Bills first-year coach Chan Gailey spoke with the New England media today and discussed various topics related to Sunday afternoon’s game against the Patriots at Gillette Stadium.
On the decision to start former Harvard quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick over Trent Edwards: “We needed to do something to try and create a spark for our offense. We had been very lethargic the first couple of weeks and we’re trying to find the right combination for our football team. It wasn’t what it needed to be and we changed some running backs, we changed some other people around, some receivers, and we thought it was time to change the quarterback and see if this one gives us a little bit better opportunity to win.”
On first-round draft pick C.J. Spiller of Clemson: “Well, in preseason he was outstanding, he did a great job. As we all know, preseason games are one level of intensity and at one speed, and then you when you get into the regular season it goes up a notch. So when he got to the regular season, that first game, he was going extremely fast and I was probably unfair to him to throw him in there, but the other two running backs [Marshawn Lynch and Fred Jackson] had been hurt all preseason and C.J. did a pretty good job. We backed him up a little bit this past week and he’s still going to be a dynamic player and he’s still going to make a lot of big plays for us in the future. We just need to get him going on a little slower pace than throwing him in there from the get go. He’s doing kickoff returns for us. So we let him go do that and then break him in slowly on offense.”
On Marshawn Lynch and his future with the team: `”He started last week and he’ll play a lot this week and he ran the ball pretty good, but you could tell he was a little rusty from last year not having played a ton, then getting back into it this year, he didn’t play in the preseason as well, so he’s just now getting back into it. Most everybody knows, you can never have enough running backs in this league.”
On Kevin Faulk’s season-ending knee injury and how it will change how the Bills defend the Patriots on third down: “Well, you don’t totally replace a great player like Kevin. He’s made a lot of plays for them through the years. It’s hard to replace the savvy that he had and the feel for the offense that he had. I know one thing: they’ll get somebody ready and somebody will do a good job. That’s the way they’ve always done it there, so whoever it is, you’ll have to stop him. It’s not like we can say, `We can just forget that position and what that position does.’ We’ll have to know where that person is, whoever it is, and make sure we get somebody attached to him or near him or at least discourage them from using him the ways they did with Kevin.”
On whether the loss of Faulk will put the Bills’ defense on edge: “Yeah, but I don’t like to use the term `put on edge’, but it does make us wait and see how they’re going to handle it. Are they going to put another receiver in? Or are they going to try and fill the same role with somebody else? Exactly how are they going to handle that? So, it’ll be a wait-and-see game once we get there to see what they do.”