The Buffalo Bills losing to the Washington Redskins isn't a big deal in and of itself. The starting offense not gaining any momentum can be considered a bigger deal and the vocal leaders on the unit spoke out this weekend about the changes that need to take place.
"Yeah it definitely was [a wake up call] because it is only so long where you can be the old Bills, just getting beat around and lose confidence," said receiver Stevie Johnson. "It is time to turn it around and take over. And I think we have the team that can do it this year. So why not go out there and go hard and try to take this division?"
Johnson also mentioned that the team needed to prepare mentally as much as physically, laying the foundation for a successful season on the field.
"We've got to be better," Johnson said Saturday. "Preseason game, practice, we've got to be better if we want to get to where we want to be. Mentally we have to prepare like champions really. We got to get past the whole 'let’s win this many games in a row.' We have to be thinking like champions right now. Aggressive and dominant, that’s it."
Johnson's quarterback, Ryan Fitzpatrick, didn't mince words when talking about Thursday night's contest and the need to move on.
"It is unacceptable what we did but we do not need to overreact either," said Fitzpatrick on Sunday after practice. "I think there is a great sense of urgency in our team since the end of last year and how we finished up last year. Preseason, you want to go out there and play well but it is not the end of the world. We are still going to be 0-0 at the end of the preseason and ready to go. That being said, I think offensively we feel a little bit embarrassed in terms of what we put out there, and the penalties, and just the fact that we were not crisp in what we were doing. So, we want to go out and clean some of that stuff up for the next few games."
Fred Jackson ran a few routes Thursday night but didn't notch any touches. Like Fitzpatrick, Jackson reiterated that it was a preseason game and that the Bills offensive playcalling was very "vanilla" but there are areas he thinks the offense can work on.
"We want to eliminate the penalties," said Jackson on Saturday. "I think that is the number one thing we can take from that game is we have to be sharper than we were Thursday. We are going to lose a lot of football games if we play like that."
When asked about Johnson's comments, head coach and play caller Chan Gailey was pleased.
"Good," Gailey said. "I'm glad he feels that way. If everybody doesn't feel that way, we're in trouble."
The Bills offense will get their next chance to show what their offense can deliver when they take on the Minnesota Vikings on Friday night at 8 PM.