Monday, October 15, 2012

Bills ride waves of emotion in 'gut check' victory


The Buffalo Bills rode waves of emotion in the final minutes of their road bout with the Arizona Cardinals Sunday, but they ultimately left feeling pretty good after a 19-16 overtime victory.

Over the course of the final seven minutes of regulation and overtime, Buffalo got two crucial interceptions from defensive back Jairus Byrd and saw opposing kicker Jay Feely make a 61-yard field goal but have a 38-yarder tipped and hit the left upright.

"There are highs and lows," Bills coach Chan Gailey told reporters after the game. "As football teams, you have to handle highs and lows not only in a game but in a season. You just keep fighting. That was impressive by our football team."

Byrd picked off Kevin Kolb with just over six minutes left in the fourth quarter as the Bills were nursing a 3-point lead. Buffalo, however, was unable to extend the margin, and Feely was good on the crazy-long kick with just over a minute to go. The Cardinals, however, couldn't put the game away on the shorter kick as time expired.

"You can't explain the emotions. There is just no way," Gailey said. "You don't think there is any way a guy is going to make a 61-yarder, and then you think for sure he is going to make the short one and he doesn't."

Byrd intercepted John Skelton, who came in to replace the injured Kolb, in overtime and returned the ball deep into Arizona territory. A couple plays later, Buffalo kicker Rian Lindell easily booted in a 25-yard field goal to help Buffalo improve to 3-3 and in a four-way tie (divisional tiebreakers aside) for the AFC East lead.

"My take on the game was it was a gut check," Gailey said. "I'm impressed with the way our team fought through adversity. The first play of the game, we fumbled the ball. We played great red zone defense. We didn't play as consistent on offense but did enough good things in all areas to win the game on the road against a good football team.

"It wasn't pretty at times, but it was a gut check and that may go a long way for our football team."

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