How Bills Treat Players Who Perform is Mind Boggling
As we've all seen or heard by now, Fred Jackson is unhappy with his place on the Bills and feels under-appreciated and under-utilized. While the situation has been somewhat resolved, we feel as though Bills' players have a right to be angry.
The past decade has been marked by the revolving door of both players, coaches , and management. Some, well I'd say most moves have come to the dismay of fans and players alike. What bothers me is the same old charade that comes with a new coaching staff. Since 2000, the Bills have had 4 completely different coaching staffs. When a new staff comes in, they seem to rid themselves of the players whom the "previous regime" drafted or acquired so they can bring "their kind of guys" in.
Since 2000, the Bills have had 14 1st round draft picks (they had 2 first round picks in 2004 & 2006). Guess how many of those 1st round picks are still on the team? 4. That's right, Marcell Dareus, C.J Spiller, Eric Wood, and Leodis Mckelvin are all that remain from a list that includes names like Aaron Maybin, Marshawn Lynch, Lee Evans, Donte Whitner, J.P Losman, Willis McGahee, Nate Clements, and others. The only picks that remain are those made by the present coaching staff, all others have been purged. The latest casuality to this seemingly endless cycle was Lee Evans, one of the only remnants of the Mike Mularkey days. Is the player we select with the fourth round pick we received in exchange for Evans going to turn out to be a good value? Probably not. The Bills need(ed) Evans, and that fourth round pick won't help us at all right now. The only thing that trade did was complete the cycle for the coaching staff, they have their own wide receivers now. We must ask, is Fred Jackson next?
Jackson made his first start with the Bills in 2007 after coming to the team as an undrafted college free agent. He's been a fan favorite and one of the best players on an annually sub-par team. We were all shocked when the Bills selected C.J. Spiller with their first round pick in 2010, but probably not as shocked as Jackson. After beating out Marshawn Lynch for the staring running back job, he rightfully believed he was the starter going forward. The question is, should the fans or Jackson have been shocked? Like I have been saying throughout this rant, coaching staffs want players whom they select and groom. You better believe C.J Spiller will be given every opportunity in the world to win the starting job even though Jackson will most likely deserve it. Before this season, who would have even murmured the possibility of Evans being traded? What about Thurman, Flutie, Winfield, Clements, and Pat Williams, even Takeo Spikes, London Fletcher, and Jason Peters? I'd hate to see Jackson go, but I won't be surprised if it happened, because it's always been like this.
Check out some of Jackson's highlights from previous years: