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A Bush in hand sure beats McGahee

It's one of those opinionated Sundays . . .

Allow me to cast another vote urging the Bills to drop Willis McGahee on his head.

As for his so-called written "apology" for a Penthouse interview in which he urged the Bills be moved to Toronto in order to brighten his social life, I suspect that his opening line -- "It has come to my attention" -- was never thought, much less spoken, by McGahee in his entire life.

Aside from his over-inflated ego, refusal to leave Miami to work out with his teammates in their offseason conditioning program and his inability to distinguish third down from fourth down, there is a more important reason to replace McGahee. The Bills need someone to convert on third-and-1 in order to keep drives alive. He doesn't do it often enough.

It's a pretty good year for running backs in the draft. If Buffalo wanted to invest a first-round choice in one of them, the top two, Marshawn Lynch of California and Adrian Peterson of Oklahoma, likely would be gone before the Bills' turn at No. 12. There is an off-chance Antonio Pittman of Ohio State or Kenny Irons of Auburn would last until Round Two, but the most tempting possibility in Buffalo's top spot might be Michael Bush of Louisville.

Bush, a preseason Heisman Trophy candidate, broke his leg in the opening game. His recovery would have to be medically certified, but if he's healthy he's a 6-foot-3, 250-pounder with outstanding speed. He was recruited as a quarterback.


On the other hand, if Alan Branch of Michigan is still available when the Bills pick in the first round they might consider him as an answer to their weak run defense. He's a 330-pound tackle with speed and quickness, a star running back in high school.


If Angelo Crowell is moved to middle linebacker to replace London Fletcher, the cavity at Crowell's outside job could be cured through free agency. Keep an eye on Lance Briggs of the Bears, the best linebacker available. The first time I heard Briggs identified as an elite player was a couple of years ago when Marv Levy did it on a pregame show on the late Empire Sports Network. Levy is in a position to do something about Briggs becoming a Bill since he's now the general manager.


Judging by the Sabres' turnaround victory over the Bruins on Wednesday, they may have their work ethic back. The organization's Thruway hip-hop between Rochester and Buffalo worked well once again, highlighted by Daniel Paille's two goals. Paille, Drew Stafford and Jiri Novotny, all first-round draft choices, incidentally, know the layout of every rest stop between Buffalo and the Flower City.

As cheery as the call-ups contributions have been, the All-Star break is welcome for no other reason than it brings healing time to Paul Gaustad, Jochen Hecht and Henrik Tallinder, whose muscle alone would be important once Buffalo gets into the playoff stretch.

It seems obvious that too many teams consider beating up on Daniel Briere and some of his smallish teammates the avenue to wearing down Buffalo. Judging from recent games, throwback zebras and their dinosaur officiating are only too willing to accommodate them.

Larry Felser, former News columnist, appears in Sunday's editions.

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