Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Ruminating on Bills win, baseball's foolish decision and Syracuse football

The more I see and hear from Fred Jackson the more I’m impressed. Following the Bills annihilation of the Chiefs in Kansas City Sunday in which the veteran running back rushed for more than 100 yards, he lent some perspective. “It was just one game,’’ he said. “We didn’t win the Super Bowl.”

Given the abyss the Bills have been in for more than a decade, it’s understandable to become giddy and maybe overreact a bit when things go well. I do believe they are a much improved football team from a year ago, and I can see them beating Oakland at home this week and Cincinnati in two weeks (after losing to the New England Bradys in Week III.)

Hey, 3-1 would be a great start. But even if that happens, Buffalo isn’t going to the playoffs this year. I think most rational fans understand that. But a 7-9 or 8-8 record isn’t out of the realm of possibility, and that would be a significant improvement from last year and an indication that the Chan Gailey/Ryan Fitzpatrick/Buddy Nix trio has the ship headed in the right direction.

The big thing I would like to see is for the Bills to remain relevant until late in the season for a change.


(By the way, you can read my Bills blog and watch my television interview with Thad Brown about the opening-game victory at www.rochesterhomepage.net. Once on the website, just click on the icon bearing my ugly mug and it should take you to the column and interview. Like last year, I’ll be doing blogs and interviews with sportscasters/friends John Kucko, Cory Hepola and Thad after each Bills game. Please check it out on the web or catch us on the Sunday 10 o’clock news on WUHF-TV 31 or the 11 o’clock news on WROC-TV 8.)


Watching Brady torch the Miami Dolphins for 517 yards and four touchdowns last night was a sobering reminder that the Patriots domination of Buffalo probably will continue.


Major League Baseball just doesn’t get it. The New York Mets players wanted to commemorate the 10th anniversary of 9/11 Sunday night by wearing hats representing first responders (NYPD, NYFD) during the game, but the commissioner’s office threatened heavy fines.

You’ve got to be freaking kidding me. For one night, you couldn’t put away your stodgy rules to allow a New York City team to pay a fitting tribute to the men and women who sacrificed their lives that tragic day.


Oh well, I guess I shouldn’t be surprised given who’s running the show.


Congratulations to Ryan Callahan for being named captain of the New York Rangers. He and fellow Rochesterian Brian Gionta (Montreal Canadiens) will be wearing the traditional “C” on their hockey jerseys this season. That speaks legions about them as individuals, but also reflects positively on the type of hockey players our proud burg produces. Bravo.


Syracuse football is off to a 2-0 start for the first time since 1999. The Orange men have looked shaky, but would you rather be 2-0 against two relatively weak opponents or have suffered two heart-breaking losses to strong teams, a la Notre Dame?

SU is a long ways away from being a football power and is looking at a huge challenge Saturday night in the L.A. Coliseum against a USC offense that has the potential of putting up 40-to-50 points on a defense that puts scant pressure on the quarterback.

And the following week back at the Carrier Dome doesn’t figure to be a cakewalk either. Toldeo comes to town and before you snicker, realize this: Toledo almost beat Ohio State last week.

I still like the direction that Doug Marrone has the program headed, but Syracuse remains very much a work in progress.


I was absolutely mesmerized watching yesterday’s U.S. Open men’s tennis championships between Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal. You talk about two incredible athletes. The shots they were hitting at times defied logic.


Don’t look now, but the Tampa Bay Rays are only three games behind Boston for the Wild Card berth. And the Rays have several games remaining with the Red Sox and the Yankees. We might have a pennant – or at least a Wild Card - race after all.


Anonymous said...

This is your wife. You do not have an "ugly mug".

John J. Wood said...

I've said this before and I've said it again -- the best thing that could happen to MLB right NOW is the removal of Bud "Bozo" Selig as commissioner. This is the latest of his many blunders, but the game has gone downhill under his tenure to the point he has to go!