Bills ready to move forward
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- Buffalo Bills coach Mike Mularkey admitted Friday that wide receiver Eric Moulds was suspended for "conduct detrimental to our team."
After one of the most tumultuous weeks in Bills history, in which the Pro Bowl receiver was suspended without pay by team owner Ralph Wilson, Mularkey finally spoke to reporters about Moulds for the first time this week.
"I'm not going to elaborate on the reasons why," Mularkey said. "I know it's an interest to the fans, but on behalf of Eric and our team, I don't think it benefits anybody talking about this thing anymore. The issue has been settled, we're focusing on the Patriots, and Eric will be back here on Monday."
Mularkey said he isn't worried that the team's preparation for Sunday's game against New England was hampered by this week's events.
"We had three real good days," he said.
Sam Aiken, who has excelled in recent weeks on special teams, will take Moulds' place. Aiken has three catches this season.
"It's a great chance," Mularkey said. "His work ethic is tremendous. I'm looking forward to seeing what he can do."
Moulds leads Buffalo with 54 catches for 511 yards. His absence doesn't bode well for a sputtering passing offense that ranks 29th in the NFL.
"We have to move forward, regardless of the circumstances," defensive end Chris Kelsay said. "The organization upstairs ... let them take care of personnel problems. We as teammates and players on this team, for this organization, we have to keep our focus on the field."
After a meeting with Wilson and Mularkey on Thursday, Moulds told the Buffalo News the owner made him feel wanted even after the suspension was handed down.
"The thing he told me is that he's in my corner and he appreciates everything that I've done over the past 10 years," Moulds told the newspaper. "He said I'm one of the players that he knows goes out and plays every play. For him to say that, it meant more to me than anything."
It is believed that Moulds, a 10-year veteran, was suspended because of a sideline confrontation with receivers coach Tyke Tolbert in Buffalo's bitter 24-23 loss on Sunday in Miami.
Moulds' personal adviser, Greg Johnson, said the dispute occurred when Moulds left the field after experiencing pain in his Achilles' tendon. Moulds wanted to have the tendon examined by a trainer when Tolbert asked Moulds to get back on the field, Johnson said. Moulds declined and was benched for most of the final three quarters.