Monday, October 15, 2007

The Buffalo Bills - A Litany of Futility

A lot of people have come to this site from a Buffalo Bils forum called Stadium Wall. Welcome!

In one of the threads, a member named "SCBuffBillsFan" posted an excellent litany of all of the heartbreaking and boneheaded losses the Bills have suffered over the past 10 years. I had forgotten, or never realized in the first place, about 10 of these. They are presented below for your perusal and enjoyment (if you're not a Bills fan).

Some would say that you can't blame all of these on Dick Jauron since he wasn't the Bills coach for the lions' share of them. Those people clearly are deluded members of the "reality-based community". Like the Bush administration, I make my own reality.



10/08/07 - COWBOYS 25 BILLS 24 - Bills turn over Tony Romo 6 times, return 2 INTs and a kickoff for touchdowns, stop a last-ditch two point conversion, and then lose when Dallas recovers an onsides kick with 20 seconds left and kicks a 50+ yard field goal with two seconds left

09/09/07 - BRONCOS 15 BILLS 14 - In a game in which the Bills never trailed, they lose on a "fire drill" field goal with one second left.


12/24/06 - TITANS 30 BILLS 20 - In Orchard Park, Vince Young runs wild, the Titans kick a field goal with 2:10 left to take a one point lead. The game ends when JP Losman throwing an INT on 4th and 5 from the Tennessee 28 yard line with one minute left, after the Bills forego the 43 yard field goal attempt due to wind.

12/12/06 - COLTS 17 BILLS 16 - Down one to the Colts in Indy, Rian Lindell misses a 41 yard field with 6:30 left. Peyton Manning never gives the Bills the ball back and runs out the clock.

09/10/06 - PATRIOTS 19 BILLS 17 - On the road to open the season, the Bills return a Brady INT for a TD on first play of game, and lead for most of the game. Then the Patriots take the lead on a *safety* by sacking Losman with six minutes left. After the free kick, Donte Whinter records an INT on the first play. The Bills proceed to go three-and-out from their own 44, punt with 6:20 to go and never see the ball again.


01/01/06 - JETS 30 BILLS 26 - In a meaningless game at home, the Jets score on a Kelly Holcomb INT for a TD and then take the lead with a Justin Miller KR for a TD with 6 minutes left. Holcomb takes Bills to the Jets 34 with with 3 minutes left before being sacked on 4th and 10. Holcomb then throws an INT on the desperation drive with 50 seconds left.

12/04/05 - DOLPHINS 24 BILLS 23 - In Miami, Lee Evans scores 3 TD's in the first quarter. Losman only completes one more pass to Lee Evans for the rest of the game. Chris Chambers catches 15 passes for 238 yards, including the game-winning TD as Sage Rosenfels in relief for Gus Frerotte takes the Fish 73 yards with 1:51 left.

11/27/05 - PANTHERS 13 BILLS 9 - Bills take a 9-6 lead at home with 5 minutes left. Future Buffalo Bill Michael Gaines scores the GW TD with 2:21 left. With 47 seconds left, on 3rd and 10 from the Carolina 43, JP Losman throws a game-ending INT.

10/30/05 - PATRIOTS 21 BILLS 16 – The Bills take a 16-7 lead with ten minutes left. The Patriots take just two minutes and 11 seconds to score a TD to pull within two points. On the next drive, Holcomb fumbles, and the Patriots need just one play to take the lead. With two minutes left, on 4th and 8 from the New England 40, a pass to Moulds gets no gain.

10/02/05 – SAINTS 16 BILLS 7 Buffalo nearly retakes the first half lead in the final seconds of when Terrence McGee returned the ensuing kickoff 82 yards, crisscrossing the field and ducking through defenders before he was finally tripped up on a weak tackle attempt inside the Saints 5 after time expired. Saints stuffed Willis McGahee on fourth-and-inches, taking possession for a drive that would lead to Carney's third field goal, making it 16-7 with 5 minutes left.


01/02/05 - STEELERS 29 BILLS 24 - In a home game to secure their first playoff birth in years, against a Steelers team playing 2nd and 3rd stringers, some guy named Willie Parker runs 19 times for 102 yards. The Bills never even come close to winning.

