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Gailey feels Bills are headed in right direction

Posted by Greg A. Bedard  February 24, 2011 01:18 PM

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INDIANAPOLIS – We’ll start our look around the AFC East with the Buffalo Bills and coach Chan Gailey.

The Bills are coming off a 4-12 season in Gailey’s first season as coach, and will have the third overall pick behind the Panthers and Broncos.

“I’m excited for our football team,” Gailey said this morning. “I think we’ve laid a decent foundation. Don’t have wins to show for it, but I think we have a decent foundation to be able to build on that and have a successful playoff football team. And I’m looking forward to seeing the additions that we make, that’s why we’re here this week and then build from that to see where it takes us.

“I think we’re on the right track. I do. I believe we have character on our football team. I believe they understand. Hopefully we’re going to get better in each phase of our football team and you’ve just got to get them to understand how to win that close game. We had a bunch of close games that we didn’t win. As soon as we learn how to take care of business in some of those closer ones then you get over the hump. You get over the hump, you get some confidence. You get some confidence, great things can happen.”

Here are some comments from Gailey on a few other topics”

On if he would draft a QB at No. 3….

I think you have to look at all scenarios. You’re trying to take care of immediate needs and at the same time take care of the long-term franchise good. So as you look at it, you have to consider all scenarios.

On the QB group in general…

It’s a different quarterback group. These guys have been in a lot of different types of offenses. It’s just not your cut and dried pro style-types of quarterbacks that are in this draft so you are projecting a little bit more, maybe than we have in years past in this group. There are a few of them that have been in that. Then again in the past couple years you had guys that hadn’t been under center very often. How are they going to react? How are they going to be able to handle that? You can handle it in shorts, but can you handle it when there’s big guys on the other side about 2 yards away coming at you. There’s a different thought process.

On if they might go the pass rush route…

You look at any football team that’s out there and everyone of them puts a premium on pass rushers. Everybody does. Anytime there’s a good group of those guys out there, which it looks like there is a pretty good group of pass rushers out there this time, then you’re going to see those guys, everybody taking a real close look and you can’t say they move up faster because they move up fast already. But at least maybe more people will get a chance to have one this year.

On what kind of base defense his team will be in…

I think we’re going to be a hybrid. Some 3-4, some four-man front. I think we’re going to be a little of both. A lot of teams are doing that now, using 3-4 in certain situations, using four man in certain situations. And that still creates the problem for the defense as long as you have enough 3-4 to keep them honest. I think we will be multiple, hybrid, whatever term you want to use.

On Cam Newton…

I’m anxious to see him continue to work out. I’m anxious to see what he’s going to do here this week. Obviously had a great year. I watched him several times on TV. I have not studied him to this point yet. I’ve looked at little bit of tape but not studied him. He’s a big athlete that is in that Wildcat mode but obviously has the ability to go to the dropback passer mode.

On where former Harvard quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick fits in…

I’ve said all along I am extremely confident in Ryan Fitzpatrick. I really am. I think that he played well enough until he got to the very end, the next to last game he was in when he got banged up. I think he played well enough to prove to a lot of people, me and our staff included, that he can play well and we can win a bunch of football games with a guy like that. I’ve been in the playoffs a couple times with guys that haven’t performed as well as Ryan as. So I think we can do it.

On how 2010 first-round pick RB C.J. Spiller worked out last year…

It didn’t work out like everybody planned – he planned, I planned, any fan out there planned, it didn’t work out like any of us planned. I still think he will be a very good to great player for the Buffalo Bills. There’s no question in my mind about that. I think I’ll do a better job this year of creating ways to use him more. When you are establishing what you’re trying to get done offensively, you have a hard time deviating too much to do things for one guy to create things for one guy. Because we were in the process of evaluating everybody and trying to create things for everybody on our offense because it was just a ‘getting to know you’ year. So I think I’ll do a better job next year of incorporating him and I think he has to get better at ball security and pass protection. Those are the two areas he’s got to get better at. And I’m not telling you anything I haven’t told him."

News, analysis and commentary from Boston.com's staff writers and contributors, including Zuri Berry and Erik Frenz.

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