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Sunday, November 1, 2009
Bills scrounging for offense

Posted by's Tim Graham

Terrell Owens had his best day as a Buffalo Bills.

Five catches for 39 yards. But he also had a 29-yard run for a touchdown.

That's the way it had to be for the stalled-out Bills offense in a 31-10 loss to the Houston Texans in Ralph Wilson Stadium.
 AP Photo/Dean Duprey
 The Bills continued to struggle on offense despite Terrell Owens' 29-yard run for a score.

The Bills were forced to trick their way for yardage. Owens' end around was their only touchdown. Late in the game, Bills coach Dick Jauron used the punt unit as an offensive surrogate. The fake failed and gave the Texans a short field.

"The reason why, clearly, we tried to fake it just because we weren’t getting anything done," Jauron explained.

In other words, he wanted to give his punt unit a shot at getting yards the offense couldn't. The play resulted in a 3-yard loss for Justin Jenkins.

The Bills gained 204 total yards -- hey, almost twice as many as the Miami Dolphins! -- but could hold onto the ball for only 20:52. They converted only two of their 10 third downs. Four of their 11 possessions were three-and-outs, not counting the failed fake punt.

"I can honestly say we work hard in practice, but what we show out on the field is not indicative of what we’re doing in practice," Owens said. "As an offense we’re not doing what we're supposed to do, especially with the weapons we have in the backfield with [Marshawn] Lynch and [Fred] Jackson and me, [Lee] Evans and [Josh] Reed. We're just not getting it done on the offensive side of the ball, period.

At least the Bills got the ball to Owens on Sunday.

His five catches are the most he's had for Buffalo. But he had a bobble in the end zone and miscommunicated with Ryan Fitzpatrick on what turned into a Texans interception.

He's on pace to finish with 46 receptions for 562 yards and two touchdowns. That would be his worst season since he was a rookie in 1996.

"In order for us to move the ball, we need to get first downs, and we're not converting on any of those," Owens said. "When you're going three and out every time and you need the defense to make a play, it's tough because they're spent.

"Offensively, we need to take it personally to the point of taking pride in everything we do. That's receivers catching and blocking, the O-line blocking and allowing the quarterback to drop back and get into his reads.

"We're not getting it done offensively, and that's the key thing. The defense has shut down a lot of offenses that can put big numbers on the board. You look at the scores can be misleading we’ve put the defenses back against the wall."