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Pulling For Spikes

People often ask me if I'm a Bills fan deep-down. I have to remind them that I don't root for the home team. It's my job to be objective, to serve as the team's biggest critic. It's a continual amazement to me how many fans simply don't comprehend the role of a columnist.

But I'm only human, and I am sometimes guilty of rooting for individual players. One of them is our old friend, Takeo Spikes, who played some of his finest football with the Bills from 2003-06. I remember how Spikes would talk about his burning desire to play in a NFL playoff game. He's still waiting. Spikes has been in the league for 13 years. He's played 187, none for a playoff team. Only one of his teams had a winning season. That was the '04 Bills, who lost their finale to finish 9-7 and miss the postseason.

Spikes is now with the Chargers, so he has a shot at going for the first time. Maybe he'll even get to the Super Bowl. General manager A.J. Smith, who lured Spikes to San Diego, is the Bills' former director of pro personnel. From 2004-09, Smith's Chargers won the most games of any team in history without reaching the Super Bowl. A part of me is rooting for A.J. to get there some day, too.

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