ORCHARD PARK NY - SEPTEMBER 12: Roscoe Parrish #11 and Steve Johnson #13 of the Buffalo Bills react to Parrish's 31 yard touchdown catch against the Miami Dolphins during the NFL season opener at Ralph Wilson Stadium on September 12 2010 in Orchard Park New York. Miami won 15-10. (Photo by Rick Stewart/Getty Images)
I imagine many of you will read this headline and expect me to claim that the Buffalo Bills, and head coach Chan Gailey in particular, need to get Roscoe Parrish onto the field of play more often. That is not the point I'm going to make here, as that would be an unreasonable request; Parrish played 44 of 54 offensive snaps against Miami in Week 1, at least 14 more than any skill position player not named Trent Edwards, Lee Evans or Steve Johnson.
Instead, the Bills need to focus on making Parrish a more important option in their offensive attack.
Five Bills receiving threats were targeted by Edwards more often than Parrish against Miami, despite many of them seeing significantly less field action. Evans and fourth receiver David Nelson were targeted seven times apiece. C.J. Spiller was thrown to six times. Steve Johnson was the target on five Edwards throws, and even Fred Jackson (four) saw more targets than the three Parrish did.
Yet despite the small amount of attention paid to him in the passing game by his own team, Parrish was still able to score the team's only touchdown, while simultaneously logging the team's only offensive play that gained over 20 yards.
This isn't a call for the Bills to pay an unreasonable amount of attention to Parrish. The only way this offense will consistently move the ball this year is by striking a proper run/pass balance and distributing the ball evenly. "Taking what the defense gives you," if you will. But Parrish needs to be a bigger part of that plan; he's one of only three players on this team that can score from any point on the field. The playing time is a step in the right direction, but the team is only scratching the surface of what Parrish could mean to this offense.