The Buffalo Bills' 16-13 overtime victory over the New York Jets seemed to take forever while it was being played. It ran just under 4 hours due in part to the overtime, but even then it just kind of dragged. If you felt the same, well, imagine the unadulterated joy of spending almost six hours going back through the game frame by frame. Ugh.
If I wasn't already ill, I think I would be now.
It took as long as it did to go through the game because there was more to watch for than usual. More importantly, there were several questions that the Bills tried to answer. Would the Bills finally face a defense that stacked the box to stop the run and short passes? How would the new right tackle perform in his first start? Would the Bills employ max-protect schemes? Would the guards do a better job of sustaining their blocks? Was that Corey McIntyre I saw actually blocking people?
Answers, along with the usual analysis and play-by-play breakdowns, after the jump.
Pass 1: Marshawn Lynch 8 yards
Demetrius Bell stuffed 92. Andy Levitre and Geoff Hangartner ("Hang" from this point forward) doubled Kris Jenkins. 91 drove Eric Wood back 3 yards but was stopped short of Trent Edwards. Shawn Nelson hung around waiting to help Jamon Meredith, but he wasn't needed. Meredith lost 99 as he stunted.
Run 1: Lynch 3 yards through the A gap
Bell got no drive on 92 and couldn't turn him out. Levitre doubled Jenkins with Hang. When Hang left to hit 52, Levitre got a 3 yard push on Jenkins. Wood took 91 3 yards then shielded him with his back before cutting him. Meredith tried to help with 91 but 91 had moved away from him. Meanwhile, Meredith ignored 99 who came down the line and made the tackle. Nelson kept 97 out of play and Derek Fine hand fought with 57.
Pass 2: Lee Evans 12 yards
Bell got under 92's pads when he tried to twist inside. Levitre kept Jenkins pretty much on the line of scrimmage (LOS). Hang and Wood doubled 91 and Meredith kept 99 on the edge of the LOS.
Run 2: Lynch 12 yards through right C gap
Bell got no push on 92. Levitre and Hang had an initial double team on Jenkins. When Hang peeled to get a piece of 52, Jenkins threw Levitre's right shoulder over and got inside of him. Levitre recovered and got under Jenkins' right shoulder to keep him out of the play. Wood turned 91 outside and sustained his block. Meredith kept 99 turned outside, though he did eventually get around and chase the play to be in on the tackle. Nelson dogged 97 until he fell then looked for someone else to hit. Fine popped 57 but didn't sustain his block.
Pass 3: Evans 7 yards against a blitz
Bell and Fine doubled 92, keeping him on the LOS. Levitre stopped Jenkins. Hang picked up 91 and Wood stopped 99. Meredith easily beat 97 to the corner.
Run 3: Fred Jackson 5 yards through the A gap against an 8 man front
92 shot inside of Bell, who got away with a hold. Levitre had Jenkins alone and got a 1 yard push, though he shed the block to make the tackle. Hang helped Wood with 91 before sliding off to pick up 52. Wood got into 91 and wouldn't let him turn to chase the play. Meredith put 99 down. Fine let 97 take himself out of the play with an upfield rush. Nelson did an okay job on 57 at the edge of the LOS.
Run 4: Jackson 6 yards through the left B gap
Bell helped with Jenkins until he fell over. Levitre pushed past Jenkins to lock up 52. Hang tried to turn 91 but couldn't. 91 shed the block to make the tackle. Wood pulled and blew 57 five yards out of the hold. Meredith helped 92 go upfield and out of the play. Fine did a good job keeping 99 on the edge of the LOS. Nelson kept 97 on a circular arc around the play.
Run 5: Lynch 1 yard through the left B gap against an 8-man front
Bell cut 50. Levitre stopped Jenkins from cutting inside of him and drove him 3 yards down the line. Hang chucked 91 then didn't sustain a block on 52 who made the tackle. Had Hang made that block only 36 and 25 were between Lynch and the goal line. At the least Lynch would have had a first down. Wood stood up 91. 91 was in on the tackle but only because Lynch had to redirect due to Hang's whiff on 52. Meredith turned 92 out and wouldn't let him get back inside. Nelson stoned 57 on the LOS. Fine withstood a great pop from 97 and kept him out of the play.
