Lynch Makes The Bills Dangerous

Marshawn Lynch's impact on the 2007 Buffalo Bills is having a bigger impact than anyone expected. It's not that Lynch was an unknown out of a small school, but few expected him to be this good this soon.

Marshawn Lynch's touchdown pass to tight end Robert Royal in Sunday's 33-21 victory over Cincinnati was the first by a Bills halfback in 26 years. As long as Lynch is around, don't expect another 26 years to pass.

"It's certainly not a new play in the league but it generally works if you're running the ball effectively and you have someone that they fear in the run game who can throw it, and he throws it pretty well," coach Dick Jauron said.

Trailing 21-19 in the fourth quarter, the Bills took over at the Cincinnati 32-yard line and called six consecutive runs for Lynch. That set up a second down at the 8-yard line.

Again, Lynch got the ball moving to his right. But instead of continuing on the sweep, the rookie out of Cal pulled up and tossed a perfect spiral into the hands of Royal.

It was just the fifth successful option pass in club history and first since Joe Cribbs threw to Curtis Brown against Dallas on Nov. 9, 1981.

"It's high school, pitch-and-catch with Robert Royal," said Lynch, who in addition to throwing his first NFL touchdown pass, also had his first career 100-yard game, finishing with 153 yards on 29 carries.

"I just made sure I got that tight spot around the ball. We practiced it so I got a couple of reps during the week, so I just wanted to execute on that play."

Ever since draft day, fans and media were waiting for Lynch to show off his arm. At Cal, he completed three of four passes for 55 yards and two touchdowns. He also played some quarterback in high school in Oakland.

"I can air it out," he said with a smile when asked if he can throw the deep ball.

He probably can, but the Bills still like him as a running back first. Lynch recorded his first breakout run against Cincinnati, slipping free from two Bengals defenders to turn a negative carry into a 56-yard touchdown sprint down the right sideline that sealed Buffalo's third consecutive victory with 2:22 left.

Lynch's linemen have been waiting to spring him.

"We were trying to run the clock out and get first downs," center Melvin Fowler said. "That touchdown run by Marshawn was amazing and it's exactly what we needed at that time."

PLAYER NEWS:

--QB J.P. Losman's 295 yards passing in Sunday's win over Cincinnati moved him past the 5,000-yard career mark. He's seventh on Buffalo's career list, 1,200 yards behind Dennis Shaw (6,286). Losman will get the start Sunday in Miami with rookie Trent Edwards still recovering from a severely sprained throwing wrist.
--QB Trent Edwards, who is 3-1 as a starter, continues to recover from a sprained right throwing wrist. The swelling has subsided but it's still not certain if he'll be able to participate in practice on Wednesday and if he can, how many repetitions he'll get. J.P. Losman has already been named the starter for Sunday's game.
--RB Marshawn Lynch, who has rushed for 690 yards and five TDs through eight games, is on pace to break the team's single-season rushing record by a rookie of 1,185 yards set by Joe Cribbs in 1980. He's averaging 19 carries per game.
--RB Anthony Thomas returned to the lineup after suffering an eye injury and sitting out one game, catching one pass for 11 yards in last Sunday's win over Cincinnati.
--HB Derek Schouman, who has been getting more playing time each week, tweaked an ankle in Sunday's win. His condition will be updated Wednesday.
--TE Robert Royal's 8-yard TD catch from RB Marshawn Lynch against Cincinnati gave him nine for his career. He has caught TDs from four different players.
--WR Lee Evans has caught fire and figures to stay hot as long as J.P. Losman is at quarterback. His 165-yard game against Cincinnati followed a 138-yard game against the Jets, the first time since Peerless Price in 2002 that a Bills receiver posted consecutive 100-yard games.
--WR Josh Reed, who finished with six catches for 55 yards against Cincinnati, topped the 200-catch milestone. He has 203 career catches, 12th on the Bills' all-time list. He has a reception in 71 of his 80 career games.
--WR/PR Roscoe Parrish suffered a thigh contusion in the first half of last Sunday's win over Cincinnati and did not return. His status for this week's game at Miami will be updated on Wednesday.
--PK Rian Lindell has converted all 141 extra points with Buffalo and is sixth in NFL history overall with 237 made without missing. His 4-for-4 day on field goals was the sixth time he has made at least four field goals in one game.
--CB Jabari Greer recorded his first NFL forced fumble, jarring the ball loose from Bengals WR Chad Johnson in the second quarter. The ball rolled out of bounds.
--CB Kiwaukee Thomas recorded his first NFL interception, snuffing out the Bengals' final drive last Sunday and sealing Buffalo's third consecutive win. Eight different Bills have intercepted a pass this season.


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