Posts Tagged ‘AFC East’

Buffalo Bills vs. New England Patriots: Week 17 Live Game Thread

Sunday, December 29th, 2013

LeGarrette Blount gashed the Bills for 334 total yards Sunday. (Photo: Winslow Townson — USA Today Sports)

BBD Assistant Editor: Ryan Talbot

Final Thoughts:

Three hundred thirty-four yards. How on Earth does a professional football team give up 334 yards to one player? It’s difficult, but the Bills pulled off the feat on Sunday. Was it a squirmy player like Julian Edelman? No. What about a jack of all trades like Shane Vereen? Not him either.

LeGarrette Blount, a 250-pound bruising running back, was the man who accounted for the yards. Blount had 24 carries for 189 yards and two touchdowns. He also accounted for 145 yards on two kick returns Sunday.

It’s inexcusable regardless of the elements. For as much praise as defensive coordinator Mike Pettine has received, he also needs to be held accountable for the rushing yards his defense gave up this season. Overall, Pettine did more good than bad, but the run defense needs to be looked at and upgraded in the offseason.

As for the kickoff returns, that falls on special teams coordinator Danny Crossman. When the Bills hired Crossman, I remember Lions fans jumping for joy. After one season, I see why. Marrone’s hiring of Crossman was by far his worst hire. Marrone and Crossman might be friends, but there is no reason for Crossman to return in 2014.

The game itself wasn’t great for the Bills, but they did themselves no favors. The Patriots fumbled the ball four times on Sunday and each time New England recovered the ball.

Offensively, mistakes did the Bills in.

Thad Lewis did a nice job against the Patriots, especially considering the elements. He completed 16-of-29 passes for 247 yards and one touchdown. His biggest gaffes were an early fumble and a bad quarterback sneak. The Bills did score a field goal after the fumble, so Lewis only had one really costly play.

Spiller and Jackson accounted for 165 yards and a touchdown on the ground for the Bills.

Mistakes by Buffalo’s wide receivers and tight ends were most costly for the Bills offense on Sunday. Scott Chandler had a big drop in the first quarter that would have converted a first down and put the Bills in field goal range. T.J. Graham, the team’s leading receiver on Sunday, had a pass bounce off of his mid-section on a 4th and 2 play.

In the offseason, Doug Marrone and Nathaniel Hackett need to work on Buffalo’s red zone offense. The team was held to far too many field goals this season.

The 2013 Bills season is in the books with another 6-10 record. The team had a strong draft and made some good moves in free agency and through its trade with the Indianapolis Colts for outside linebacker Jerry Hughes. If the team can repeat that process in 2014, the Bills have a chance to emerge as a playoff contender.

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Buffalo Bills Play Best Football of the Season in Week 16 Win vs. Miami Dolphins

Sunday, December 22nd, 2013

Kyle Williams and the Buffalo Bills defense had seven sacks Sunday. (Photo: Kevin Hoffman — USA Today Sports)

BBD Editor: Dan Hope

For the most part, everything seemed to be in the Miami Dolphins’ favor going into their Week 16 game Sunday against the Buffalo Bills. Coming off a Week 15 victory against the New England Patriots, the Dolphins were 8-6 and in serious contention for an AFC playoff spot. The Bills, meanwhile, were 5-9, had been eliminated from AFC playoff contention in Week 15 and game into the game without three key injured starters, including starting quarterback EJ Manuel.

The Bills and backup quarterback Thad Lewis, however, had the Dolphins’ number this season. In Week 7, while Manuel was sidelined with an LCL sprain in his right knee, Lewis got his first career win as an NFL starting quarterback when Buffalo clawed out a 23-21 victory over the Dolphins in Miami. On Sunday, with Lewis back in the lineup again and Manuel sidelined with a left knee sprain, the Bills had an absolutely dominant effort, a 19-0 shutout in their final home game of the season.

