Two weeks ago, I swindled my brother into "writing" my Titans-Bills recap for me.
This week, following that 21-9 loss to the Texans, my dad offered up free "inspiration," either because he too wants a shot at the spotlight or because he knew that beneath my unusually calm post-game demeanor lay roiling turmoil.
Either way, he posed some good questions and brought up some valid points I feel compelled to share with you.
First, he wonders why-with some legit talent-this team still can't consistently perform.
"In my humble opinion: it's clear that Billsdom is very disappointed in the team's performance this year and I am in agreement, but the reasons for their subpar performance are subject to much dispute. Despite their record, the Bills have a high level of talent on both sides of the ball ... so why aren't they performing?"
Great question. I used to have a few theories, like that the offensive line still wasn't bolstered enough or that the defense hadn't yet found it's rhythm, but now I'm comfortable reverting back to my timeless conclusion: it's the Bills curse.
With a few more years of fandom under his belt (after all, this man is the one who doomed me to a lifetime of sorrow ... I mean, bred me Bills), my dad had more realistic musings.
"This is an intangible and not equivalent to effort. They are trying mightily, but not achieving. I sense they need to increase their focus and awareness..."
He doesn't think the team reacts fast enough to the various on-field scenarios. True. How many times have we all felt like what we were watching on the screen was completely different than what was happening on the field?
"Play calling seems incredibly uncreative. How many times a game do they have running plays up the middle into meat of the defensive line, an area even more crowded by the offensive line? Why not stretch it out more to get the line moving laterally which can create more potential lanes and gaps? Freddie and CJ will rip off a long run now and then, but overall the Bills are too predictable."
I'm torn between understanding that they're doing what they know works to get points and feeling like they should try something different.
Physicality (please note his borderline amazing intro to this bullet point):
"Granted, I myself am not an impressive physical specimen, but I sense the offensive and defensive lines are not physical enough. They are not dominating - you don't have to be the biggest or the fastest to dominate someone but you do have to think and believe you are better. Finesse only goes so far in the NFL today - to be truly successful you have to dominate physically."
I can't weigh in too much on this one because everyone looks huge to me, but I've heard similar gripes from other fans, and he's had years of football seasons and players to compare Bills 2012-13 to.
Proving that crazy rants run in the family, my dad ended his email by sharing his "pet peeve" with me.
"Pet peeve: STOP with the excessive celebrations! You are getting paid to make a tackle, or a stop, or to catch the ball - that's what you are SUPPOSED to do! My favorite player was Thurman - most times he'd score a TD and hand the ball to the ref ... that's class."
What do you think is preventing the Bills from being the team us fans know it can be? Tweet me at @lysssie or leave a comment!