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Live blog: Community meeting on potential downtown stadium

A community meeting to talk about “the feasibility of a domed stadium and convention center in Buffalo” will be held at 6 p.m. today from the downtown campus of Erie Community College. The Buffalo News’ T.J. Pignataro will be providing live updates:

Scott Chandler's knee injury scaring Bills into a tight end need

By Tim Graham

INDIANAPOLIS -- Scott Chandler suffered the same knee injury in December that fellow Buffalo Bills tight end Mike Caussin did in 2011.

Both injuries occurred in Week 16. Caussin was unable to play a game last season.

Given that, the Bills have a major need at tight end for 2013. Chandler, who scored six touchdowns each of the past two seasons, might not be able to contribute.

Continue reading "Scott Chandler's knee injury scaring Bills into a tight end need " »

Bills refute Pete Metzelaars' claim that Doug Marrone blew him off

By Tim Graham

INDIANAPOLIS -- Buffalo Bills General Manager Buddy Nix disputed a claim made by former tight end Pete Metzelaars that the team didn't call him back after inquiring about the offensive-line position under new head coach Doug Marrone.

Nix said he asked Marrone to call each coach individually, and that Marrone followed through with that request.

Nix, speaking at the NFL scouting combine in Lucas Oil Stadium today, said he told Marrone, "At least give them the courtesy of talking to them about [it], and if you've got somebody in mind, and you're not interested in them, tell them. ... And you talk to all of them."

Continue reading "Bills refute Pete Metzelaars' claim that Doug Marrone blew him off" »

Buddy Nix's top three UFA's to re-sign: Byrd, Levitre and ???

By Tim Graham

INDIANAPOLIS -- Who are the top three free agents the Buffalo Bills want to re-sign?

We know safety Jairus Byrd and left guard Andy Levitre are in that group.

The other fellow might surprise you.

Continue reading "Buddy Nix's top three UFA's to re-sign: Byrd, Levitre and ???" »

NFL releases round-by-round draft order, minus compensatory picks

By Tim Graham

INDIANAPOLIS -- The NFL has released a tentative round-by-round draft order for the upcoming draft. The order does not include compensatory selections that are awarded at the bottom of the third through seventh rounds at a later date.

These are the Buffalo Bills' slots.

  • • First round: eighth (eighth overall)
  • • Second round: 10th (41st overall)
  • • Third round: ninth (71st overall)
  • • Fourth round: eighth (TBD)
  • • Fifth round: 10th (TBD)
  • • Sixth round: ninth (TBD)

The Bills have no seventh-round pick. They traded it to the Seattle Seahawks for quarterback Tarvaris Jackson.

A plausible explanation for how C.J. Spiller might get winded

By Tim Graham

Chan Gailey was mocked, including on this blog, for claiming Buffalo Bills running back C.J. Spiller got winded. Spiller expressed dismay over the implication.

An assembly of Pro Football Hall of Fame running backs chided Gailey in The Buffalo News for not giving the ball to Spiller more frequently.

But at least one person understands where Gailey was coming from.

Continue reading "A plausible explanation for how C.J. Spiller might get winded" »

Russ Brandon: Lindy Ruff deserves a statue

By Tim Graham

INDIANAPOLIS -- Buffalo Bills President Russ Brandon marveled at what Lindy Ruff accomplished as Buffalo Sabres coach.

"They should erect a statue for him for all he's done," Brandon said. "It's one of the great stories in all of sports."

Brandon would admit to being biased on the subject of Ruff. Brandon considers Ruff "the closest of friends" and reached out to him Wednesday upon learning the Sabres had fired him.

But Ruff's longevity was amazing. He held his first head-coaching job for nearly 16 years and survived four owners if you count the time NHL commissioner Gary Bettman ran the team during its bankruptcy.

Continue reading "Russ Brandon: Lindy Ruff deserves a statue" »

No time table set for transition to Doug Whaley as GM

By Jay Skurski

INDIANAPOLIS -- Buffalo Bills President Russ Brandon left no doubt today that assistant general manager Doug Whaley's position with the team is secure.

As for when the current general manager, 73-year-old Buddy Nix, will turn the reins over to Whaley, Brandon insists no time frame has been set.

"I know that's also a popular question, [but] there's no time table for that. Doug Whaley's not going anywhere," Brandon said. "He's our assistant GM. He's in charge of all personnel. Doug, he's locked into Buffalo for the foreseeable future. There's no transition time table or plan. Buddy and I will meet on that when it's appropriate, but we haven't discussed that at all."

Whaley said his role hasn't changed since the organizational restructure on New Year's Day that saw Brandon take over as the team's president from owner Ralph Wilson.

"My role's still the same. I always tell people, my job is to make Buddy's job as easy as possible," Whaley said. "I want to go out there and, for lack of a better term, be the foot soldier to track down all this information. I need to take all the information out there, funnel it to the best three or four choices and give them the options to make that choice. It's been the same since I got here."

Russ Brandon says Bills will use franchise tag only if forced

By Tim Graham

INDIANAPOLIS -- The Buffalo Bills will use their franchise tag as a last resort.

Without mentioning safety Jairus Byrd by name, Bills President Russ Brandon told a group of reporters at the NFL scouting combine he'd rather sign players to multiyear contracts than use the franchise tag.

"It's an asset that's available to you if needed," Brandon said. "Obviously, there's a variety of reasons that you don't want to use it. You prefer not to from a cap-management standpoint, but we'll see how that goes.

"It's a tool that's there as collectively bargained, but from our standpoint, we're focused on trying to get long-term deals done."

Continue reading "Russ Brandon says Bills will use franchise tag only if forced" »

Bills still not ready to declare Ryan Fitzpatrick's job secure

By Tim Graham

INDIANAPOLIS -- Ryan Fitzpatrick's future with the Buffalo Bills remains unclear.

Bills President Russ Brandon declined to commit to Fitzpatrick being on the roster when the quarterback's $3 million bonus is due next month. Brandon also said the Bills have not approached Fitzpatrick about restructuring his contract "at this point."

Asked about whether Fitzpatrick's spot on the roster is safe, Brandon said that will be determined by General Manager Buddy Nix and head coach Doug Marrone.

Continue reading "Bills still not ready to declare Ryan Fitzpatrick's job secure" »

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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 |