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First Downs and Flags: Buffalo Bills Bounce Back vs. Division Rival New York Jets

Monday, November 18th, 2013

Marquise Goodwin continued to perform well as the Buffalo Bills passing offense had one of his best games of the season Sunday. (Photo: Timothy T. Ludwig — USA Today Sports)

BBD Staff Writer: John Maher

The Buffalo Bills went into Sunday’s game against the New York Jets coming off their worst showing of the season in a Week 10 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers. After nothing had worked well against the Steelers for the Bills offense and quarterback EJ Manuel, all eyes were on the quarterback and the Bills offense as it was set to go against a strong New York Jets defense in the Bills’ first AFC East rematch of the season.

The Jets beat the Bills 27-20 in Week 3, but Sunday’s game went much differently, with the Bills blowing the Jets out for a 37-14 victory. Things did not look good for Manuel in the days leading up to the game as the Bills’ top two receivers, Robert Woods and Stevie Johnson, were ruled out with injuries. This left second-year T.J. Graham, rookie Marquise Goodwin, inexperienced Chris Hogan and underused Marcus Easley to serve as Buffalo’s receiving corps Sunday.

Even with those injuries and swirling gusts at Ralph Wilson Stadium, the Bills scored their highest point total of the season Sunday.

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Buffalo Bills vs. New York Jets: Week 11 Live Game Thread

Sunday, November 17th, 2013

C.J. Spiller and Fred Jackson may have a heavy workload based upon the forecast for today’s game. (Photo: USA Today Sports Images)

BBD Assistant Editor: Ryan Talbot

The Buffalo Bills dominated the New York Jets on Sunday to improve to 4-7 as they enter their bye week.

Buffalo’s defense gave Geno Smith nightmares on Sunday and the Jets quarterback finished the day 8 for 23 for 103 yards and three interceptions.

Jairus Byrd recorded two of the interceptions and Da’Norris Searcy returned Smith’s third interception for a touchdown.

Smith also lost a fumble after getting sacked by Kyle Williams. The Bills sacked the Geno Smith four times on Sunday and pressured him multiple times. It was Buffalo’s best defensive performance of the season.

Offensively, the Bills struggled to move the ball on the ground with their running backs. Fred Jackson led the team with 34 yards on 12 carries. C.J. Spiller only had 6 yards on 13 carries.

Whereas the Bills struggled on the ground, EJ Manuel found himself having his best game as a pro. He went 20 of 28 on the day for 245 yards and two touchdowns. Manuel was accurate all day and had deep passes go for touchdowns to T.J. Graham and Marquise Goodwin. The pass to Graham was underthrown, but T.J. stopped and made a great play on the ball. Goodwin’s catch was perfectly thrown and caught in stride by the speedy receiver.

Buffalo also had contributions on the ground or in the passing game from Frank Summers, Scott Chandler and Chris Hogan.

On special teams, Dan Carpenter was excellent kicking in tough conditions. Carpenter went 3 for 3 on kicks of 40 yards or more. Brian Moorman wasn’t as great punting averaging 33.3 yards on six punts. His average was brought down by a two yard punt after Moorman dropped a snap.

The Bills may not have been perfect on Sunday, but it was pretty close. The Bills enter their bye week 4-7 and 2-2 in the AFC East.

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Week 11 Rematch: Buffalo Bills Take on New York Jets At Home

Saturday, November 16th, 2013

The Bills will be hoping EJ Manuel can get his game back on track in Buffalo’s Week 11 rematch with the New York Jets. (Photo: Anthony Gruppuso — USA Today Sports)

BBD Staff Writer: Eric Samulski

Laying a dud against in a 23-10 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers wasn’t exactly the momentum the Buffalo Bills were hoping to seize after almost toppling the best team in the league and getting their quarterback healthy again. Nonetheless, the Bills travel back home in Week 11, where they have had more success this season, to take on the division rival New York Jets.

Standing at 3-7, any chance at a playoff berth is all but lost for Buffalo, but with so many young players on the roster, each game continues to prove valuable for its development and the team’s future success. The question beyond that is, how will the team respond to their rookie head coach once the playoffs are firmly out of sight?

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