10/10/04 - JETS 16 BILLS 14 - On the road in New York, the Bills score 14 4th Quarter points to take the lead with 6 minutes left. The Jets' Doug Brien kicks a 38 yard field goal with 1 minute left. The game ends with Drew Bledsoe's Hail Mary being intercepted in a game that ultimately cost the Bills a playoff spot.

10/03/04 - PATRIOTS 31 BILLS 17 - At home and down 7 with three minutes left, the Bills are driving at the New England 17, when Drew Bledsoe is sacked and the Patriots return the fumble for a TD in a game that ultimately costs the Bills a playoff spot.

09/12/04 - JAGUARS 13 BILLS 10 - In Orchard Park and down 4 points with two minutes left, the Jaguars get the ball at their own 20 with one time out. On 4th and Goal from the 7 with four seconds left, Byron Leftwich hits Ernest Wilford in the back of the end zone - who somehow hangs on to the GW TD in a game that ultimately cost the Bills a playoff spot.


12/14/03 - TITANS 28 BILLS 26 - Billy Volek has a big game in Nashville. Drew Bledsoe hits Mark Campbell for a TD with 26 seconds left, but the two-point conversion fails and the Titans recover the onsides kick. This ends the playoff hopes in a season that began with the 31-0 thumping of the Patriots in the Lawyer Milloy Bowl.

11/23/03 - COLTS 17 BILLS 14 - Bills take a 14-3 lead into the 4th quarter in Orchard Park. The Bills stuff the Colts on three plays after first-and-goal from the 3. Colts punch it in on 4th and Goal from the 1 with 1:42 left and convert the two-point conversion for a three point lead. From the Buffalo 46, Drew Bledsoe throws an INT with 42 seconds left. Their third crushing loss in three weeks and their second at home.

11/16/03 - TEXANS 12 BILLS 10 - In Orchard Park, the Texans take a 12-8 lead with 3:28 left. On the first play after the two minute warning, the Bills have 1st and 10 from the Houston 31. Drew Bledsoe is sacked and fumbles. The Texans take an intentional safety to end the game, giving the Bills two safeties in the game.

11/09/03 - COWBOYS 10 BILLS 3 - In Dallas, Quincy Carter takes a four point lead into the 4th quarter. With four minutes left, the Cowboys' kicker pooch punts the ball into the end zone from the Buffalo 32 for a 12 yard net punt. The Bills proceed to go three-and-out, including an own-recovered Travis Henry fumble. Getting the ball with 2:50 to play, Adrian Murrell runs the ball down our throats to end the game.

09/28/03 - EAGLES 23 BILLS 13 - Down 3 points at home with 2:50 left, the Bills are using their timeouts on defense to try and get the ball back. The Eagles get one first down through the air, and then Brian Westbrook scores on a 62 yard TD to all-but ice the game. On a desperation drive, down 10 with 1 minute left, Drew Bledsoe is flushed out of the pocket on 4th and 8 and proceeds to throw the ball away out-of-bounds! Good grief!

09/21/03 - DOLPHINS 17 BILLS 7 - In Miami, the Bills are down 10 to 3 with 6:43 to play. Getting the ball at their own 34, they run for two yards, have a false start, and a Drew Bledsoe sack. On 3rd and 19, the pass is incomplete. Miami then rips off a three minute drive, when the Bills appear to stuff Ricky Williams on 3rd and Goal from the 1 on the first play after the two minute warning. A booth review is called, and Miami is given the TD and a 10 point lead. Down 10 with 1:48 to play from their own 20 with one timeout, Drew Bledsoe manages to drive to the Miami 24.


11/17/02 - CHIEFS 17 BILLS 16 - In Kansas City, the Chiefs take a one point lead with five minutes to go. Five plays later, the Bills have 2nd and 10 at the KC 40 when Drew Bledsoe throws an INT on a deep pass towards the end zone. The Chiefs take the ball with 4:15 to play and proceed to run out the clock.

09/08/02 - JETS 37 BILLS 31 - The Bills tie the season-opener at home with a Bledsoe-to-Moulds TD pass with 26 seconds left. They lose in OT as Justin Miller takes the opening kickoff of overtime for a touchdown.


