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Bledsoe remains Bills starter

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  • Bledsoe remains Bills starter

    Bledsoe Still Starter --
    Mon Nov 15, 2004 --from

    AP reports QB Drew Bledsoe remains the starter for the Buffalo Bills. HC Mike Mularkey on Monday insisted that rookie QB J.P. Losman still needs plenty of work, considering the first-round draft pick missed almost two months recovering from a broken leg. The coach added that Bledsoe still provides the Bills' best chance to win. That said, Mularkey wasn't happy in assessing Bledsoe's performance in Buffalo's 29-6 loss at New England on Sunday. "I think he just threw some poor balls," Mularkey said. "He didn't play as well as he needed to for us to win." Bledsoe's long-term status as starter is up for debate now that the Bills (3-6), who host St. Louis on Sunday, have fallen out of the playoff picture.

Related Topics


  • DJRamFan
    [Bills] Bledsoe is still starter . . . for now
    by DJRamFan
    Mularkey won't give up on veteran despite loss to Pats


    Buffalo Bills coach Mike Mularkey still hasn't given up on his team's chances of making the playoffs this season, which explains why he isn't quite ready to begin the J.P. Losman Era any time soon. Drew Bledsoe will be the starting quarterback Sunday afternoon against the St. Louis Rams.
    After that, we'll see.

    Mularkey's reasoning Monday after the Bills' embarrassing 29-6 defeat to the New England was built more on mathematics than reality. The Bills are 3-6 with seven games remaining, including a five-game stretch that includes four road games. Ten teams in the AFC have a better record than Buffalo, and only Miami's is worse.

    Technically, the Bills can make the playoffs. Realistically, their chances are slim at best.

    "It's still too early to rule out where we're going from this point in the season," Mularkey said after meeting with his players. "There are seven games left. We're not out of it. Drew has proven in three (wins) of four (games) before this game that he was a big reason why. We'll start with Drew this week."

    Problems that had plagued Bledsoe for two-plus seasons resumed Sunday against the Patriots in what could have been the worst game of his career. He completed just eight of 17 passes for 76 yards, had three interceptions and failed to lead the Bills' offense into the red zone, let alone the end zone. His 14.3 passer rating was the lowest for any game in his 12-year career.

    "I think he just threw some poor balls," Mularkey said. "We had some guys open, and then we didn't and forced some things in there. Against that team, you can't afford to do that."

    Losman came off the bench cold as the third quarterback and wasn't much better in two series against the Pats. The Bills' first-round pick in April was sacked and fumbled the ball away on his first NFL drive and threw an easy interception on his second. He didn't exactly inspire thoughts he was the next Ben Roethlisberger, the rookie quarterback who has led the Pittsburgh Steelers to seven straight wins.

    But could Losman be a better option than Bledsoe?

    Mularkey said he merely wanted to take a peek at Losman knowing Sunday's game was basically decided, not kick-start a quarterback controversy. Mularkey wouldn't even say whether Losman, who is still not fully recovered from a broken leg, would be promoted to backup and therefore get more snaps in practice.

    "It was really just a matter of giving him some time," Mularkey said. "It was purely exposure. I don't think we put him in there to win the game. It would have been a tough comeback based on the number of scores we needed. It wasn't to start a controversial thing. It was to get a...
    -11-16-2004, 07:57 AM
  • Nick
    Losman named Bills starter
    by Nick

    Not exceptionally surprising. Even if they weren't forced into this from a monetary standpoint, Holcomb and Nall aren't exactly amazing competition....
    -08-30-2006, 04:00 PM
  • Nick
    Wilson says Bills are still huddling on starting QB
    by Nick
    Wilson says Bills are still huddling on starting QB
    Owner looks forward to seeing if Losman can make right decisions

    Leo Roth
    Staff writer

    (January 25, 2005) Watching the Pittsburgh Steelers advance to the brink of the Super Bowl with rookie quarterback Ben Roethlisberger was encouraging to see for Buffalo Bills owner Ralph Wilson.

    His team currently is pondering a switch in 2005 from veteran Drew Bledsoe to last year's first-round pick, J.P. Losman. Wilson made it clear on Monday that he's eager to see Losman play.

    "J.P., we've got a lot of faith in him," Wilson said by phone. "We think he's going to be a good quarterback, now time will tell."

    Only a short amount of time will tell what direction the Bills are headed at quarterback.

    "I don't know what we're going to do on the quarterback. That will sort itself out in the next few weeks," said Wilson, echoing comments made last week by president and general manager Tom Donahoe.

    If the Bills decide to hand the starting job to Losman, they would like Bledsoe back as his backup (they'd have to find one regardless) but not at his scheduled base salary of $3.3 million with a salary cap number that is double that. Bledsoe is due a $1.05 million roster bonus in March and it's believed the Bills have asked him to take a pay cut, or they could release him outright.

    Is Bledsoe receptive to a pay cut after renegotiating his deal just last year? Would he accept a backup role?

    "I can't guess today what people are going to do," Wilson said. "Drew's had a tremendous career. We'll see."

    The Bills are 23-25 with Bledsoe as their starter and it appears the team's top brass is moving toward the conclusion that it is time to turn to a younger quarterback who has far more upside. And they would rather make the decision soon so Losman can have seven months concentrating on the job and not a competition next summer with Bledsoe that would distract the team.

    Despite having the NFL's No. 2-ranked defense that led the league in takeaways and playing great special teams, Buffalo still finished 9-7 and out of the playoffs with Bledsoe.

    Losman, obtained in last year's draft after a trade with Dallas, represents Buffalo's first-round pick this year.

