35-8 shellacking in Miami.  They have been outscored 106-26 in the three losses.

“I don’t know if I’ve ever been through that before, ever,” head coach Chan Gailey said according to Pro Football Talk. “When you’re that bad, you’re having a pitiful day.”

Make that two straight pitiful weeks, as the Cowboys beat the Bills 44-7 a week ago.  It’s safe to assume Gailey’s dreams of an undefeated season and a Super Bowl ring have been shattered.

“We’re baffled as to what has happened,” Ryan Fitzpatrick said. “For the past three weeks, it has not been fun to play, and I’m sure it has not been fun to watch.”

We’re not baffled.  Simply put, the Bills are no longer surprising teams.  When you know that your opponent has a dangerous offense it becomes easier to prepare for.  Buffalo’s defense has not been good all year and now teams are able to exploit it right out of the gate, leaving their offense to play catch-up for three quarters.  Fitzpartrick and company are effective, but the Bills’ defense has asked them to do too much all season long.

Chan Gailey: Bills Expect to Go Undefeated and Make Playoffs

We understand a fresh slate is a chance for renewed confidence. The beginning of a new season erases everything that happened the season before. That is a good thing for teams like the Buffalo Bills, but how high should a team set its expectations following a 4-12 season?  For Chan Gailey, the sky is the limit.

Despite a horrendous 2010 season and an offseason that did not bring any significant improvements, the Bills head coach said he is expecting big — check that: Huge — things from his squad in 2011.

“I expect it,” Gailey told WGR 550 when asked if the Bills could make the playoffs. “I think our players expect it. If you don’t expect it, something’s wrong with you. If you say I want to be a little better than last year, you ought to get out, that’s wrong. I expect to win every one of them, I expect to be undefeated, that’s the way I’ve always been and that’s the way I’ll always be.”

Gailey knows his team is not going 16-0, just like Rex Grossman knows the Redskins should probably be thinking wildcard if they hope to make the playoffs.  That being said, he’s right about expecting to win every game.  If you handed a Bills player a schedule and had them go through it with you, do you think they would start pointing out games they expect to lose?  Even Randy Moss wouldn’t be that disgruntled.