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A Top 10 Assessment of Bills Game

Paul Peck

Here’s a Top 10 list of things to take from the WBBZ-TV and NFL Network coverage of the Buffalo Bills’ 19-14 victory over Miami Thursday night.

  1. WBBZ General Manager Bob Koshinski said the 18.3 rating that the station received was about what it expected because it was simulcasting The NFL Network feed that received a 13.9 rating. The collective 32.2 rating was up about 20 percent from the Bills-New England rating, the lowest-rated game of the season. However, it was in line with most Sunday afternoon game ratings. That makes it a little disappointing since the occasional prime time games the Bills get often generate higher ratings. Koshinski added that WBBZ’s post-game rating exceeded expectations.

The post-game rating of about 7.5 at 11:45 p.m. slipped to a still decent 3.5 at midnight. That’s better than Jimmy Kimmel gets on Channel 7 here for his ABC late-night show.

Not many people seemed to care about the two-hour WBBZ pregame show hosted by Koshinski. But at least the 1.3 rating for the two hours is higher than the rating “The Fred Jackson Show” gets on Mondays.

“Broadcasting the game was absolutely worth the investment and all the hard work by the entire WBBZ staff,” wrote Koshinski in an email.

2. It is too bad that a technical glitch meant The NFL Network didn’t show the nation the impressive military salute the Bills prepared for pregame ceremonies.

3. It was nice to hear former Channel 4 sportscaster Paul Peck offer analysis on the WBBZ post-game show. But I could have done without Twitter comments being read. I read enough of them during the game. I certainly didn’t need to hear a tweet from a politician.

Mike Mayock

4. Mike Mayock might not be the most entertaining prime time analyst, but he may be the most informative. He gave an interesting description of the Bills’ two-level or two-layer pass route, noted that safety Jarius Byrd makes up for his lack of speed with his instincts, criticized Bills back Tashard Choice for  “lack of effort” on a third down pass play, and had several other interesting observations. He also noted that he wasn’t sure that anyone has gotten more money for less performance in the past few years than the Bills’ Shawne Merriman. What Mayock didn’t do was weigh in some questionable play-calling and the conservative decision of Bills Coach Chan Gailey to punt from the Dolphins’ 36-yard line late in the game. In his post-game interview, Gailey even criticized himself for perhaps being too conservative.

5. I’m surprised more people didn’t watch on WBBZ when you consider it showed the game about a second earlier than The NFL Network did on cable. I’m no technology expert, but I’m told “it might have something to do with how Time Warner processed the satellite signal.” Whatever that means.

6. After watching the Dolphins rookie quarterback Ryan Tannehill struggle, do Bills fans really want the team to use a No. 1 draft choice next April on a rookie franchise quarterback and suffer through his growing pains for a few seasons?

7. The NFL Network’s Deion Sanders looked ridiculous wearing winter gear on its outdoor set even before the Bills’ C.J. Spiller wore his shirt-sleeve uniform to a post-game interview. It was about 32 degrees, not below zero as Sanders and fellow analyst Marshall Faulk made it look like. Give Michael Irvin props for manning up in a suit and not piling on about how cold it supposedly was here. Even play-by-play man Brad Nessler played into the cold narrative, calling Bills fans “hearty souls” in the opening. Guys, come back in late December and then you’ll see “hearty souls.” As Bills quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick said in a post-game interview “this is beautiful weather here in November.”

8. Mayock and the other NFL Network guys were much quicker to accept the excuse by the Bills Mario Williams that his injured wrist was responsible for his poor early season than Bills fans and columnists have been. However, Mayock seemed to be a much bigger fan of Kyle Williams than Mario.

9. Nessler had a solid game, but he surely had some Bills fans shaking their head when he said the team had committed its highest number of penalties in the game. Nessler apparently didn’t watch the Bills loss to New England in which they had a record number of penalties that would have been hard to beat.

10. Buffalo women were spared the indignity of having a national TV audience hear that Miami’s Reggie Bush didn’t want to see anyone of them topless. Neither Nessler nor Mayock mentioned Reggie’s silly radio remark.


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9 responses to "A Top 10 Assessment of Bills Game"

  1. Rob says:

    As a dotted line connection to the Bills, I’m surprised you didn’t mention anything about the passing of Jeff Kaye. If I remember didn’t you label him “Fan” to go along with Van and Stan when they did the Bills games back in the day? A great success story and part of a legendary group of broadcaster back in the day.

    • alanp says:

      That’s for another day. But you have a great memory. The column you refer to was headlined “Van, Stan and Fan.” Jeff had a classic voice, as exemplified by being named one of the voices of NFL Films. Perhaps the best all-time in Buffalo, but surely in the Top 2 or Top 3 all-time. However, he was miscast as a game analyst.

  2. Tom says:

    6. YES. You will never win a Super Bowl without one, and that’s the goal.

  3. Larry says:

    I have to agree with your comment about Paul Peck it was great to hear him. He belongs back on tv he does a really good job with UB games. If Pagula ever decides to start a regional sports network he might be able to get Paul. Also it was cool to see the tiny tot of the kilowat.

  4. Kathy says:

    Did anyone else catch the sports segment on
    channel 4 on Thurs. night? With about a minute and a half left in the game, they cut away to Steve Vesey at the Ralph. He just about was mugged by at least four obnoxious “fans”. At one point, he could not even be heard, as these guys were right on top of him. They finally went back to the studio, but should have done it much sooner, imo.

  5. Rich R says:

    Maybe I’m missing something but isn’t WBBZ one of those channels you don’t get on basic cable unless you have a set-top box, like E! and some others they just switched. I didn’t hear any complaints but if that’s the case wouldn’t that have prevented lots of viewers from getting the game

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