Buffalo Bills wide receiver Stevie Johnson returned to the field Saturday. (Photo: Evan Habeeb — USA Today Sports)
BBD Staff Writer: Ryan Talbot
BBD Editor: Dan Hope
After watching Buffalo’s dress rehearsal, the Bills clearly need a lot of practice before “opening night.” There’s no way to sugarcoat this, Buffalo was outplayed in every aspect of the game in their 30-7 loss to the Redskins.
Offensively, the Bills passed for 79 yards against the Redskins. It’s time to pump the brakes on the Jeff Tuel for starting quarterback train. While the rookie has a great skill set, he was clearly in over his head against the Redskins.
Kevin Kolb’s day was much shorter as he only attempted four passes. Kolb deserves some credit for leading Buffalo to their only points of the game. Kolb showed some mobility against the Redskins, which unfortunately led to concussion-like symptoms. On the tail end of Kolb’s second run, a Redskins player connected with Kolb’s helmet. Buffalo will need to have either EJ Manuel or Kevin Kolb ready for Week 1 against the Patriots.
In the run game, C.J. Spiller scored the only touchdown of the game before making every Bills fan nervous. Spiller grabbed his knee after the play and needed medical attention. Luckily, he was declared “OK” by the team and even returned to the game.
The receiving game never really took off on Saturday afternoon as only six players caught a pass. Stevie Johnson led the way with four receptions for 28 yards.
Defensively, the team was sloppy against the run and pass. Buffalo struggled greatly in coverage on Saturday. The Redskins seemed to find their most success in the air through slant patterns. The entire secondary needs work and cannot have Jairus Byrd back soon enough. It’s rumored that Buffalo has entertained trade offers for Byrd, but after today’s game, the team should let inquiries for Byrd go to voicemail.
Sadly, the team fared even worse against the run. Buffalo gave up a total of 208 rush yards to the Redskins. Buffalo didn’t seem as aggressive on Saturday, but the performance is still very worrisome.
It is just the preseason, but today’s game showed us that there will certainly be some growing pains with such a young team.