I am still feeling disappointed about losing Pettine and am trying to stay positive about the current status of the Bills. I feel like we are in a spot where we are forced to speculate on our defense with out yet knowing exactly what will be in store with our new DC.
I figured instead of chiming in on all the 4/3 vs 3/4 or wide 9 talk and the guessing game of mocking a draft or predictions on potential free agents I thought it might be fun to do a list of my top 20 favorite Bills players since I have devotedly followed the team. And if anyone else wants to throw in a list of top 20's 15's 10's 5's or more that would be great.
Before I start I just wanted to add that gowing up as a young boy I was a fan of the Winnipeg Jets NHL team and we used to lose on a regular basis to the powerhouse Wayne Gretzky led Edmonton Oilers. I guess it gave me some thick skin for going through the tough times that have followed since the Bills AFC Champion years of the 90's and the struggles we face with the New England Patriots.
Without further ado I will begin
# 20 London Fletcher. Truly a class act and a great LB one of the most underrated players of his time. He is a warrior I just wish he was with us longer.
# 19 House Ballard. A monster on our Oline, I only wish I had a better appreciation back then for the men in the trenches j would have watched him more closely.
# 18 Shane Conlan. A very steady member of our defense in his time.
# 17 Jairus Byrd. I love screaming the "Byrd Man" out loud when he makes a huge pick for us. I hope he stays. Ibelieve he likes it here and loves his teammates but then there's the business side of it. He could easily jump up the list if he stays and continues his high level of play.
# 16 C.J. Spiller. I so want for him ro be the player he is capable of being. We saw so much of his potential in 2012. He is still capable of many great things. I hope he is healthy in 2014 and we utilize his strengths to the fullest.
# 15 Pat Williams. He was a true run stuffing specialist. Man do I miss the days of teams running into our brick wall. Unfortunately he was the start of a bad trend of the FO not re signing players they should have.
# 14 Frank Reich.This pick is almost based on the greatest comeback of all time alone. I had some friends on my football team that were Houston Oilers fans and thet were starting to get cocky. That game one my all time favorites and allowed me to keep my head up high with Bills pride.
# 13 Kiko Alonso. I can't remember ever having a rookie join the Bills that made such an impact. May the Legend of Kiko Alonso continue to grow.
#12 Stevie Johnson. I forgive Stevie for this off year. His back to back to back 1000 yard seasons made me a believer and I hope he buys into the vision of the teams future and helps us get there.#11
# 11 Fred Jackson. He is the inspirational leader of our football team and a man I am proud to look up to. Fred embodies everything the Bills stand for to me.
# 10 Henry Jones. I loved our Safety Henry Jones he was awesome to watch and had a cool facemask. Dad would watch the games with me and after he made a big play he would say " save the bones for Henry Jones "
# 9 Antowoin Winfield. Man could this kid tackle. He hit like a LB and he was a CB. Such a classy player. I wish he played his whole career with us.
# 8 Nate Odems. This guy just simply made plays when we had to have them. Clutch in the playoffs.
# 7 Lee Evens. WRis my favorite position to watch and Lee was just such a burner. I remember we were playing Houston on the road and he caught 2 80 plus yard bombs in the same game. It was awesome and then he would just casually drop the ball out of his hand after he scored.
# 6 Eric Moulds. He was a beast. Only Bills WR to ever catch 100 balls in a season. I loved opening the paper on Wednesdays to see where he stood in the standings for catches and yards.i coukd never play fantasy football. I love my Bills and nobody else!
# 3 I have a 3 way tie between Thurman Thomas Bruce Smith and Biscuit. Bennett was my favorite LB of all time Bruce is the Legend of the Sack and the all time leader in the NFL and Thurman was incredible. My only slight knock on Thurman was he played for the Dolphins after.i remember him telling all his teammates that we practiced in doors and that the team hated the cold. Then they beat us at home. On a side note I love that coach Marrone has the team practice outside in the cold when necessary.
#2 Machine gun Jim Kelly. He was our leader and played QB like a LB he helped run one of the most exciting offenses of all time. I especially appreciate his work in the community and with Charities. He will move to #1a if he buys the team and keeps them in Buffalo!
#1 Andre Reed. My Idol. The reason I love football so much was watching Andre in his prime. He was a huge part of the KGun and as a member of our triplets diserves to be in the HOF. One of my proudest sports moments took place at practice back in my high school football days. I was my teams starting strong safety but they wanted to try me on offense. I caught a crossing pattern over the middle in front of our best LB and took it all the way for a TD. My best friend siad you looked just like Andre Reed. He was already my idol at the time. I wound up staying at Safety for the rest of my football days. But I will rember that day for the rest of my life.
I hope this helps take our minds off the tough changes the Bills have been going through and would love to see some lists from fellow rumblers. Long or short. Go Bills!
# 18 "House" Ballard. A beast on our OLine and a key part of our attack.i wish back then I had a better appreciation of the Hogs in the trenches I would watched him mord.
# 20 Shane Conlan. Another LB similar to Fletcher in being steady reliable and a very important part of our defense in the Marv Levy era.
# 19 "House"Ballard. He was the anchor of our O-line. Back in those days I didn't realize as how important the men in the trenches are otherwise I would have watched him more closely.
# 18 Pat Williams. This big man had the it factor on the D-line and was a part of a defense that teams just could not run the ball against. Man do I miss having a good run defense. It's been to long! Unfortunately he was the start of a long list of players that the Bills made the mistake of not re signing.