Niagara Gazette

Columns

December 17, 2008

LUCINSKI: What have the Bills got to lose?

We at the Gazette have a fine sports department, one of the best. Sports Editor Tim Schmitt and his staff do a great job handling the local sports scene, ranging from youth activities to the area professional teams and everything in between.

So in no way is this meant to steal their thunder or to take away from their expert opinions. It’s simply the thought of one fan of the Buffalo Bills who, as has been stated before in this space, has followed the team since its first season in 1960.

Bills Head Coach Dick Jauron must go. He sealed his fate Sunday in calling a rollout pass play for fumble-fingered quarterback J. P. Losman. It was a point in the game where a couple of running plays and one first down would have sealed the Bills win. Instead, Losman played down to expectations and lost the ball. The New York Jets found it, picked it up and scored a touchdown. Defeat from the jaws of victory. It’s getting monotonous.

Time for full disclosure. When Jauron was hired, I was all for it. I thought we had the son of Marv Levy, another classy guy with a brain in his head. After a couple of the chuckleheads the team had for coaches earlier in the decade, Jauron seemed to be a big improvement.

But he appears to have lost the team. After this year’s great start, it’s been a tremendous crash. The end of his three-year contract looks like a good time to end his tenure in Buffalo.

But a wise organization, whether it be a professional football team or any other business, doesn’t throw out the old without having at least an idea of what the new should look like. Teams in the National Football League seem to have a penchant for that; simply tossing the coach then starting from scratch, blindly fumbling around to see who might be out there as a replacement.

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