Wednesday, September 11, 2013
Spiller trying to meet high expectations
By Mike Rodak
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- Sunday's loss was a disappointing start to a season full of high expectations for Buffalo Bills running back C.J. Spiller.
All week, the New England Patriots talked about the importance of stopping Spiller, and they followed through. On 22 touches -- 17 carries and five receptions -- Spiller managed just 55 yards, an average of 2.5 yards per touch.
To Spiller, it was just a taste of what teams will try to do against him this season.
"Now I kind of get a feel for what Adrian Peterson faces week in and week out," Spiller said Wednesday. "When teams come in and stack the box, that's a sign of respect."
Spiller said he reverted to "old habits" on Sunday, giving him less of a chance to succeed against a Patriots defense that ranked ninth in the NFL against the run last season.
"(I) just tried to make too many plays," Spiller said. "I was forcing instead of just letting that big play come, I was looking for that big play each time. It hurt me. Now I know how to put it behind me. I'll just start taking what they give me."
In addition to fumbling on his second carry of the game, Spiller also said he was frustrated by not being able to beat a safety after clearing the first level of the defense.
"I let the safety tackle me one-on-one. I got frustrated right there in that moment. I feel like I should win that battle every time. My offensive line did a great job of getting me to the secondary. They expect me to win and I didn't," Spiller said. "I feel like I should win that battle. If they're blocking their tails off, everybody else is doing their job, it's my job to make those guys miss and turn that into a big gain."
Spiller said he let his frustration "linger on too much," but looks to focus on putting his struggles in the opener behind him.
"I knew going into the game what their focus was going to be, and I think it's going to be like that for the rest of the year. The main thing for me is, I can't get frustrated. I have to keep a smile on my face, good or bad play," he said. "Move on, and just take what they give me. Sunday showed a bad example of too much frustration and letting them kind of dictate how I play."
With Spiller struggling, the Bills turned to Fred Jackson, who was noticeably more effective against the Patriots defense. However, the Bills got little help from their wide receivers, who finished with collectively just five catches in the game.
"If they're going to come up and stack the box and put extra guys in there, we just need our other playmakers to step up and make plays," Spiller said. "I have no problem with other guys making plays. Eventually it's going to loosen up. If I can take those early on, eventually those big ones will come."