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Chandler thrilled about Jackson, Spiller combo


By Tim Graham

I might have located the biggest fan of the Buffalo Bills keeping Fred Jackson and C.J. Spiller on the field at the same time.

Bills tight end Scott Chandler is pumped about what the possibilities could mean for the 2012 offense.

"It's going to be really exciting to see those two guys put on a show," Chandler told me after Monday afternoon's voluntary workout in Orchard Park. "I just think we're going to have defenses on their heels all day, not knowing whether it's coming on the ground or through the air."

Chandler, waived by three teams before he got to Buffalo, emerged as an attractive option for Ryan Fitzpatrick last season.

Chandler posted career stats with 38 catches for 389 yards in 14 games. His six touchdowns tied the club record.

Those numbers could escalate with defenses keying on Jackson and Spiller. An aggressive safety could get caught cheating and find himself in deep trouble with a 6-foot-7 target running free up the hash marks.

"We've got those two guys in the backfield that defenses have to be scared of right now," Chandler said. "With that, it's going to open up stuff in the passing game for us.

"Those linebackers have to be looking in the backfield all the time. Then the safeties start hitting it. You start getting up those seams.

"It all works together. If we can soften up the defense, then Fred and C.J. are going to run all day. If they get the defense up [toward the line of scrimmage], then hopefully we can hit them up top."

Bills coach Chan Gailey also is bullish about Chandler's impact in 2012.

"I don't see any reason he shouldn't have a better year this year than he had last year," Gailey said. "He and Fitz have a great feel for each other at this point in time. He's made some plays down the field. He's a big target. I see nothing but more positive things happening for him in the future."

(Photo: James P. McCoy/Buffalo News)

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About Press Coverage

Tim Graham

Tim Graham

Tim Graham returned to The Buffalo News in 2011 after covering the NFL for three years at ESPN and for one year at the Palm Beach Post. Before that, the Cleveland native spent seven seasons on the Buffalo Sabres beat for The News and was president of the Boxing Writers Association of America.

@ByTimGraham |

Mark Gaughan

Mark Gaughan

Buffalo native Mark Gaughan started working at The News in 1980 and has been covering the Bills exclusively since 1992. He is a former president of the Pro Football Writers of America, and he is a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame selection committee.

@gggaughan |

Jay Skurski

Jay Skurski

Jay Skurski joined The News in January 2009. The Lewiston native attended St. Francis High School before graduating from the University of South Florida. He writes a weekly Fantasy column in addition to his beat writing duties.

@JaySkurski |