Sunday, September 25, 2011
Welcome to Ralph Wilson Stadium
By Mike Reiss
Chris Forsberg/ESPN Boston
A view from the press box at Ralph Wilson Stadium.
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- Welcome to Ralph Wilson Stadium, where the Patriots visit the Bills (1 p.m.):
Weather conditions. Temperatures are expected to be in the mid-70s by kickoff. There is cloud cover over the stadium, but no precipitation is expected, and there are light winds. Overall, conditions shouldn’t be a factor.
One more deactivation. The Patriots have already ruled safety Patrick Chung (right hand), Albert Haynesworth (back), receiver Taylor Price (hamstring), offensive tackle Sebastian Vollmer (back), tight end Aaron Hernandez (knee) and defensive lineman Mike Wright (concussion). They will have to downgrade one more player 90 minutes before kickoff.
Cheffers gets the call. Carl Cheffers is assigned to referee today’s game. Those who watched the documentary “Bill Belichick: A Football Life” will remember that Cheffers is the referee Bill Belichick joked with before the ’09 Patriots-Broncos game because he was in throwback referee gear.
Scouts in the house. The Bengals and Raiders are expected to have scouts here today. The Bills visit the Bengals next Sunday, while the Patriots visit the Raiders.
Television broadcast. The game is on CBS, with Marv Albert (play-by-play) and Rich Gannon (analysis) on the call.
Players who could see increased workload. With the Patriots dressing just one pure tight end, this is a game where receivers Chad Ochocinco (35 of 151 snaps played) and Julian Edelman (8 of 151) could see more time in spread packages. Also, linebacker Dane Fletcher (2 of 151 snaps as a fullback) could see more time on offense, possibly lining up as a tight end at times, similar to what we saw Heath Evans do in past years.