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Marquise Goodwin: 'I'm ready to go' despite elbow injury

By Tim Graham

Marquise Goodwin has endured some bad luck as a rookie.

His preseason finale ended early because he got poked in the eye. He broke his right hand on opening day and missed four games. He dejectedly left Sunday's game against the New Orleans Saints on a cart.

Goodwin offered some good news today. His elbow injury isn't as serious as it looked.

"No worries at all," Goodwin told reporters today at his locker stall. "I'm ready to go."

Continue reading "Marquise Goodwin: 'I'm ready to go' despite elbow injury" »

C.J. Spiller dealing with high-ankle sprain

By Jay Skurski

The Buffalo Bills finally made the decision Sunday to rest running back C.J. Spiller.

A day later, it became a little more clear as to why.

Spiller is suffering from a high-ankle sprain, coach Doug Marrone told reporters.

"It's like a spot that's sore," Marrone said. "It is a high ankle, which normally is a bit worse than the other ones."

Spiller was first injured in Week Four against Baltimore. He played sparingly the next three weeks, but Marrone indicated last week the team may need to sit Spiller in an effort to get him back to 100 percent. That happened Sunday.

Continue reading "C.J. Spiller dealing with high-ankle sprain" »

Points after: Saints 35, Bills 17

Bills Saints Football.JPE#2

By Tim Graham

NEW ORLEANS -- Quick highlights from the Buffalo Bills' loss to the New Orleans Saints in the Superdome ...

What it means: The Bills are 3-5 with a to-be-expected result against one of the NFL's supreme teams and in one of the toughest stadiums to play. Thad Lewis turned in another gritty performance, withstanding several shots, but his production was pedestrian.

Player of the game: Drew Brees seemed to have a shaky first half, yet went into halftime with three touchdown passes, a 149.2 passer rating and an 11-point lead. He finished 26 of 34 for 332 yards and five touchdowns with no interceptions.

Bills MVP: Fred Jackson was reliable again. Without backfield mate C.J. Spiller, Jackson carried the offense as far as he could. Jackson ran 15 times for 45 yards and a touchdown. He had all but 3 of those yards in the first quarter because the Bills were playing from behind. He added two catches for 8 yards.

Bills play of the game: Stevie Johnson capped a fine second-half drive with a leaping grab in the end zone. Johnson had four catches for 42 yards on the series. His touchdown was from 13 yards out.

Preliminary injury report: The Bills deactivated Spiller to help him overcome his nagging left ankle injury and linebacker Manny Lawson. ... Johnson hobbled off the field in the second quarter with an apparent left groin injury. He returned later on the same drive, but came out again in the third quarter and was limited for the rest of the game. ... Running back Tashard Choice had a left leg injury checked out in the fourth quarter and was cleared to play. ... Receiver Marquise Goodwin hurt his left elbow in the fourth quarter and was carted to the locker room.

Coming up: The Bills return home next Sunday to play the Kansas City Chiefs in Ralph Wilson Stadium.

Marquise Goodwin injures elbow

Bills wide receiver Marquise Goodwin was taken to the locker room with an elbow injury in the fourth quarter.

MemoraBillia: Marquise Goodwin autographed his way to health

By Tim Graham

Marquise Goodwin's recovery from a busted hand involved some unusual therapy.

The Buffalo Bills receiver and return man got the strength back by signing autographs.

Card manufacturer Panini America, as it does with dozens of rookies, sent Goodwin a box of his cards for him to sign so they could be randomly inserted into 2013 Contenders Football packs.

A member of the Bills' medical staff suggested Goodwin sign the cards as part of his recovery from a fractured right hand.

Continue reading "MemoraBillia: Marquise Goodwin autographed his way to health" »

Snap counts: Marquise Goodwin doesn't get much work

By Jay Skurski

The Buffalo Bills went big in an effort to protect quarterback Thad Lewis on Sunday in Miami.

No. 2 tight end Lee Smith played 32 of 67 offensive snaps for the team against the Dolphins, which was 48 percent. Smith, as he usually is, was used almost exclusively in a blocking role, although he did make his second catch of the season, for 18 yards.

Even with the bigger lineup, the Dolphins still managed to get four sacks of Lewis, and hit him six times.

The Bills also used Frank Summers on 11 snaps (16 percent). He got his first two carries of the season, and gained 14 yards.

Most interesting among the snap counts for the Bills' offense was the use of rookie receiver Marquise Goodwin. Coming off his huge 40-yard touchdown catch against the Bengals in Week Six that sent the game to overtime, Goodwin saw only five offensive snaps (7 percent) against Miami. Robert Woods (63 snaps, 94 percent) and Stevie Johnson (60 snaps, 90 percent) played almost the entire game, most often joined by T.J. Graham (34 snaps, 51 percent) when the Bills went three wide.

