Buffalo Bills quarterback Frank Reich and wide receiver Don Beebe improvised on the pattern that went for a 43-yard gain and set up the Bills' fourth-quarter field goal in their 17-13 victory over the New York Giants Saturday.
"The play was designed to go over the middle, but Frank told me to just do a streak, take him deep," said Beebe. "I had told him on the sidelines I thought I could get by the guy."
After taking a lot of flak for the long pass he didn't catch against Philadelphia, Beebe has made big catches the last two games. He had a third-down reception to set up a touchdown against Indianapolis and then the 43-yarder Saturday.
He has seen more action the last two weeks than in the previous 11 games.
"The leg's getting better each week," said Beebe, who was plagued with a hamstring problem since training camp. It's just a matter of getting back into it and the offense going 'gun' a lot now."
A lot was made of the Bills' no-huddle offense in the postgame comments, but Bills coach Marv Levy minimized its importance.
"It's more mystique than anything," Levy said.
"No huddle didn't win, guys who played hard and were motivated did," Levy added.
Bills owner Ralph Wilson was impressed with the effort his team put out.
"They played hard," Wilson said. "They played hard when he (Jim Kelly) was in there, and they played hard after he left."
Among the Bills unsung heroes: Fullback Jamie Mueller. He had three tackles on special teams, some key blocks on Lawrence Taylor on running plays.
Center Kent Hull had the block on Giants safety Greg Jackson which sprung Thomas on his 48-yard run with a screen pass before the first Bills touchdown.
For the fifth game in a row and seven in the last eight, the Bills scored a touchdown on their first offensive series.
In fact, for the second week in a row Buffalo scored on its first two possessions.
On their third possession Saturday, Buffalo started from inside its 1-yard line because rookie Al Edwards let a Sean Landeta punt drop in front of him (he was standing at the 10-yard line) and it rolled to the 1, where Reyna Thompson downed it.
The Bills' longest kickoff return of the season went to waste. Edwards returned the second-half kickoff 54 yards to the New York 45, but the Buffalo drive stalled.
Rodney Hampton of the Giants had his best game of his rookie season, running for 105 yards in 21 attempts. But it was Lewis Tillman, not Hampton or Ottis Anderson, who started the game at running back for New York.
The Giants actually used four different running backs on their opening touchdown drive. Tillman, Hampton, Dave Meggett and finally Anderson appeared in the lineup. It was Anderson who got the call on fourth down at the Bills' 1 and scored the lone New York touchdown.