Following their Week One victory over the Indianapolis Colts, the Buffalo Bills were feeling pretty good about the start to the 2015 regular season. So good, in fact, that head coach Rex Ryan was feeling some type of way on Monday during his weekly, day-after-game press conference in Orchard Park.
In between Ryan spewing fire, there were some things to take away from what the head coach said. Here’s five of them:
1) Rex not happy with run blocking
- It was plain to see even from a statistical standpoint, but the film backs up the claim that the offensive line has a ways to go to get to the level they want in run blocking. Ryan told reporters that the effort of the unit, as a whole, was not their best outing. The head coach believes the offensive line can get their after cleaning up some issues with technique, but knows they need to be much better than they were against the Colts, especially considering there will be tougher defensive lines on the schedule than the one they just faced. He did, however, rave about the performance of left guard Richie Incognito, calling his day “outstanding.” The other four, though, need to step up.
2) This week is the measuring stick
- Some teams and coaches will downplay an individual matchup that offers a bit of history to it. Rex Ryan isn’t one of those coaches, and by proxy, the Bills are not one of those teams. Ryan called the Patriots “the hunted” because of their Super Bowl victory last season, and added that they’ve been preparing for the Patriots for a long time — at least much longer than this week. Ryan has had some success against the Patriots in big spots, despite his 4-9 lifetime record against them, and offers up game plans that can get to quarterback Tom Brady. This game will be a true litmus test for the Bills. They know that to take the next step, New England must be the ones to pass. Sunday should be a lot of fun.
3) Patriots RBs don’t concern the head coach
- Rex Ryan doesn’t care about New England running backs, apparently:
— Joe Buscaglia (@JoeBuscaglia) September 14, 2015
Ryan, while essentially discounting what the Patriots running backs (and here, more specifically Dion Lewis) do, attributed their running room to having Tom Brady as their quarterback. Even still, the Bills will need to be cognizant of who Bill Belichick elects to feature on Sunday at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Other than knowing who is on the field, it doesn’t appear that Ryan cares much about their effect on the game in totality.
4) New nickname for Goodwin
- Wide receiver Marquise Goodwin has been sidelined since a Pittsburgh Steelers defender tackled him in the third preseason game, fracturing two of his ribs. Goodwin hasn’t practiced since, and Ryan has made past comments about how some of the wide receiver’s progress involves him being able to sleep through the night. When giving insight on injuries, Ryan cleverly labeled Goodwin “McRib.” It’s just another sign that Mondays after games are much, much different than they were this time last year under Doug Marrone.
5) Graham’s status unclear for Sunday
- The Bills escaped the win over the Colts with only one injury to speak of, and that was to starting safety Corey Graham. He was declared out shortly after being checked in the first quarter for a concussion, and has now entered the league’s concussion protocol. Ryan said they want what’s best for Graham, and hope he’s ready, but “if he’s not, he’s not.” No one can really predict how a player reacts to a concussion, and Rex Ryan seems to be preparing for life without Graham if need be. If that’s the case, Bacarri Rambo will be in the starting lineup.
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