    "He's got a great arm, he's mobile, but will he make the right decisions?" Wilson said. "We've had a couple guys with great arms in the past, but along with that is his decision-making.

    "Our people ... they've seen J.P. in college and they like him very much. He's got everything, but there's a learning curve. He won't set the world on fire right away. Every QB goes through it except Roethlisberger."

    But if it could happen to Roethlisberger, who was 14-0 before...
    -01-25-2005, 01:12 PM
  • DJRamFan
    [Bills] Is there anything left to play for?
    by DJRamFan
    The Associated Press
    Drew Bledsoe watches from the sidelines Sunday night after being replaced by J.P. Losman the final two series against New England. Is it time for the 12-year veteran to take an early retirement? The Bills aren't mathematically out of the playoffs, but the season is realistically shot.
    [Day in Photos]

    The five W's
    WHO is starting to think about 2005? Bills fans should be because 2004 pretty much came to an end Sunday night in Foxboro. Mike Mularkey made reference to the Pittsburgh team he played on in 1989 that was 4-6 at one point in the season yet rallied to make the playoffs, so he's not going to give up. The rest of us can give up. This team is not making the playoffs.

    WHAT do we make of J.P. Losman's debut? Not much. The kid was terrible, but let's be fair. The game was hopelessly lost and the Patriots the defending Super Bowl champion Patriots were in a feeding frenzy. Still, two turnovers on five plays was not what Bills fans wanted to see from their QB of the future.

    WHERE was Drew Bledsoe looking when he threw that interception to Tedy Bruschi? He was trying to hit Lee Evans over the middle, but unless he has X-ray vision he couldn't have seen Evans because Bruschi was right in front of the rookie receiver. How many other 12th-year quarterbacks would have thrown that pass?

    WHEN is Mark Campbell going to re-surface? The Bills' starting tight end has gone three straight games without a pass reception. He has just 10 catches for 135 yards this season.

    WHY didn't the Bills try to make an early statement against the Pats? Last week on the opening series against the Jets, Mularkey went for a fourth-and-1 at the 12 and Willis McGahee scored a touchdown. Against New England the Bills had a fourth-and-5 at the Pats 35 on the opening possession. Too far for a field goal, too close for a punt. Why not go for the first down there? If they make it, maybe they go in and score and perhaps the game turns out different. Then again, maybe not.

    Sal Maiorana

    Leo Roth and Sal Maiorana
    Staff writers

    (November 16, 2004) Sal: It's ridiculous that we're asking this question in the middle of November about a team that clearly has talent, but when you're a team that can't win on the road, that's the plight the Bills face. Seven games to go, yet the season is basically shot. I don't think there's anything to play for except getting the team's young players ready for the future.

    Leo: I agree, although with seven games to go, there's still plenty of time to sell more beer, hot dogs and merchandise. I hear there's a No. 11 jersey clear-out sale this week.

    Sal: Didn't they already have one of those? Oh, my mistake, that was Rob Johnson's No. 11 jersey.

    Leo: Seriously, the Bills' goal these final weeks...
    -11-16-2004, 07:52 AM
  • Nick
    Bills ready to march on without Bledsoe
    by Nick
    Bills ready to march on without Bledsoe
    Veteran unlikely to back up Losman
    News Sports Reporter

    The Buffalo Bills are likely to part ways with quarterback Drew Bledsoe by the end of the month.

    It's a move that has been creeping toward reality since the team's season ended Jan. 2.

    The Bills think they need to give first-round draft choice J.P. Losman a full shot to win the starting quarterback job, according to several league sources.

    That appears certain to spell the end of Bledsoe's tenure in Buffalo because there is no way he is going to be interested in being the Bills' backup, according to two sources close to the veteran quarterback.

    Bledsoe, contacted at his Oregon home, declined to comment on the situation. He said he would respond at the appropriate time.

    Bledsoe, who turns 33 on Monday, ranks 10th in passing yards in NFL history. He believes he has plenty of good football left.

    But the Bills are not in a position to designate him the No. 1 quarterback entering the offseason because of their investment in Losman. The Bills took Losman with the 22nd overall pick in last April's draft. They gave up first-, second- and fifth-round picks in order to acquire Dallas' first-round pick to make the selection. Bledsoe would have to accept the fact that Losman will get more significant practice time and would be likely to win the job if he progresses as the team hopes.

    Those close to Bledsoe cannot see him sliding into a clipboard holding role.

    Losman already is in Buffalo for the offseason. He was the first player to report for offseason workouts Monday. (Organized offseason workouts don't begin for NFL teams until late March.)

    The release of Bledsoe would come before March 2, when the NFL's salary cap for 2005 takes effect. Bledsoe is scheduled to make $3.3 million base salary this year. He's also scheduled to get a $1.05 million bonus if he's on the roster in March. His total salary cap charge is $6.5 million.

    So the Bills would save $2.2 million in salary cap space by releasing Bledsoe. Bledsoe still would take up $4.3 million in space, which is the amount of amortized bonus money left on the Bills' books as a result of a bonus he got in May.

    Eric Moulds' contract renegotiation, coupled with Bledsoe's release, would put the Bills roughly $14 million under the projected salary cap for 2005, according to News estimates.

    The Bills would have to sign a veteran quarterback for insurance at the position. It's likely they would go after a moderately priced journeyman with experience. A high-profile starter would want a three- or four-year commitment from the Bills, and they're committed to Losman as their quarterback of the future.

    The Bills' failure to make the playoffs under...
    -02-13-2005, 05:31 PM