Run 6: Lynch 1 yard through the right B gap against an 8 man front - Wood flagged for hold
Bell locked up 50 and kept him on the LOS. Jenkins swam insid of Levitre's block to get in on the tackle. Hang helped with Jenkins then popped a filling 52. Wood got great drive on 91 and put him down without holding. His left hand was on 91's shoulder which is what a ref would point to. In any event, the Bills got away with a hold they did commit and nailed for one they didn't. Meredith ignored 92 and tried (and failed) to help with 92 - again ignoring a defensive lineman who made the tackle.
Pass 4: Terrell Owens 5 yard screen against a blitz (after Nelson false start)
Bell gave 50 a push inside and went out to block. Levitre didn't sell the screen at all so 50 got on his hip and was there to make the tackle. Hang blocked Jenkins. Wood was driven back by 58 and 99 got inside of Meredith to get after Edwards.
Stacked box: 3
Drive killer: Hangartner - the Bills got a FG
Pass 5: Nelson 2 yards (defense holding penalty on Owens)
Meredith got help from Fine with 93, which he didn't seem to need. Levitre and Hang doubled Jenkins. 92 popped Wood repeatedly back to Edwards. Meredith took 99 on a wide loop around the corner. Nelson waited for someone to blitz and wandered out into a pattern when no one did.
Run 7: Jackson no gain through the left C gap
Bell pulled wide and got a piece of 97 who Nelson was already blocking fairly well. Levitre didn't get the cut on Jenkins but slowed him down so much he might as well have. Hang pulled wide and bounced 93 then hit him again which sent him sprawling. Wood jumped inside of 99 and cut him. Meredith pulled but was too slow to catch anyone.
Pass 6: Owens incomplete against 5 man blitz (defense holding)
Bell didn't turn his head to see 36 blitzing. He instead helped Levitre, who was doing just fine with 93. Jenkins pushed Hang almost back to Edwards and got an assist from Wood. Meredith was popped hard enough by 99 to fall over if it weren't for a pile up that kept him upright. Fine picked up 99 when Meredith went down. Jackson did a poor job of picking up 33 who was doing a poor job of blitzing.
Run 8: Jackson -1 yard through right C gap
Bell tried to pull but couldn't get around the wash fast enough. Levitre cut 93 in slow motion. Hang and Wood doubled Jenkins and kept him well away from the play. Meredith pulled wide and missed cutting 52. Fine got outside of 92 and battled through the whistle. Nelson stuck with 97 fairly well but he got around Nelson and in on the tackle. TO killed the play with a pathetic non-block on 24.
Pass 7: Nelson 9 yards against a 5 man blitz
Bell beat 93 to the corner. Levitre took 91 around in an arc. Hang picked up a blitzing 57. Wood stuffed 52 on a delayed blitz and showed good awareness. Meredith danced with 92 on the edge of the LOS.
Pass 8: Sack -5 yards against a 7 man blitz
Bell and Levitre doubled 99. 93 got under Hang's left shoulder for the sack. Wood piled up 91 in the middle of the line. Meredith pushed 92 into the pileup Wood and 91 had created. Jackson popped 57 when he elevated. 97 got inside of Fine to get in on the tackle. Edwards was hurt on the play. The refs inexplicably failed to throw a flag for what was a blatant personal foul.
Stacked box: 0
Drive killed by: Hangartner allowing the sack and the refs for not flagging the defense on the hit
Run 9: Lynch 2 yards through the A gap
Bell turned 99 out and kept him there. Levitre turned 70 out but 70 shed his block and got in on the tackle. Hang and Wood doubled 77. Hang threw Jenkins down when he tried to circle around. Wood was too late to get more than a minor brush on 52 after leaving Jenkins. Meredith turned 79 away from the LOS and kept him out of the play. Fine hand fought with 57 and Nelson kept 97 on the edge of the LOS.
Pass 9: Incomplete one hop to Evans (Ryan Fitzpatrick's first pass of the season)
Bell beat 70 to the corner. Levitre and Hang doubled 70. Wood and Meredith doubled Jenkins and Fine hand fought with 99.
Pass: 10 Owens drop (would have been first down)
Bell pushed 93 inside. Levitre waited for a blitzer and hang picked up 99. Wood and Meredith doubled 92.
