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Super Bowl LII was packed with local connections, from Western New York natives on both teams to former Buffalo Bills players and coaches. Here’s a look at how they fared Sunday night: Philadelphia Eagles • Offensive coordinator Frank Reich: The architect of the Greatest Comeback as a quarterback for the Bills finally has his first Super Bowl ring on his sixth chance…

In one breath, Nigel Bradham says all the things you’d expect to hear from a pending unrestricted free agent. Of course, the Bills’ linebacker would like to be back in Buffalo. Yes, he thinks the defense can improve greatly in 2016. “I really hope I'm back,” Bradham said Monday, as the Bills cleaned out their lockers following an 8-8 season. “This is where I was drafted.…

1. Will there be any changes to the coaching staff? Owner Terry Pegula announced last week that General Manager Doug Whaley and head coach Rex Ryan will return to 2016. Left unsaid, so far, is the status of the team’s assistant coaches. Special teams coordinator Danny Crossman could be a convenient scapegoat for the team, being that he was not a Ryan hire and his unit reg…

1. Keep giving Sammy Watkins plenty of opportunities. Cornerback has been a weak spot for the Cowboys since Orlando Scandrick tore his ACL during training camp. Scandrick is Dallas’ best defensive player, and has proven difficult to replace. The Cowboys went more than a full season without a cornerback registering an interception until Terrance Mitchell picked off the Jet…

The Buffalo Bills' injury-ravaged defense can add illness to the list of afflictions. Defensive end Mario Williams missed his second straight practice Thursday because of an illness, leaving his status for Sunday's game against Washington up in the air. Williams came in late Wednesday night to meet with defensive line coach Karl Dunbar and go over the game plan, and was a…

The Buffalo Bills have some decisions to make with several of their injured players in the coming days. With their postseason chances hanging by a thread, the possibility exists that the team could elect to shut players like cornerback Stephon Gilmore and rookie running back Karlos Williams down for the season. Gilmore missed his first game of the season Sunday because of…

Injuries have taken much of the guess work out of projecting which seven players will be inactive for the Buffalo Bills on Sunday against the Philadelphia Eagles. Cornerback Stephon Gilmore (shoulder), running back Karlos Williams (shoulder), linebacker Nigel Bradham (ankle) and cornerback Ron Brooks (concussion) were previously ruled out by coach Rex Ryan on Friday. Her…

Rookie linebacker A.J. Tarpley must have been really bad Sunday against the Kansas City Chiefs in the eyes of his coaches. That's the only logical conclusion that can be drawn from the Bills releasing Tarpley on Monday, just a day after he played 26 defensive snaps in place of the injured Nigel Bradham in a 30-22 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs. Bradham is expected to mis…

After appearing to finally overcome the injury bug, the Buffalo Bills have been bitten by it again. Defensive end Alex Carrington is expected to miss the rest of the season with a torn quad suffered in Sunday's 30-22 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs, the latest injury along a defensive line that has been hit hard in recent weeks. "It doesn't look good," Ryan said. "I know …

Remember back in January, when the storyline was that the Buffalo Bills upgraded at head coach when Doug Marrone bolted and Rex Ryan was hired? After the fourth quarter Sunday against the Kansas City Chiefs, it's hard to make that case. Ryan put on a stunning display of incompetence when it came to using his challenge flag in a 30-22 loss, the last example of which came …

The struggles of the big-money members of the Buffalo Bills’ defensive line in adjusting to coach Rex Ryan’s scheme have been well-documented. Less publicized, but still very much real, have been the struggles of the team’s starting linebackers – particularly every-down players Nigel Bradham and Preston Brown. It’s not that Bradham and Brown have been bad. But like the d…

Whiff. Whiff. Whiff. That sums up the Buffalo Bills' defensive effort on the New York Giants' decisive touchdown. First Nigel Bradham couldn't corral running back Rashad Jennings. Then Preston Brown couldn't bring him down. Finally, safety Bacarri Rambo let Jennings get past him. The result was a 51-yard touchdown pass that put New York up, 24-10. It's safe to say from …

Tight end Charles Clay did it all for the Buffalo Bills on Sunday. Clay finished with five catches for 82 yards and a touchdown against his former team, the Miami Dolphins, in playing 89 percent of the Bills' offensive snaps. His performance when the ball wasn't in his hands was equally as strong, according to the analytics website Pro Football Focus. Clay was the Bills'…

The "bad" Tyrod Taylor emerged in the second quarter Sunday against the New England Patriots at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Taylor was intercepted on the first and second-to-last plays of the quarter as the Patriots took a 24-13 lead to halftime. Taylor's first throw of the quarter intended for tight end Charles Clay was too high, leading to an interception by Patriots cornerb…

Bills

1. Get Shady going. The Bills’ running game totaled 147 yards in Week One against Indianapolis, but only 41 of them came from franchise running back LeSean McCoy. After the game, he admitted to not being 100 percent coming off a hamstring injury, but played 71 percent of the offensive snaps, so the coaching staff must have thought he was close. McCoy was held to 2 yards o…