I know it’s only March, but it looks as if the Bills may have a tentative plan in finding a quarterback. NFL.com is reporting that the Bills (along with the Seahawks) want to have a private workout with Tim Tebow after his pro day on March 17th. Look, I wrote a long blog over a month ago that I wasn’t exactly thrilled about Tim Tebow coming to Buffalo. I think he has too many throwing issues, plus working in the shotgun exclusively at Florida worries me. However, my disdain towards the possibility of Trent Edwards starting in 2010 has soften my stance. Hell, at this juncture, I’d take JP Losman back over Captain Checkdown.
Now, from a marketing stand point, it wouldn’t shock me if the Bills drafted Tebow in the 2nd or 3rd round. I didn’t think much of Tebow’s popularity after his college career ended. However, after seeing all the hoopla over him changing his throwing motion and being surrounded by 100’s of reporters at the NFL Combine, I knew that Tebow’s fame had become a monster. Hell, he may be the reason the NFL decided to go prime time for the 2nd and 3rd rounds of the Draft. If the Bills drafted him, ESPN would be all over this story from mini-camp to the regular season. We’d get Erin Andrews camping out at One Bills Drive. College football fans from throughout the land who’ve adored Tebow would tune into games. Not to mention, you can probably put him up there as the #1 selling jersey for the Bills.
Mark my words, the national hoopla would be a lot BIGGER if Tebow was drafted by the Bills than T.O. coming to Buffalo. Plus, there’s already a strong support for Tebow to play from fans and members of the media in Buffalo. Lets not forget he has the backing of Jim Kelly, which is like being blessed by the pope (eye roll). I’m not saying that I believe in Tebow. Quite honestly, I don’t. But from a marketing stand point in selling merchandise, luxury boxes, and team endorsements. Tebow would be Buffalo Salesman of the Year.
As for what I would do, I think if Tebow is sitting in the 3rd round of the NFL Draft and does well in his private workouts…I…I….I still can’t do it. I wrote that the Bills have to rebuild this franchise and get away from the methods they have been using over the last 10 years. Enough with these gimmicks and being unconventional. Now, if the Bills totally agree that Tebow is a franchise quarterback, then go for it. However, we all can’t ignore the Bills past of conjuring up “Fred Flintstone like get rich quick schemes” for bringing in players just for name recognition. I just don’t want it to be a situation where the Bills scouts aren’t sure about his playing skills and then a bunch of the marketing suits start chirping in about Tebow’s endorsements and popularity.
There was a rumor that made its way across the web this weekend about the Bills bringing in Joey Porter for a workout on Tuesday. The rumor was reported by Buffalorumblings.com, but soon after was retracted. Anyways, we can still talk about it because it would make total sense for the Bills to sign Porter. I know, I’ve been saying to get younger, but this 3-4 experiment has me worried.
Look, there’s no way Chris Kelsay or Aaron Schobel should be allowed to play outside linebacker for this team or any other. The team needs to bring in someone who knows how to be the quarterback of a 3-4 defense. Porter is that guy. He’s been in the 3-4 for the majority of his career and has thrived in it. I know some may think he’s washed up, but he did have 26.5 sacks over the last two years. Yes, it should be noted that he only had 9 sacks in 14 games last year, but even that sack total would have counted for 2nd most by a Bills player.
Now, I know what some people are thinking: “Porter is an old-washed up, arrogant punk who wouldn’t mesh with Buffalo’s blue-collar work ethic.” Yes, Porter is in the twilight of his career. However, if Aaron Maybin is suppose to thrive the most in a 3-4 defense, it would be nice if he could have an all-pro tutoring him at a position he’s never played at before.
As for Porter’s personality issues, you know how I feel about spitfires. I love them! You need guys with attitude in professional sports. If there’s one thing I was hoping that Terrell Owens could bring to the Bills last season, it was someone who would hold the team’s feet to the fire if they played poorly. Unfortunately, T.O. didn’t care about setting a precedent with the team because he was more interested in where he would end up playing in 2010 and didn’t want to jeopardize that (You could probably put in cereal, modeling and a reality show in activities that peaked his interest more so than playing for the Bills).
Something tells me that Porter doesn’t give a crap about reality shows and being a model. He’s the type of player that’s going to say what’s on his mind and talk trash to the opposition. That’s something the Bills haven’t had in a long time. In the beginning of free agency, I wanted the Bills to make a run at Larry Foote to help with the 3-4 defense. Now, I wouldn’t mind substituting Porter for that spot
**Update: Adam Schefter is now reporting that the Bills have contacted Porter**
I now kind of regret discovering Donte Whitner’s photo change on his twitter page. All day Sunday, Whitner decided to address every single solitary question regarding his future. I swear, it most have reached 100 answers in like two hours. Whitner addressed playing everywhere; from Cleveland to Washington. Hell, I think he even addressed playing with Lebron James. For my twitter page’s sake, please let the Whitner decision play out quickly. BTW, for all those fans in Cleveland and DC who are interested in Whitner: HE’S OVERRATED! So…layoff the tweets. I’d like to get breaking news of the Bills signing more Ex-Chiefs than reading tweets from Whitner’s fan club.
