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Bills Lose. Again.

Moments ago, the Buffalo Bills completed another collapse and lost to the New York Jets 31-27. With a record of 6-8, the Bills have ensured they will continue their streak of .500 or worse records to 5 straight seasons. Worse yet, the Bills have had one winning season in the past 9 years. But let’s not dwell on the negatives of the past decade; let’s focus on the disaster that was today’s game.
After last week’s disaster, Dick Jauron was criticized for consistently winning the coin toss and effectively choosing to receive in the second half. Well, fortunately for him, the Bills didn’t even win the toss this week. The Jets won it, opted to receive, and promptly marched down the field to take an immediate 7-0 lead. In a sloppy, lead-changing game, the ineptitude of the Bills coaching staff didn’t appear until late in the game. But more on that later.
Despite the immediate deficit, the Bills played opportunistically. The defense picked off Favre twice. Marshawn Lynch had a remarkable day running for 127 yards on 21 carries. JP Losman (aka Opera Man with a beard) appeared competent for fleeting moments as he ran for an 8 yard touchdown and passed for a 2 yard touchdown. And, of course, the special teams did all they could with a successful fake punt (leading to an opening field goal) and a Roscoe Parrish 56 yard punt return.
Through it all, the Bills led 27-24 with just over two minutes remaining – and they had the ball. The Bills had received the ball with 4:20 left on the game clock and, from their own 10 yard line, Lynch ran the ball 3 straight times and gained a first down. Facing a first and 10 with 2:11 left, the Bills ran again and gained 5 yards. So far so good.
Then the Jets called timeout with 2:06 left.
This, sadly, gave the Bills coaching staff time to think. Coming out of the timeout, the Bills called a pass play on 2nd and 5 from their own 27 yard line and exactly no one was surprised when Losman was sacked, fumbled the ball, and the Jets returned it for a touchdown.
While the game was essentially over at that moment, Losman did manage to turn the ball over 2 more times in the last two minutes for a grand total of 3 quarterback turnovers in the last two minutes. You don’t win too many games doing that.
Dick Jauron may find a way to generate a third consecutive 7-9 season, but that seems like a long shot at this point. This Bills team joins an exclusive club of 4-0 teams that missed the playoffs, and there is very little reason for hope that the organization is heading in the right direction. Jauron has coached for 8 full seasons in the NFL – 1 winning season, 7 losers.
There are unconfirmed reports that Jauron signed the 3 year contract extension the Bills allegedly offered him months ago. As Losman dropped back to pass with just two minutes left, I suspect all of WNY immediately began praying those reports are inaccurate.

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