Very good starting quarterbacks in the NFL do not make the throw Ryan Fitzpatrick made in the 4th quarter of the loss to the Titans. But do I really have to tell you that Ryan Fitzpatrick is not a very good starting quarterback? On Sunday he played exactly like the guy we have come to know and expect. He made some very good throws and a few very bad ones . In fact you could argue that for most of the day he played like the mirage that was the early Fall 2011 version of Fitz. But go ahead and call for Chan Gailey to bench Ryan Fitzpatrick. Who is going to play, Tyler Thigpen? Tarvaris Jackson? Brad Smith? You want Vince Young back? No one else in the NFL does. But the simple fact is that when 34 points at home against the Titans isn't enough to win for your team, maybe you are looking at blaming the wrong side of the ball.
The 2012 Bills defense is the most disappointing unit in the entire NFL I tried to think of a group that came into the season with high expectations and has failed so dramatically. A case could be made for Tony Romo and the Cowboys offense or maybe even Cam Newton and the Panthers. But for the sake of this argument I could care less about Dallas or Carolina. The Bills are brutal on defense and if Chan Gailey doesn't do anything in his power during the bye week, it's going to cost him his job at the end of the season.
Last year the Bills defense was bad and there were many calls for Dave Wannstedt to take over the D. Well, you got your wish,. Either Wannstedt has no idea how to coach defense in this era of the NFL (which I do not believe) or his has a bunch of dogs playing for his group. They did appear to make some adjustments in the 3rd quarter to slow down Tennessee but to use a phrase that I am sure Buddy and Chan have said many times, "The horse was way out of the barn" by then. But even with the mess that they were for most of the afternoon they were left with a chance to still win the game because their average quarterback had put 34 points on the board. Instead they failed several times, including on a 4th and 10 and lost the game by the point.
Mario Williams currently looks like the most overpaid guy in the state of New York not name Alex Rodriguez. Buddy Nix went out and signed the top free agent pass rushing defensive end in the league in the off season and that has appeared to be a huge misstep. Mario says he doesn't care about other people's expectations, but maybe he should. I am not sure what the current coaches are saying to Williams, but it doesn't appear to be getting through. If he were playing like Super Mario, maybe Wannstedt would be a better coach. Also, if that injured wrist heals during the break and he'll be able to run full speed when they go to Houston.
Chan Gailey said that they have to evaluate everything during the bye but I think he needs to start with himself. Gailey tries his best to play it by the book because that is what he has always done, but I think he needs to throw the book away. His team is not good enough to line up and beat teams, especially the good ones. If it means to fire Wannstedt, his friend and an accomplished coach, then go ahead and do it. It might not be fair, but…another bit of breaking news, life isn't fair. Chan also needs to start taking some chances that he normally would not take during the game, like going for 2 points before he is comfortable or trying an onsides kick in the first quarter. Go ahead and try it because t really can't hurt.
I like Chan Gailey and I think he is a good football man, but much more accomplished coaches than him make some drastic moves. Andy Reid, with his 14 seasons and 6 NFC Championship games in Philly just fired his friend and defensive coordinator and is certainly considering benching Michael Vick to play a rookie. If Chan is going to go down, he needs to go down swinging. The hand he has been dealt includes a backup quarterback who starts, a 4 receiver set with only one true starter and a 100 million dollar defensive end that is playing like Aaron Maybin. If there is ever a time to roll the dice to try to make this thing work, it's right now.