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MONDAY BILLBOARD

Big Picture: - The Bills were thorough ly outplayed and looked sloppy in the bar gain. Starting 0-1 is one thing, starting 0- 1 in what figures to be the tightest divi sion race in the NFL is much worse. If they can't play better than they did Sun day, they're capable of losing to any team in the NFL.

Play of the Game: - Peyton Manning threw a 24-yard rocket of a touchdown pass to Marvin Harrison midway through the third quarter. It gave Indy a 21-6 lead and breathing room for the rest of the af ternoon. The ball went between corner back Ken Irvin and Kurt Schulz in a space about as big as a porthole.

Hit of the Day: - First play of the sea son. Doug Flutie thew a short pass to Thurman Thomas. It was high. Thurman had to leap and when he did, Colt corner back Tyrone Poole had a bead on him and delivered a shot that damaged his ribs. X- rays were negative, but Thurman's future availability is unknown.

Player of the Game: - Manning. He completed 21 of 33 passes for 284 yards and two touchdowns, but his effectiveness went beyond statistics. He was in com mand, cooly dominating the game.

Unsung Hero: - Tony Blevins, the Colts' 165-pound second-year dime back. Not only did he put the game away with a 74-yard interception return TD late in the last quarter, he led his team with seven tackles, knocked down a pass and assisted on a special teams tackle.

Zebra Watch: - Did the Bills actually go to training camp? It didn't look it. They had a dozen penalties, equally dis tributed with three in each quarter. Dusty Zeigler, getting his first start at right guard, was the only offensive lineman without a penalty. The Zebras blew a pass interference call on Indy safety Jason Bel ser that cost Buffalo a touchdown catch by Jay Riemersma.

Senior Moment: - To be precise, 60 senior moments by Bruce Smith. He looked all of his 36 years and then some. Bruce didn't make a tackle until well into the second half. He had two penalties, in cluding an unsportsmanlike flag for rough ing Manning. From an affirmative stand point he wasn't a factor.

Odd Decision: - For most of the first half the offensive strategists used Kevin Williams as their third receiver instead of rookie Peerless Price. Their rationale was experience comes first. The problem was that Williams not only didn't catch a ball, he dropped a vital third-down pass that would have kept a drive going into India napolis territory late in the first half. It would have been prudent if Williams had been allowed to concentrate on his return work. As it was he had his best day as a Bill in that department.

Barrel of Fun: - The national anthem was performed by a polka band, which won a contest among 300 Indy area bands and singers to earn the honor. They did a fine job.

Quotable: - "I don't think we were ready to play on the road for some rea son." -- Bills coach Wade Phillips.

Counting the House: - A crowd of 56,238 was delighted. Finally, the Indy fans have something to watch.

Coming Attractions: - The Bills open the home season next Sunday night against the New York Jets, who lost quar terback Vinny Testaverde for the season in their opener.

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