12/16/01 - PATRIOTS 12 BILLS 9 - In one of the great ironies of football history, a Bills team that will finish 3-13 takes a Patriots team that will win the Super Bowl to the wire, ending up holding Tom Brady to 19 of 35 passing in Orchard Park. The Patriots tie the game with 2:50 left. Alex Van Pelt then proceeds to lead the Bills on a three-and-out. With 1:50 left, the Patriots get the ball at their own 13 and advance to their own 45 with one minute left. The Bills sniff out a screen for -2, nearly get an interception, and finally Schobel sacks Brady to end the threat. With 22 seconds left at their own 16, the Bills unwisely try to make something happen. Alex Van Pelt fumbles, but the Bills recover to thankfully get to OT. In OT, the Bills advance to their own 48, but throw an incomplete pass on 3rd and 2 and punt. The Patriots are then at their own 46 when David Patten catches a pass, is knocked silly by Keion Carpenter, and fumbles. Nate Clements recovers, and advances the ball into Patriots territory. On replay review, however, David Patten's head rolls out of bounds while his body is touching the football. By rule, the ball is out-of-bounds and New England retains possession. Two plays later, NE kicks the winning FG. Had the Bills won, New England would not have made the playoffs (let alone won the Super Bowl), Bill Belichick would have been a lifetime .500 football Head Coach, and the world would have been a very different place.

11/25/01 - DOLPHINS 34 BILLS 27 - In Buffalo, the Fish score 24 points in the 4th Quarter. The Fish score a TD with 4:15 left, and the Bills proceed to go three-and-out, with an incomplete pass on 2nd down, and a completed pass short to Larry Centers on third down. Olindo Mare kicks a 39 yarder with 1:17 left, and Nate Clements fumbles the ensuing kickoff. Three plays later, the Fish have a seven point lead. Alex Van Pelt gets the ball with 43 seconds and two timeouts, but is unable to seriously threaten.

11/11/01 - PATRIOTS 21 BILLS 11 - Antowain Smith ices the game with a 42-yard TD run with three minutes left.

10/28/01 - CHARGERS 27 BILLS 24 - Doug Flutie scores on a GW 13 yard TD run with one minute left.


12/17/00 - PATRIOTS 13 BILLS 10 (OT) - In Foxboro, the Patriots kick the game-winner with 19 seconds left in OT. The Patriots finish 5-11, the Bills finish 8-8.

12/11/00 - COLTS 44 BILLS 20 - In Indy, with both teams at 7-6 with three games left, Wade Phillips says that "both teams are basically out of it." The Colts win their last three and make the playoffs.

10/01/00 - COLTS 18 BILLS 16 - In Buffalo, Mike Vanderjagt hits a 45-yard game winner as time expires.


01/08/00 - TITANS 22 BILLS 16 Music City Miracle and last Buffalo playoff game.


01/02/99 - DOLPHINS 24 BILLS 17 (PLAYOFFS) - A complicated tiebreaker forces the Bills to play this game in unseasonably warm weather in Miami. The run out of gas as the Dolphins end the magical "Flutie Year" in Buffalo. Of course, by all rights, the game should have been at Ralph Wilson stadium....

11/29/98 - PATRIOTS 25 BILLS 21 - In the game at Foxboro that would bring instant replay back to the NFL, on 4th down, Drew Bledsoe of the Patriots throws a pass that is caught out-of-bounds and short of the first down marker. Bills players later report hearing one referee telling the other "just give it to them." The game was seemingly over when Bledsoe's Hail Mary to the endzone fell incomplete. The referees, however, called a ticky-tack pass interference penalty on Buffalo, even though instant replays would show a Bills defender being mugged by a Patriots WR in the Hail Mary scrum in the end zone. The Patriots are awarded one untimed play, on which they score the game-winning TD. In protest, Wade Phillips refuses to contest the extra point, and the Patriots walk the snap in for an uncontested two point conversion.

09/20/98 - RAMS 34 BILLS 33 - Tony Banks scores on a 2 yard run with 10 seconds left.

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