Running back Fred Jackson (39 snaps, 58 percent) came back from a knee injury in the first quarter to lead the team with 11 carries for 36 yards and a touchdown and four catches for 49. Jackson's leadership, however, doesn't show up in the stats book. C.J. Spiller managed just 14 snaps (21 percent), while third back Tashard Choice played 12 snaps (18 percent).

The starting offensive line -- including left guard Doug Legursky in his first start of the season -- played the entire game (67 snaps).

Rookie tight end Chris Gragg (six snaps, 9 percent) also saw his first action of the season.

Continue reading "Snap counts: Marquise Goodwin doesn't get much work" »

Bills have attempted second-fewest kickoff returns in NFL

By Jay Skurski

Good weather early in the season and a run of kickers with strong legs have limited the Buffalo Bills' opportunities on kickoff returns.

The Bills have just four kick returns through the first five weeks of the season. Only the Atlanta Falcons, with three, have fewer attempts.

"It's definitely frustrating, but a lot of times we go into the games knowing -- based on the kicker in the past couple games, how well he's kicking the ball -- they're going to kick touchbacks," kick returner Marcus Easley said. "As far as the number of opportunities we get, they're coming few and far between. When we do, we just want to make them pay."

Easley has three of the Bills' four returns, for 55 yards, an average of 18.3 yards per attempt. Fellow receiver T.J. Graham has the other, for 19 yards. The Bills' average return of 18.5 yards ranks 31st in the NFL, ahead of only Green Bay's average of 12.1 yards on seven returned kicks.

Continue reading "Bills have attempted second-fewest kickoff returns in NFL" »

C.J. Spiller, Leodis McKelvin, Doug Legursky get green light

By Tim Graham

CLEVELAND -- Running back C.J. Spiller's injured ankle won't keep him out of tonight's game against the Cleveland Browns.

The Buffalo Bills have announced their inactive list for tonight, and Spiller isn't on it. Neither is cornerback Leodis McKelvin nor guard Doug Legursky.

But two-time Pro Bowl safety Jairus Byrd is.

Here is the complete list:

Buffalo Bills

  • Wide receiver Marquise Goodwin
  • Tight end Chris Gragg
  • Offensive lineman Sam Young
  • Cornerback Ron Brooks
  • Cornerback Stephon Gilmore
  • Safety Jairus Byrd
  • Kicker Dustin Hopkins

Cleveland Browns

  • Quarterback Jason Campbell
  • Running back Fozzy Whittaker
  • Offensive lineman Patrick Lewis
  • Offensive lineman Martin Wallace
  • Defensive lineman Billy Winn
  • Linebacker Jabaal Sheard
  • Linebacker Quentin Groves

Leodis McKelvin, Jairus Byrd unavailable; Ray Rice active

By Tim Graham

Buffalo Bills cornerback Leodis McKelvin has been ruled out, and safety Jairus Byrd will not make his season debut.

A pregame workout of McKelvin's hamstring wasn't encouraging enough for the Bills to dress him for today's game against the Baltimore Ravens in Ralph Wilson Stadium.

Byrd, the two-time Pro Bowler, will miss his fourth straight game with plantar fasciitis.

For the Ravens, running back Ray Rice is active and will start. He was sidelined last week with a hip injury.

Here are all of the inactives:

Baltimore Ravens

  • Wide receiver Jacoby Jones
  • Wide receiver Brandon Stokley
  • Guard Jah Reid
  • Center Ryan Jensen
  • Defensive tackle Terrence Cody
  • Inside linebacker Arthur Brown
  • Safety Jeromy Miles

Buffalo Bills

  • Wide receiver Marquise Goodwin
  • Guard Doug Legursky
  • Cornerback Ron Brooks
  • Cornerback Stephon Gilmore
  • Cornerback Leodis McKelvin
  • Safety Jairus Byrd
  • Kicker Dustin Hopkins

Jairus Byrd, Leodis McKelvin questionable on final injury report

By Tim Graham

Buffalo Bills coach Doug Marrone has announced the team's final injury report for Sunday's game against the Baltimore Ravens in Ralph Wilson Stadium:

Out

  • Wide receiver Marquise Goodwin (hand)
  • Cornerback Stephon Gilmore (wrist)
  • Kicker Dustin Hopkins (groin)

Questionable

  • Cornerback Leodis McKelvin (hamstring)
  • Safety Jairus Byrd (feet)

Probable

  • Running back C.J. Spiller (quadriceps)
  • Wide receiver Stevie Johnson (hamstring)
  • Guard Kraig Urbik (knee)
  • Guard Doug Legursky (knee)
  • Defensive end Mario Williams (ankle)
  • Defensive tackle Marcell Dareus (ankle)
  • Defensive tackle Kyle Williams (Achilles)
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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 | tgraham@buffnews.com


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 | mgaughan@buffnews.com


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 | jskurski@buffnews.com

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