In my Buffalo Bills weekly report cards, I have stressed the importance of Fred Jackson and C.J. Spiller touching the ball. The message is simple: Hand them the ball or throw it to them. Either way, the Bills can be successful.
But let's be honest. This is more about C.J. Spiller. He is, after all, one of the most explosive players in the NFL. Entering Sunday, he had a 6.6 yards per carry average. The first two weeks of the season, he rushed for 169 yards and 123 yards, respectively.
Spiller is, arguably, the Bills' best weapon.
Spiller's problem is he doesn't get the ball enough. Sunday was a great example. He touched the ball eight times, running the ball seven times for 37 yards and catching one pass for 15 yards.
Bills coach Chan Gailey apparently has Spiller on a tight leash. Spiller has 20-plus carries in one game this season (Nov. 15 against Miami) and he has 15-plus touches in seven games this season.
The Bills' record in those seven games? 4-3. Not bad, right?
Do the math. That means Buffalo is 1-5 when Spiller doesn't touch the ball at least 15 times.
Gailey needs to find a way to get Spiller the ball. The Bills can be a running team, but Gailey is trying to make them a passing team. They are not. He needs to mix the run and the pass. On Sunday, the Bills ran 58 plays. Jackson and Spiller had 16 combined carries. There's no reason for that. They need to get the ball more.
I tweeted Sunday that if Gailey returns as coach in 2013, Spiller should demand a trade. I was half-joking, but part of me thinks it would send a message. Spiller deserves better than this and he deserves to be the number one back. If Gailey doesn't want to feature him in Buffalo, he should be allowed to go to a team that needs him -- and will use him.