Bills WR Evans clicking again with Losman back as starter Print
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Wednesday, 07 November 2007 14:15
NFL Headline News

 ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) -Receiver Lee Evans went out on a limb - going against popular opinion and his coach's decision - in favoring J.P. Losman as the starter after the Bills began their quarterback carousel earlier this season.
Turns out, Evans might have had a point, and he's backing it up with his performance.
Evans has been the biggest benefactor since Losman returned after Trent Edwards sprained his throwing hand in a 13-3 win at the New York Jets two weeks ago.
In the past five quarters with Losman running the plays, Evans has 11 catches for 269 yards and two touchdowns, bettering what he had in his first six games: 245 yards and no scores.
``I wouldn't call it a coincidence,'' Evans said Wednesday. ``We've certainly made some plays in the past.''
And nothing against Edwards, said Evans, who credited the rookie third-round pick for going 2-1 in three full starts before he was hurt.
Evans said he's more comfortable and has developed a better connection with Losman ever since the two arrived in Buffalo in 2004 as fellow first-round draft picks.
``When J.P.'s been in there, he takes chances with me,'' Evans said. ``I just try to make them pay off as much as possible. And to date, it's been working out right.''
Losman's 85-yard touchdown pass to Evans sealed the win against the Jets.
Their performance carried over in a 33-21 win over Cincinnati last weekend when Evans had nine catches for a season-best 165 yards and a touchdown. The two were particularly sharp in the clutch with seven of Evans' receptions producing first downs, and four coming in third-down situations.
``For some reason, we just keep hooking up,'' said Losman, who initially lost his job to Edwards after spraining his left knee against New England in Week 3. ``We've always been comfortable with each other, somehow able to read each other.''
As for Evans voicing his support after the team turned to Edwards, Losman said: ``It means a lot. We've been through a lot together. ... It was good to see that I came through for him.''
The chemistry will continue for at least one more game after coach Dick Jauron announced Losman will get his second straight start when Buffalo (4-4) travels to play at Miami (0-8) on Sunday.
Edwards was limited in practice Wednesday by some soreness in his right hand.
Jauron described Losman's performance the past two games as ``outstanding,'' but wouldn't go beyond this weekend in naming his starter. Jauron reiterated that the Bills have confidence in both players, and the starting job will be based on performance.
Quarterback debates aside, Evans is re-emerging as the Bills' go-to deep threat, a role he established last year in finishing sixth in the NFL with 1,292 yards receiving and a team-high eight touchdowns. That included a 24-21 win at Houston on Nov. 19, when Evans had a team-record 265 yards receiving and scored twice.
He put up those numbers with Losman taking every snap in his first full season as starter.
Evans struggles to pinpoint exactly what makes him and Losman so compatible, except to say, ``We're similar types of people.''
Doesn't matter that Evans grew up in Ohio and Losman in southern California, or that Evans played at Wisconsin and Losman at Tulane.
``Yeah, different walks of life,'' Evans said, acknowledging their worlds-apart backgrounds. ``But you can, just as people, be similar in certain ways.''
Evans said he spoke up on behalf of Losman because he didn't want the offense to take a step back once Losman was healthy to play. Evans was concerned because the unit had spent the entire offseason attempting to build off of last year's second-half surge with plays suited to Losman's strengths as a mobile and strong-armed passer.
``With Trent going in, he was doing a great job,'' Evans said. ``But as far as leading the team to get to where we felt we could get to, J.P. was the man who did it last year. So why would you change your mind-set this year? It's his offense to run.''
 

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