Stacked box: 0
Drive Killer: TO's drop
Pass 11: Incomplete overthrown and Owens double covered
Nelson help Bell with 93. Levitre and Hang doubled Jenkins. Wood stuffed 92. Fine and Meredith doubled 99.
Run 10: Lynch 9 yards through the A gap
Bell turned 93 out and put him down. Levitre chucked Jenkins and then shielded 52 away from the play. Hang turned Jenkins away from the run lane and then fell down. Wood jumped inside of 92 and left him for Meredith to handle. Wood was going to block 57 but 57 ran himself out of the play so Wood went back and gave Meredith a hand. McIntyre got enough of 99 to make him trip on the pile. Nelson did an okay job on 97 at the periphery of the play.
Run 11: Lynch -2 yards through the A gap
Bell went to the second level and hit 57. Levitre let Jenkins get inside of him for the tackle for loss (TFL), which killed the play and the drive. Hang hit 52 but didn't sustain the block. Wood did an okay job on 91. Meredith belted 92 out of the play and down the line. Fine picked up 97 and Nelson cleaned up 92.
Stacked box: 0
Drive Killer: Levitre
Run 12: Jackson 5 yards through the right C gap (Hang flagged for holding)
Bell stood up 79 on the edge of the LOS. Levitre picked up 52 at the second level and held him when 52 swam past him. Hang held 91 when he got around him. Wood and Meredith doubled 70 and blew him off the LOS. Fine got inside 99 and stayed there. Nelson blocked 97 6 yards down the field.
Pass 12: Nelson 25 yards
Bell and Levitre doubled 79. Hang was walked back to Fitz by 91. Wood stoned 70 and Meredith took 99 around the corner. It was simply an amazing catch by Nelson on what wasn't a terribly good pass.
Pass 13: Scramble for 7 yards
Everyone blocked like it was a run to the left. Fitzpatrick was going to throw to Fine but the defense was all over him. Buffalo really, really needs to retire this play.
Run 13: Jackson 2 yards through the A gap against an 8 man front
Bell got no real push on 79. Levitre went to the second level to lock up 52. Hang got a little push on 91, who was in on the tackle. Wood drove 70 3 yards and stayed inside of him. Meredith kept 99 on the edge of the LOS. Fine was destroyed on the play by 57. Nelson did an okay job on 97.
Run 14: QB sneak for 2 yards through the right C gap against an 8 man front (defense 12 men)
There was a general two yard push along the line. Fitzpatrick caught the defense with 13 men on the field. It was a heads up play.
Run 15: Jackson 4 yards through the A gap
Bell went to the second level and whiffed on a cut on 57. Levitre kept inside of Jenkins and wrestled him down after a 2 yard drive. Hang went to the second level and stuck to 52. Wood bulldogged 93 to the ground and Meredith almost tossed 50 down. 50 regained his balance but too late to impact the play. Fine tapped 97 and Nelson went Jim Leonhard hunting way downfield.
Pass 14: Incomplete against 5 man blitz
Bell might have been beaten by 97 if it was a slower to develop play. Levitre stopped 93. Hang and Wood doubled 91 and Meredith stopped 99's bull rush. Evans was open for a first down but the pass was simply terrible.
Pass 15: Incomplete against a 5 man blitz
50 shot right around Bell, who starting grabbing his shoulder and turning around in circles almost from the start of the play. Levitre looked for blitzers. Hang and Wood doubled 99. Meredith never turned his head to the right, where 3 blitzers were coming from. Jackson picked up 36 and Fine took care of 52. 25 got a free hit on Fitzpatrick.
Stacked box: 1
Drive Killer: Fitzpatrick
Pass 16: Owens 10 yards against a 6 man blitz
Bell pushed 79 inside to the pile. Levitre and Hang doubled 70, who still got a good push. Wood did an okay job on 92 and Meredith beat 97 to the corner. Nelson stopped a rush by 57. TO went out of bounds and the ref stops the clock with 2:16 left in the half. About 10 seconds after that the clock starts to wind again and reaches 2 minutes. First, the refs are idiots. There's no excuse for them to have let the clock wind. Second, where were Jauron and AVP? They should have been on the field getting those 16 seconds put back on the clock.
Pass 17: Incomplete against a 5 man blitz
Bell beat a DB to the corner. Levitre and Hang doubled 50. Wood and Hang blocked 99 but he split their double team to hit Fitzpatrick while throwing. Fitzpatrick couldn't step into the throw so it was low, which probably saved an INT.
