|Buffalo Bills team members run on the field during the pre-game ceremonies before they play the Indianapolis Colts in their preseason game in Toronto. (Mark Blinch/Reuters)
TORONTO - The beating that Buffalo and their beloved Bills receive from the sports gurus and wiseguys is merciless and unrelenting.
On the national stage, the Bills and Buffalo are of absolutely no account and the only time they get mentioned is in some form or another of a well-worn cheap shot.
Take this week’s edition of NFL Fox Sunday Roundtable posted Friday on FoxSports.com.
Each week it features a conference call with ‘insider’ John Czarnecki on various topics with the FOX NFL Sunday crew.
One of the three topics up for discussion Friday was former San Diego Chargers great linebacker Shawne Merriman, who was released and claimed by the Bills.
Instead of discussing the downward slide of Merriman and how or if he could help the 0-7 Bills, the good ol’ boys reverted to tired old cliche’s about the rotten weather found there and of course, chicken wings.
John Czarnecki: “What really went unnoticed this week was Shawne Merriman going to the Buffalo Bills.”
Michael Strahan: “Merriman has fallen so far that people don’t even care that he’s going to Buffalo. It’s kind of a shame for how great he used to be. Going to Buffalo is not good news after it was probably 78 degrees yesterday in San Diego.”
“But the Bills put a claim in on him, while with Randy (Moss), he slipped down the waiver wire because some teams didn’t want to pay him $3.4 million.”
Howie Long: “The Bills picked him up because Buddy Nix, the guy who drafted him in San Diego, is now the general manager in Buffalo.”
Curt Menefee: “This is simply a move to convince their fans that they are still trying to be competitive. This is a franchise that is $25 million under what they spent last year. They haven’t come close to spending this year. They want to show the fans they are not giving up on this season.”
Howie Long: “The first snowfall is about to hit. And once that happens, it’s depressing there for five months. They are hoping they can sell him on the chicken wings and the enthusiasm of the fans.”
Jimmy Johnson: “I know exactly how he feels. I would hate to be asked to go up there and do an interview next month.”
Michael Strahan: “But at least you could get in and out of there in one day.”
Give me a break.
Thanks for the expertise, boys.
MY LEFT FOOT
Historically, the Carolina Panthers have always played the New Orleans Saints tough, even the past few seasons when the Saints moved from being a team on the rise to a Super Bowl champion.
Last year the two teams split their games with the Panthers’ 23-10 victory coming on their home field in the final weekend of the regular season.
Big deal you say. Consider this. In the past 10 meetings, the Panthers have won seven times, so a big upset is a possibility.
However, on the negative side — and it’s easy to find plenty on the 1-6 Panthers — they’ll have to get by for the second consecutive week without their top running back DeAngelo Williams, out with a sprained left foot.
It will be a blow offensively for the Panthers, who will give Jonathan Stewart the start at running back.
Stewart managed just 30 yards on 14 carries in last Sunday’s loss to St. Louis in which the Panthers had all of 25 net yards rushing.
In their loss to the Rams, the Panthers should have given Stewart one more carry. Stats show that when he carries the ball 15 or more times, the Panthers have gone 15-0.
Hard to believe, I know, but true. You can look it up.