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Fred Jackson takes blame for goal-line failure

By Jay Skurski

Bills running back Fred Jackson shouldered the blame today for his team's failure to get into the end zone on four straight plays from inside the 2-yard line Sunday against the Cincinnati Bengals.

Jackson gained a yard on first and goal from the Bengals' 2-yard line on the final play of the first quarter. He was then stuffed for no gain on two straight plays from the Cincinnati 1 to start the second quarter. The Bills went for it on fourth down, but were stopped when quarterback Thad Lewis rolled to his right and couldn't find anyone to throw to. He was eventually dropped for a 1-yard loss by linebackers James Harrison and Vincent Rey.

"I've got to make something happen. As a running back, you know, three opportunities to score on the goal line, you want to put that on yourself. I didn't get the job done," Jackson said. "That's something I've got to be motivated about and make sure it doesn't happen again. My coaches give me the ball, three straight shots at the goal line right there, I've got to make something happen. I haven't looked at it yet, but it's something I will look at and see what I can do and be better at, given another opportunity."

"Credit Cincinnati," Bills center Eric Wood said. "We knew they had a good goal-line defense. We just weren't able to make the plays, and ultimately that caught up to us."

Wood said the momentum in the game shifted at that point. Instead of being down, 14-10, the Bengals drove 98 yards for a touchdown to go up, 17-7.

"In an overtime game, all points are crucial. Yesterday we just got beat on blocks. Didn't really get any push," Wood said. "They didn't really give us a crease."

Wood explained after the game why the Bills chose not to go with a quarterback sneak on one of the four plays.

"It kind of depends on the defensive look. The way they play is with the nose and two defensive tackles on the guards -- with Harrison sitting right behind them," he said. "So it's not a good sneak front."


Eric Wood | Fred Jackson | Thad Lewis
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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 |