By BBD Editor Mike Watkins
While the Bills were on bye there were five keys that they needed to refocus on accomplishing if they hope to turn around the second half of the season. While back to back games away at New England and Houston certainly don’t look bright for our future, we are still technically in the race and at this point that’s all we can ask for.
1. It all starts and ends here: Again we can talk about coaching and defense all we want but until the QB play improves it really won’t mean much. This is a QB driven league and the turnovers, accuracy issues, and short drives are killing the Bills right now. Fitzpatrick really needs to take the bye week to get him back on track by figuring out what he was doing the first 4 games of the 2011 season and get back to it as fast as he can. He does that and everything else will start to fall into place
2. Dont be that guy: Mario Williams has been a letdown no one is debating that. At some point though personal pride has to take over for the myriad of excuses he has had. Fans and coaches a like grow tired of the constant excuses, no one wants to hear the excuses they want to hear what you’re going to do to fix the problem not why there is a problem. Don’t be that guy in a long line of guys that signed a massive Free Agent deal and then mailed it in. His play needs to be dramatically improved if the defense is going to take a step forward
3. The definition of insanity is…: The coaching on this team is reaching absurd levels. You cannot keep doing the same thing and expecting different results. With Chan it’s the obsession with the pass especially late in games. Apparently he has a differing opinion as to how bad Fitzpatrick is struggling. When you have the ground game the Bills have with the caliber of RB’s the Bills have there is no excuse what so ever not to be running the ball late in games. With Wannstedt, when it’s clear as day that your front 4 is not creating enough pressure you have to blitz or try something else to generate that pressure. You cannot allow a QB in this league to sit there all game and tear you apart. Both these coaches have to do some serious revaluating of how they are calling games and the in game adjustments they are failing to make
4. E is for Effort: The overall effort as mentioned by some of the players after the Titans loss has been lackluster at best. Improving this is not going to be easy especially with two games on the horizon that could be blowout losses for the Bills. Back to back big losses in my opinion will send this team into a tailspin that it will never come out of for the rest of the year. The problem will compound itself if when the players do come back they come back to a coaching staff that has little to no change in their game plans. It’s hard to buy into something that you don’t think is working and compound it with major losses. The locker room will be lost quickly for a lame duck coach with that equation. The game against the Texans will be huge and if the Bills don’t even put up a fight down there it will not be a good sign
5. Line up and fire: One thing I want to see more of from the DL is less just lining up and going and far more moving around and stunting. The Bills barely stunt at all and when they do its sloppy at best because they barely do it. One easy fix to me would be to start moving stunting a lot more than the Bills have been. If the opposing OL knows what’s coming nearly every snap it makes it a lot easier to defend. When you stunt you are forcing OL to make quick unexpected decisions and that can lead to game changing mistakes. Another thing I want to see more of is the moving around of players. Move Mario from left to right end, on third downs kick him insides with Williams and have K.Moore at DE, and have Carrington take some snaps at DE on first down to help with the run. Little adjustments like this add up and can get the ball rolling in the right direction