Bills’ Holcomb stuck in a no-win situation

By Connor Byrne  |   Thursday, December 15, 2005  |  Comments( 0 )

Buffalo Bills
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Wednesday, it was announced by Buffalo Bills head coach Mike Mularkey that the team would be forced to start Kelly Holcomb at quarterback this week. Buffalo's starter, J.P. Losman, hurt his shoulder in Sunday's 35-7 loss to the New England Patriots and has been unable to practice this week. Perhaps it would be different if the Bills' matchup with the Denver Broncos was on Sunday instead of Saturday.

Either way you slice it, this is a no-win situation for Holcomb and the Bills. Does it really matter if Holcomb plays well against Denver? No, he's not the future and doesn't need to develop. What if the team pulls the huge upset against the Broncos and Holcomb plays great? That's even worse. It would be a meaningless victory for a 4-9 football team that has already been mathematically eliminated from playoff contention. As a matter of fact, Bills fans would probably start some sort of anti-Holcomb mutiny since it would cost the team a potential top five pick in next April's draft.

The loss of Losman for Saturday's game has the potential to harm the revenue streaming in at One Bills Drive. At 4-9, the only remaining reason for fans to watch the team is so they can see how the first-year starter's development is coming along. Since that is out of the picture for this week, Bills' ticket-holders may opt to stay home or go pursue other interests. Why does this hurt things at One Bills Drive? It stymies the expensive beer sales, food sales, and merchandising sales that would take place. Less people showing up means that less goods will be purchased. No need to feel sympathy for the Bills' organization. They've sold out every single one of their home games despite their awful place in the standings. The underachievement of the team clearly hasn't driven the fans away. All it's done is disgust them, yet keep them coming back for even more.

As for a Bills victory being meaningless, Mularkey would probably disagree with me since he needs Holcomb and the Bills to come out fighting in this game. His job is on the line and another flat performance might lead to his demise with the Bills' organization. The same exact sentiment can be uttered for Bills President and GM, Tom Donahoe. Both men need their team to perform admirably, especially since the game will be seen by a national audience on ESPN.

If and when you watch Holcomb and the Bills this weekend, remember this article. If Holcomb leads the team to an upset over 10-3 Denver, and there's a mutiny by angry Bills fans seeking a high pick in the 2006 draft, don't say I didn't warn you. And Kelly, if you read this, watch your back. It might be best if you come out on Saturday and "accidentally" throw an interception or two. Otherwise, you could cost the team a solid prospect such as Haloti Ngata, Mario Williams, or A.J. Hawk.

Connor Byrne can be reached at
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