A Boring and Bland Offense Might Be a Thing of the Past for the Buffalo Bills
Watching the Bills offense the last few seasons has bordered on tedium. Having nobody open downfield on a consistent basis became boring and monotonous. But 2009 might be different.
One thing we know, Lee Evans is certainly happy about the addition. With the still dazzling Owens playing opposite Evans, defensive backs will have their hands full.
Not since 2002 with Eric Moulds and Peerless Price have the Bills had such potential for a dangerous one-two punch in their passing game.
Evans is coming off a decent season where he had 1,017 yards to go along with 63 receptions. He only had three touchdowns. His completions per game and yardage totals dropped as the season progressed due to seeing more coverage from the defense.
In late season losses to the Jets and Dolphins, Evans only caught seven passes for 45 yards combined. Those are not the kind of numbers a team should be getting from its top wide receiver down the stretch against division rivals.
Why the lack of production from a guy who has proven to be a fairly reliable receiver and possibly the best deep threat the Bills have ever had?
Without a viable option at No. 2, Evans was double-covered and teams quickly learned how to take him out of the offense's plans.
Josh Reed played very well for the Bills but he should be lined up in the slot more often. He is ideal as a possession receiver picking up those tough yards over the middle.
Roscoe Parrish is an exciting player when the ball is in his hands, but lacks sufficient size to compete with bigger defensive backs.
James Hardy had a poor rookie year--catching only nine total passes--and he left a lot to be desired, as most rookie wide outs do.
Adding Terrell Owens to the mix gives the coaching staff a whole new set of options; subsequently, forcing opposing defenses to not solely concentrate on Evans as they had in the past. Owens is an immediate upgrade over anyone else on the Bills' roster and brings big playmaking potential to complement that of Evans.
The addition of 4th round pick, receiving tight end Shawn Nelson, gives the Bills even more options in their new and improved passing attack.
Let's not forget the receiving options that line up at running back. Marshawn Lynch, Fred Jackson, and Dominic Rhodes are all very good at catching passes out of the backfield.
Hopefully the Bills will not be forced to overuse the "check down" to the running back with as much frequency as they did last year. "Checking down" was quarterback Trent Edwards' way to get rid of the ball to avoid a sack and hopefully gain some positive yardage.
With the receivers being completely bottled up, more often than not, Edwards was forced to throw short passes to Lynch or Jackson regularly for little or no yards.
With the receivers potentially being more open, running backs can stay in and block or make it out to the flat where they have room to gain some yards in the open field.
All of this is increasingly beneficial if the Bills do decide to implement some form of the no-huddle offense. Turk Schonert's offense could benefit greatly from the no-huddle and keep the defenses guessing.
Playing uptempo will force defenses to simplify their game schemes just to keep up with the Bills' offense. Playing at this speed will wear down the defense, making it harder for them to substitute players, and make it easier for all Bills players, from the line to the receivers.
Implementing the no-huddle seems like a no-brainer for the Bills but it takes a highly dedicated and intelligent team to run such an offense. It rests on Schonert and how well he and his staff can prepare Edwards and the offense to run such a difficult game plan.
If they really do use the no-huddle and the passing game opens up with the addition of Owens, look for the Bills to have a very dangerous offensive attack in 2009.
Tedium and monotony of the recent years could be replaced by action and excitement.
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