I’m not exactly going to say “what a relief” when it comes to the Sabres recent two game winning streak. But hey…two points are two points, and you can’t award style points in the NHL. It’s funny though, I don’t know what’s more shocking, the Sabres giving up a 13-point division lead to the Senators or the team somehow finding its way back into sole position of first place? It’s not exactly breaking news to figure out what’s right or wrong with the Sabres. But in case you’re too wrapped up in Ryan Miller being on the Today Show, here are some reasons to love and hate the Sabres.
Showing the Love
1) It doesn’t take a genius to figure out what’s the reason for the Sabres success. It all starts with The NHL’s next top star, Ryan Miller. Honestly, I don’t know what to write about the guy that hasn’t already been written. He’s the real deal and is proving that the Olympics haven’t effected his recent play. You can tell he’s playing with the most confidence in his career and he should be. Think about this, including the Olympics and the four games after the break; Miller has allowed 14 goals in his last 10 games. Daaaaaam. I don’t care if it’s against the Swiss or the Rochester Americans, that’s a sick stat line. The guy’s the MVP of the team and is their biggest star attraction since Dominik Hasek.
2) Even though the Sabres let in the game tying goal on the power play against the Rangers, they are still amongst the lead leaders in penalty killing (Ranking 4th as of today). I don’t know how much that’s going to help in the playoffs. As it seems more often than not, referees elect to swallow their whistles. But it’s always good to see what makes Lindy Ruff one of the best defensive minded coaches in hockey. His penalty killing units have always been..well..killer. Over the last 10 years the average Sabres PK unit has ranked 9th in the NHL. From Stu Barnes to Mike Grier to Paul Gaustad, it doesn’t matter who Ruff puts out there because he teaches his players how to play defense on the penalty kill (Power Play? We will get to that in a bit).
Showing the hate:
1) Hate doesn’t describe my attitude towards the top 6 forwards of this team. Hell, they aren’t even considered top 6 in my book…more like 4 through 10. To me, saying top 6 forwards is just a cheap, inexpensive way to say that our team has depth. They have depth alright, as in there should be a line of players in the press box. Tell me if you haven’t heard this one before? “Where was Jason Pominville last night” or “Thomas Vanek should have had a hat trick.” It’s either the guys show up and can’t put the puck in the back of the net or their still on Olympic Break…or summer break for that matter. All you had to do was look at Derek Roy’s scoring chance in OT against the Rangers. He was fed a great pass in front of Lundqvist and fired the backhand about three feet wide (almost taking out the stupid “Subway eat fresh” logo). That’s the epitome of the Sabres offense this season…they just can’t finish.
I know it’s taboo to mention Chris Drury or Daniel Briere (Eye roll, I know), but one of these guys needs to look in the mirror and say, “Hey, I’m going to carry this team on my back tonight. I’m NOT going to look for someone else to make a play. Fu$% the top 6 forwards, because I’m the top forward on this team?!” When someone can do that, then I’ll shut-up about the co-captains.
2) Man, for the Sabres sake, they better hope that the referees in the playoffs decide to swallow their whistles, because the power play has been a disaster. Is it too much to ask for the team to just set-up the power play? Hell, it’s becoming a moral victory if the team can get 3 passes off in a row inside the offensive zone. Honestly, maybe the Sabres should consider putting Vanek on the point. Seriously, they’ve tried everything else and nothing seems to work.
Look, I don’t get up every day and think of ways to crap on the Sabres. There are just times that I wonder what hockey team is going to show up on a nightly basis. Plus, their play is boring the crap out of me once again. I still have no clue what this team is going to do in the playoffs. It changes daily. Hell, I think Boston can give them a run for their money. Yet, I think they could pull an upset against the Capitols and their subpar goaltending.
The Sabres need offense. If there’s one thing I’d like for Ryan Miller to do is pull a Hasek. No, not get his head coach fired or demand a trade. Miller should tell his teammates not to worry about him and just go for it on offense. Hasek use to always tell his teammates to take chances on the offensive end. If being aggressive results in a 2 on 1 break, Hasek would have their backs (As he put it). Heck, Miller has already foiled a 2 on 0 and a 3 on 0 break over the last 6 games. So, he’s use to being alone. Plus, he already took on Canada by himself and almost won, so this should be a walk in the park.