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One for bad, two for good: Nick Barnett big liability in coverage

By Tim Graham

Once again, we take a look inside the Buffalo Bills' numbers in a way Raymond Babbitt would approve. It's one for bad, two for good ...

One for bad

* ProFootballFocus.com grades Nick Barnett as the second-worst 4-3 linebacker in coverage based on passer rating. PFF has charted opposing quarterbacks throwing into Barnett's coverage area 37 times for 32 completions, 358 yards, 209 yards after the catch and three touchdowns. Barnett has broken up one pass.

Two for good

* STATS Inc.'s data shows C.J. Spiller ranks sixth in the NFL and third among running backs with 389 yards after the catch. This includes yardage gained on receptions behind the line of scrimmage because Spiller officially has only 332 yards.

Spiller is averaging 12.2 yards after the catch. The running backs ahead of him in total YAC, Ray Rice and Trent Richardson, are averaging 8.8 and 9.7 YAC.

* STATS Inc. also sheds some insight on how valuable Stevie Johnson has been on third down. He's tied for third in the NFL in first-down receptions of third and longer than 7 yards (seven catches) and tied for second in first-down receptions of third and shorter than 3 yards (four catches).

Overall on third down, Johnson is tied for sixth with 16 first-down catches.

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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 | [email protected]


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 | [email protected]


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 | [email protected]

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