Sam gives his thoughts on the disappointing performance of Ryan Fitzpatrick, Quarterback for the Buffalo Bills.
Editors Note: I (Cameron Heffernan) have been a Bills fan since Jim Kelly and Thurman Thomas went 0-for-4 in the Super Bowl. I originally planned on doing a weekly thing about the Bills, going game-by-game as the season went along. Since yesterdays 48-28 drubbing to the Jets, I have since reconsidered, for this week that is, doing the weekly write up. For now though, I’ll let fellow writer Sam Accardo take over for this week and vent my frustrations through him. If not, this would’ve been a profanity laden tirade.
Unlike the other writers here at Hefferbrew, I’m relatively new to sports. I grew up just playing video games, trading card games, and watching Star Wars. So back then, sports always seemed like wasted time compared to a 4 hour marathon of GTA 3. But when my girlfriend told me she was a Patriots fan (leave the hate at the door please) and she said we should watch a game, I was all in. That was almost 3 years ago. Today, I love sports as much as I love video games. But when you’re a Buffalo Bills fan, it makes it really hard to love watching sports.
Coming out of the offseason, I was excited for Buffalo. A positive change in the atmosphere amongst fans is a feeling, I’ve been told, hasn’t been felt in a long time. I’ve been a fan since the beginning of the “Fitzpatrick era”. And if I’m being perfectly honest, I consider myself a fan of him, but not of his work.
We all know the tragic story of Fitzpatrick from last season. He led the Bills to a hot 5-2 start and then slid for 7 games resulting in an overall season record of 6-10. And as much as I heard the hate and the chants for Fitz’s head, I was still a fan of his work back then. Sure, he threw for a nasty 23 interceptions (which is inexcusable) but he can work under pressure, he can move around in the pocket, and he can make some deadly short passes. And when he’s on, he’s really on. A week ago, that would’ve been enough to keep me on Fitz’s side, but in today’s game against the New York Jets at their house, Fitzpatrick disappointed the Bills, the city of Buffalo, and me.
Fitzpatrick threw 3 interceptions on his first regular season game. On a season after he was the best at throwing picks, he starts of his 2012 season with 3 turnovers. I’m sorry Fitz, but I can’t take it anymore. The Jets scored 24 points based off of turnovers, and the Bills only lost by 20 points after all was said and done. If Fitz had even thrown 1 interception, the Bills would still very much be in that ball game. And as much as I want to hold onto that, I can’t. Because who knows if Fitz can really improve his accuracy. Supposedly this was the first offseason where he had a quarterback coach who could go over footwork and fundamentals. Well, either Ryan needs a new coach or he better start doing a lot more drills this week.
I’ve been looking forward to this game ever since we signed Mario Williams. I’ve been anticipating Fitzpatrick’s performance all summer and I was so excited to finally say “See everyone?! Fitzpatrick can really be a quarterback in this league! He is underrated!” But Fitzpatrick just proved everyone right, and left me asking what happened to all that training in the off season. I’ll be a Bills fan as long as I love football (and I love it very much), but #14 is just making it harder and harder for me to find reasons to like his play.
Let’s face it; the Buffalo Bills and their fans are looking to finally end the 12 year playoff drought. And with some big splashes in free agency and lots of money spent on keeping Jackson and Johnson, the Bills really set themselves up for a good year. Playoffs? My fingers are crossed. But that can only happen if Fitzpatrick finally starts throwing some accurate passes (and Tom Brady’s leg explodes taking him out for the season).
Thank god C.J. Spiller is going to have an awesome year.
Sam Accardo is a proud Buffalo Bills fan since his family comes from Niagara Falls. He knows that it’s only the first game of the season, but he’s getting tired of trying to defend Fitzpatrick for the same crap week in and week out. Follow his anguish on twitter @samcar455. And more importantly, follow @Hefferbrew to stay updated on what’s looking to be a great 2012 NFL season.