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Buffalo Bills Video Dynasty (Madden)

Started By bhurst99, Mar 10, 2013 10:30 AM

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#21

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Buffalo at Minnesota, Exhibition Game Two

 



#22

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#23

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#24

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#25

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#26

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Bad news. Clowney was looking pretty good in pre-season.



#27

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Aug. 22, 2012

When Bryan Hurst hung up the phone, Ralph Wilson knew immediately Hurst had failed.

"They won't do it," Hurst said. The disappointment was evident on his face.

"That's unfortunate but there's no point in dwelling on it," said Wilson, the Buffalo Bills owner.

The Washington Redskins had been offering their middle linebacker Lorenzo Alexander for trade to teams around the league.

If there had been one thing that had been painfully clear in the Buffalo Bills preseason it was that their existing linebackers couldn't stop the run. They had allowed 142 yards against Minnesota and 125 against Washington.

It was no surprise to Hurst. The Bills couldn't stop the run last year, the run the year before and -- for all Hurst knew -- the past decade.

They needed Lorenzo Alexander. They needed him like a fish needs water.

But the Redskins had rejected the Bills offer of defensive tackle Dwan Edwards.

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"If we can't stop the run .." Hurst didn't need to say more. Every coach from pee-wee football to the NFL knew if you couldn't stop the run you couldn't win.

"This is a passing league now. It's more important we have good defensive backs and great schemes," offered Wilson.

Hurst shook his head. "There's no scheme invented that can make our linebackers look decent."

 "You have to be positive. You're the leader of this team," said Wilson.

"Nick Barnett led our linebackers last game with three tackles. Three tackles! That just isn't going to cut it," said Hurst.

"Why did I hire you if that's the attitude you're going to have?" Wilson glared across the room at Hurst. "You promised me a playoff team when you took this job and less than a month later you're already saying we can't do it."

Hurst knew his criticisms had gone too far. "We're going to make the playoffs, Mr. Wilson. But there's a difference between making the playoffs and having a legitimate shot at the Superbowl."

Hurst sat down across from Wilson.

"You're in charge here," Hurst continued.  "I'm only here to give you advice on personnel decisions. But I'm not going to tell you what you want to hear. I'm here to tell you the truth. Our linebackers are terrible."

"Okay," Wilson relented. "We need to cut six players this week to get down to the roster maximum of 59 players. We'll cut one of the linebackers but I think we should give the rest a chance against Pittsburgh this week."

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Great, thought Hurst. Pittsburgh never shied away from the running game. The Steelers would further expose how inept the Bills linebacking corps were and more importantly, how Wilson needed to listen to Hurst's advice.

Football was about power -- the ability to dictate the game to your opponents on your terms, to push them back into their end zone, to punish their mistakes. Without the power to make personnel decisions Hurst couldn't see how that was going to happen.

Hurst was the one who was going to be pushed with this roster. Opponents were going to march the ball down his throat and he would wear the failure of each loss. He had to have more control, he had to wrestle the roster decisions from this senior citizen.

But that wasn't going to happen today.

"Now let's get to the rest of the cuts," said Wilson.

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#28

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#29

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Pittsburgh at Buffalo, Exhibition Game Three

 



#30

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#31

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#32

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#33

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#34

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#35

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Aug. 29, 2012

Bryan Hurst knew it wouldn't be a good idea to gloat but he couldn't resist.

The Buffalo Bills coach had warned owner Ralph Wilson their linebackers weren't good enough before their game against the Pittsburgh Steelers and sure enough the Steelers ran over them.

"I hate to tell you I told you so. When Jonathan Dwyer has 100 rushing yards against us we've got a problem," said Hurst.

Wilson didn't respond. He looked out his office window overlooking the stadium on this warm, late summer morning.

Maybe he hadn't heard Hurst. You couldn't expect a 92-year old man to hear everything.

"Mr. Wilson?" Hurst asked.

Wilson seemed to be far away. What was he thinking?

"Mr. Wilson, are you okay?" Hurst repeated.

"I heard you," Wilson turned in his chair to face Hurst. "But I don't think I understand you. You're telling me our big problem is our linebackers?"

"That's right," said Hurst.

"We scored 15 points against Pittsburgh and 17 points against Minnesota and you think the problem is our linebackers. I just want to make sure I understand you correctly," said Wilson.

"It's the preseason," Hurst moved uneasily in his chair. "We're giving all three quarterbacks --"

"Stop right there," commanded Wilson. "I've given you a chance to speak. Now it's my turn."

"I don't want to hear it's just the pre-season because that will quickly turn into 'It's only the first four games of the season', or 'We need the first half of the season to work out some kinks.' I've heard all the excuses during my ownership of the team. I don't have enough years left for more excuses."

"At the end of the day, we had 234 yards of offense against Pittsburgh. That's not good enough. That's not going to win any games. That's not going to have those seats," Wilson pointed to the empty seats in the stadium. "Full of cheering fans. The ones who are going to be here will be booing."

"I don't care what you need to do in this final exhibition game in Detroit. Show me your vision for this team. You want to be a running team with Spiller and Jackson, show it this game. You want to pass the ball 40-to-50 times a game, show it this game. Show me why I -- and more importantly the fans -- should believe in you."

Once again Hurst realized his mouth had sunk him into trouble. Why did he have to gloat? Why did he have to open his mouth? He had awoken a sleeping giant.

"I used to be a patient man, Bryan, but you'll have to excuse me if I've run out of patience," said Wilson

Hurst didn't know what to say. In the fourth and final exhibition game, coaches played their starters for only one series. You didn't want to get anyone injured with the regular season only a week away.

That wasn't going to work. He needed to win this game.



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Buffalo at Detroit, Exhibition Week Four



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