Pass 18: Owens INC against 5 man blitz
Bell took 57 from 67 and stopped him. Levitre picked up a blitzer after handing off 57. Hang picked up a blitzing 97 and stayed aware. Wood took 99 on an arc and then cut him. Meredith abused 36. Jackson picked up 33 and Lynch had no one to block.
Pass 19: Screen to Owens for -2 yards
Bell was too slow to get ahead of the screen. Levitre didn't sell 50 on the screen but did cut him. Hang whiffed on a block on 21. Wood blocked 99 and Meredith loped along after the screen. Josh Reed's crappy block killed the play. Had Reed and Hang made their blocks TO likely had first down yardage and possibly more.
Stacked box: 0
Drive Killer: Hangartner and Reed
Run 16: Lynch 1 yard through the right C gap
Bell slanted inside of 93 and turned him out, a very athletic move. Levitre chucked 93 then went to the second level and got inside 57, walling him off from the play. Hang was driven back 2 yards by 91 which disrupted the play. Wood whiffed on 52 at the second level, who was in on the tackle. Meredith got no drive on 92 but did sustain his block. Nelson crossed the formation to cut the legs out from under 99. Fine did a poor job on 97, who circled around to get in on the tackle.
Pass 20: Fine 5 yards
Bell stopped 93. Levitre and Hang doubled 91. Wood stuffed 92 and Meredith beat 99 to the corner.
Pass 21: Owens drop against 5 man blitz
Bell had no one to block when 97 dropped into coverage. Levitre took 50 from Hang, who had picked him up from Wood. Wood and Hang then picked up a stunting 99. Meredith tried to follow 99 on his stunt instead of staying home. Lynch picked up a DB and Jackson picked up 52.
Stacked box: 0
Drive Killer: TO's drop
Pass 22: Scramble for 2 yards
Bell and Nelson doubled 92, though Nelson really wasn't terribly effective. Levitre and Hang doubled 91 and didn't let him off the LOS. Wood let 70 get under his right shoulder and almost a sack. He caused the scramble. Fine and Meredith doubled 50, who got nowhere near Fitzpatrick.
Run 17: Jackson 7 yards through the left C gap
Bell turned 93 inside to open the run lane. Levitre checked 91 then popped 52-but didn't sustain his block which let 52 get in on the tackle. Hang stood up 91. Wood went to the second level and got under 57's pads and pushed him 4 yards. Meredith rode 70 down when he tried to slant inside. Fine kept 50 out of the play. Nelson kept inside of 97 but 97 shed his block and was in on the tackle.
Run 18: QB sneak 1 yard through the A gap against an 8 man front
The line got a general 1 yard push. McIntyre got a piece of 50. It didn't help with the play but it did keep 50 from jumping on the pile.
Run 19: Owens 9 yards through the left C gap against an 8 man front
Bell went to the second level and tried to seal 57 inside but missed the block. Levitre turned 93 inside then kept dogging him until he was down. Hang checked 91 then jumped inside of 52 at the second level. Wood turned 91 and then cut him when he tried to chase the play. Meredith hit 70 for Fine and then was too slow to get to the second level. Fine kept 70 outside of the right hashmark. Nelson crossed the formation to pop 92 and open the run lane.
Run 20: Jackson 9 yards through the right B gap against an 8 man front
Bell got inside of 93 and cut him. Levitre couldn't get inside of 91 but slowed him down just enough. Hang went to the second level and fell down after tripping over 91's feet. Wood turned 92 inside and upfield to open the run lane. Meredith pulled wide and scared Leonhard into dropping all on his own. Nelson got inside of 50 and drove him to the sideline. Fine helped with 50 and got a piece of 57.
Run 21: Lynch 9 yards through the right C gap
93 got inside him but too late. Levitre chucked 91 and then got a piece of 52 at the second level. Hang stood up 91 at the center of the line until both of them were taken out by Scott and 99. Wood went to the second level and got enough of 57 to make him lose his balance. Fine hand fought with 97 and Nelson knocked 50 into the pile sealing the edge.
Pass 25: Incomplete overthrow to Evans
The entire line blocked like it was a run.
