Orchard Park, NY (WGR 550) -- I know it’s unbelievable, but some are calling for Bills Defensive Coordinator Dave Wannstedt’s head after just four games.
Buffalo has given up 100 points in two games against divisional rivals New England and the Jets including 580 yards offense to the Patriots and almost 300 yards rushing to a couple of unknown runningbacks.
Chan Gailey fired George Edwards and brought in Wannstedt and he of course still has confidence in him.
As inept as the game plan against New England was because it featured Bryan Scott playing most of the game and Kelvin Sheppard and Arthur Moats on the bench, Chan Gailey had no problem with it, “That was fine. I’m fine with it. I’ve got complete confidence in Dave and what they’re trying to do and where we’ve got our people situated. That’s the majority of it, is where do you have your people situated? We’ve got our people in the right spots. We’re sound. We just have to continue to get better. We have to be able to stop the run which we did for two games and we didn’t for two games. I think we’re capable of doing that.”
It really looked like Wannstedt just stayed with much of the same defense throughout which wasn’t designed for the run. Gailey said, “We tried to play eight in the box and they were still running the football, so we’ve got to make sure we play more on their side of the line of scrimmage. We played on our side of the line of scrimmage too much. We have to play the game more on their side of the line of scrimmage. We have to create more penetration, get the linebackers more downhill and things like that. That’s the one thing you can do to create a difference. If we play them again, that would be our thought process. How can we play more on their side of the line of scrimmage?”
One of the biggest things I noticed was the horrific tackling by the Bills or just plain whiffing. Gailey didn’t disagree with that, “Yeah, a lot of missed tackles. We had a lot of missed tackles yesterday, way more than we have had in games before.”
So would it have been that bad if they tried to stop what was beating them? Gailey said, That’s a concern and that’s where you have to weigh who do you put in there, how do you play your ends, how do you play your tackles and how much do you blitz to try to offset some of that. We know the problems. How do you try to offset some of that?”
Chris Kelsay didn’t play as much because it was nickel defense throughout. Why didn’t the Bills get out of it? Kelsay said, “That’s a good question. Dave addressed it a little bit this afternoon in our meeting. He talked about last night laying there wondering if we should’ve been in our base defense or not. Really, it comes down to whether or not you think matchup wise if a guy is good enough to play in certain situations or if in the passing game if you’re better apt to cover guys. but really this game came down to us, in the second half especially, not playing with that sense of urgency that we played with in the first half. We said at halftime that we wanted to make them match our intensity and they came out and played with attitude that they were not happy with the way they played in the first half. Obviously, we couldn’t match their intensity. It definitely didn’t turn out the way we wanted it to. We were bad in fits versus the run. The frustrating thing about it is they didn’t do anything we hadn’t prepared for all week. It is just a matter of getting it corrected and moving forward.” Kelsay added, We did prepare for it, we just didn’t execute it. Throughout the course of the week we work on certain things on Wednesday, we work on certain things on Thursday, same with Friday and our walk through on Saturday. We didn’t neglect the run game preparation, we just didn’t execute it.”
As far as giving up 45 points in one half Kelsay said, “We didn’t foresee that at all. Coming in at halftime we gave up I think 80 yards on the ground in the first half and we felt that we were going to score enough points on offense that if we held them to another 80 in the second half, we still should’ve won that game, but when they climb 250 yards or whatever it ending up being, it’s hard to win those games. People talk about the turnovers offensively, it doesn’t matter, when we’re put on the field whether it’s a sudden change, a short field, it’s our job to get the ball back into our offense’s hands si it all works together.”