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Bills feel week out west was good for them

By Jay Skurski

PHOENIX -- Buffalo Bills coach Chan Gailey wasn't sure what to make of staying out west all week.

After the Bills' beat the Arizona Cardinals, 19-16, in overtime Sunday, he was all for it.

"I didn't know it at the time we set it up or during the course of the week. Talking to the guys late this week and hearing the guys talk to each other, I think it was valuable for us," Gailey said.

That sentiment was echoed by several players.

"In Arizona, we were away from the distractions. It was just us in there. It was a chance for us to soul search and correct what we needed to get correct without the distractions of being back at home. It was like a getaway and great for us mentally to just be able to regroup," said safety Jairus Byrd, whose two interceptions played a big role in the win.

"Being here the whole week and being around each other every day with no distractions, just putting that [us] against the world mentality, we needed it big time," said defensive end Mario Williams, who had a pair of sacks.

It was a homecoming for quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick, who's from nearby Gilbert.

"I got to spend some time at my house out here. I got to spend some time at my parents' house. It was nice for me to be able to relax a little bit. You don't get that during the season at all, especially during a game week" he said. "It was nice for me to get out here. Waking up to the sunshine and blue skies, I think everybody has a deep appreciation for Arizona now."

Especially after leaving with a victory.

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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 |