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Stevie Johnson absolves Graham: 'He's never run that route'

By Tim Graham

The needle on the blame-o-meter continues to wag back and forth.

Buffalo Bills coach Chan Gailey, quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick and rookie receiver T.J. Graham have tried to out-regret each other over the interception that snuffed what would've been a magnificent comeback victory Sunday in Gillette Stadium.

This morning, Bills receiver Stevie Johnson divulged some information that would seem to point the needle at Gailey.

Johnson said Graham never had practiced that fateful play.

"We know T.J. can make that play," Johnson said. "We know he can. I don't think that it was the wrong play, but just the whole thing leading up to it, which is he didn't run that play in practice at all. It was not his fault at all.

"I've ran that play, or Scott [Chandler] ran it or Donald [Jones] runs it. But in that situation, I guess things was hurried up, and we had people in positions where maybe you shouldn't have been. Who knows what would've happened if it was Donald or me or Scott there?

"So there's no blame on T.J. at all because he's never ran that route in practice or a game."

To be sure Johnson wasn't mistaken, I followed up with Graham, who told me he hadn't practiced that play since training camp.

But the third-round pick still accepted blame for not running the proper post route.

"I'm more experienced with that route," Johnson said. "Donald is and Scott is more experienced with that route. In that situation, we should've had more experience there."

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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 |