Skip to primary navigation Skip to main content

C.J. Spiller doesn't regret playing, calls goal-line fumble 'crucial'

By Tim Graham

When an opponent comes into your house and kneecaps you so thoroughly, there are all sorts of places to find blame. The Buffalo Bills gave up 52 points and lost by more than three touchdowns.

But Bills running back C.J. Spiller shouldered the blame for a momentum-swinging mistake at the end of the second quarter Sunday.

The Bills were on the doorstep of taking a 21-7 lead over the New England Patriots in Ralph Wilson Stadium. The Bills also scored on their first possession after halftime, so they should have been up 28-7.

That wasn't the case because Spiller -- on a shotgun handoff from the 4-yard line -- fumbled on the goal line with 71 seconds left until halftime.

"That was crucial," Spiller said. "That was totally crucial. That was the turning point of the game. That's totally on me, nobody else. I've just got to do a better job of securing the ball, especially down there.

"For us to walk away with nothing ... You can't do that and win games."

Spiller, who hurt his shoulder last week against the Cleveland Browns and was questionable for today's game, said the injury didn't bother him. He claimed not to have any pain.

"I felt like I could go today," Spiller said. "The main thing that I said is, 'If I can be effective I'm going to get out there.' I'm not going to get out there if I felt I couldn't be effective or contribute in some type of way for our team. I felt I was good enough to do that."

Spiller and Fred Jackson -- returning from a knee injury on opening day -- alternated possessions.

Jackson ran 13 times for 29 yards and caught three passes for 50 yards. He also lost a fumble. Spiller had eight carries for 33 yards and two catches for 5 yards.

comments powered by Disqus

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 |