1. How Josh Norman is helping small businesses hurt by COVID-19
Bills fans know Josh Norman for his helping hand in the community. Before Norman even started practicing with the Bills, he was in Buffalo advocating to make his new home a better place. Even though Norman's season has been riddled with injuries, he hasn't stopped trying to make an impact in Buffalo.
Norman appeared at a press conference on Tuesday, Dec. 1 where he shared his plan to help small businesses that have been impacted by COVID-19. The corner is partnering with Mayor Byron Brown to create Buffalo Business Blitz, an initiative to provide support to Buffalo-area businesses. Norman is giving $25,000 of his own money to provide grants of up to $2,500 each to small businesses impacted by COVID-19 restrictions this holiday season.
"Supporting small businesses is critical right now," Norman said. "I didn't want to just cut a check and walk away. I wanted to do something that would make a difference for the small business owners who are hurting the most right now. I'm calling on local business leaders and philanthropists to add to our donation so we can support as many small businesses as possible. Also to Bills Mafia, I've seen what you are capable of. I want you to give what you can because without these small businesses, Buffalo is just not the same secret."
Donations will be collected by Josh Norman's not-for-profit foundation Starz24. Interested small business owners can visit www.starz24.org to receiver more information. Donations can be made by visiting www.startz24.org. Please donate by December 26th. More information on eligibility will be available by signing up online and funds will be disbursed throughout January, 2021.
2. 49ers will be without two key players on Monday
San Francisco head coach Kyle Shanahan met with media on Tuesday where he shared his hopes to get two players back by the end of the season. Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo and tight end George Kittle were unlikely to return in Week 13, but it is now official. Garoppolo is out with a high ankle sprain he re-aggravated in Week 8, and Kittle fractured his foot in Week 7. The 49ers currently have 15 players on injured reserve, two of which, cornerback Jamar Taylor and cornerback Ken Webster, were placed on IR on Tuesday.
"I'm holding out hope for Jimmy for the last couple weeks, same with Kittle," Shanahan said. "I think they're in a similar boat with that. It's not guaranteed, it's how they react over the next couple of weeks. They are just starting to get into it and get on the field, not with us but on their own."
According to Shanahan the 49ers are expected to see wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk, defensive lineman D.J. Jones and defensive lineman Jordan Willis activated off of the Reserve/COVID-19 list this week.
3. Two Bills players who led the charge in Week 12's win
The Bills defense came alive in the second half of the Chargers game to help solidify the 27-17 win. Cornerback Tre'Davious White came up with an interception on third down with five minutes left in the game when his team needed it the most. Bills defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier said linebacker Tremaine Edmunds and defensive end Jerry Hughes led the charge in the fourth quarter.
"I think for us it starts with Tremaine and Jerry Hughes," Frazier explained. "Those are probably the guys that really set the temperament for our defense and they have been very resilient throughout the season. We've had some moments where things didn't look great, but they just continued to fight, and it's really a mirror image of Tremaine's demeanor and the fire that Jerry brings to the defense.
"That's probably where that comes from, that resiliency along with that steely nerves that you have to have in those moments where you don't blink. You can see those guys come together with our linebackers coach, Bob Babich, right before going on the field any time there's a sudden change situation. They huddle up, Tremaine gives them a word, Jerry might give them a word, and they go out and they just play it one play at a time. To their credit yesterday, those were huge moments for us because the game was in the balance."