Run 22: Lynch -1 yard through the left C gap against an 8 man front
Bell and Levitre forced 93 down but clogged up the left side of the line. Hang stood up 91 and Wood stopped 92. Meredith cut 97. Fine took 57 inside and Nelson missed a cut on 99. McIntyre went right and blocked Leonhard. Lynch ran left but he had a hole to the right which would have resulted in a first down.
Stacked box: 4
Drive Killer: Lynch choosing the wrong hole - the Bills got a FG
Pass 24: Incomplete to Evans
Nelson slammed into 93 as Bell blocked him, toppling 93. Levitre stopped 91. Wood and Hang doubled 92. Meredith took 99 well around the corner. The one hop pass, by the way, was exactly the sort of throw that used to infuriate Bills fans when Losman was the QB.
Run 23: Lynch 1 yard through the left B gap
Bell wouldn't let 93 to turn to make the tackle as Lynch went through the hole. Levitre and Hang doubled 91 and turned him inside to open the run lane. Wood got under 57's pads and kept him turned so he couldn't chase the play. Meredith let 92 get inside of him and 92 went down the line to make the tackle.
Pass 25: INT against 7 man blitz (defense illegal contact)
Bell stopped 57. Levitre picked up 52 but he got to Fitzpatrick's feet, leading to the bad throw and negated pick. Hang let 50 blow right past him, which almost resulted in a sack. Wood picked up 33. Meredith popped 99 and then picked up 36 when 99 dropped into coverage. Lynch picked up 97 and Jackson crossed the formation to pick up 25.
Pass 26: McIntyre 18 yards
The line blocked like it was a run, the same play that the Bills have been beating to death with TEs. Maybe it was the fact that it wasn't to the TE confused the defense because they weren't all over McIntyre.
Run 24: Lynch 3 yards through the left B gap against an 8 man front
Bell took 70 wide and past the run lane. Wood picked up a filling 52 and turned him in circles. Hang blocked 91 down the LOS, who still got in on the tackle. Wood missed a cut on 57 at the second level. 92 got inside of Meredith and rolled down the LOS to get in on the tackle. McIntyre had a half assed block on 50, who was in on the tackle. Fine had a semi-block on 97 away from the play.
Pass 27: Incomplete to Lynch
Bell beat 50 to the corner but 50 got inside of him to chase the QB. Levitre and Hang doubled 91. Wood did a good job on 70 initially but 70 got off his block to chase Fitzpatrick. Meredith beat 99 to the corner but let 99 cut inside of him to chase the QB. The pass was high and Lynch only got his fingertips on it.
Pass 28: Evans 37 yard TD against a 5 man blitz
Bell beat 57 to the corner. Levitre picked up 36 and Hang got 50. Wood hit 50 and then stopped 97. Meredith had no one to block. It was good to see some other secondary taking bad angles for a change, by the way.
Stacked box: 1
Drive Killer: no one
Pass 29: Lynch screen 2 yards
Bell took 99 to the corner. Levitre did a bad job of selling the screen and 93 stuck with him and almost got a TFL. Hang chucked 70 and then got out to lead the screen but wasn't fast enough to get 25. Wood turned 70 out but the screen was so slow to develop that 70 was able to cross the field and get in on the tackle. Meredith let 79 get inside of him to chase the screen from behind to get in on the tackle. Man, Buffalo needs to work on screens.
Run 25: Lynch 3 yards through the left B gap against an 8 man front
Bell went to the second level and locked onto 57. Levitre turned 93 inside but he spun away from the block and made the tackle. Hang chucked 70 but wasn't fast enough to pick up a filling 52. Wood kept under 70's pads and drove him around and down into the pile. Meredith turned 70 out and kept under his pads when he turned back in. Fine did an okay job on 97. McIntyre stopped 99 on the edge of the LOS.
Pass 30: Reed 10 yards
Bell and Meredith had no one to block. Levitre, Hang and Wood easily handled 50 and 99. Lynch picked up 33 and Jackson picked up 97.
Run 26: Lynch 3 yards through the left B gap
Bell turned 93 away from the run lane. Levitre went to the second level and wrestled 52 down. Hang was pushed back 2 yards by 91 who then disengaged and made the tackle. Wood went to the second level and kept 57 busy. Meredith couldn't get inside 92, who was in on the tackle. McIntyre did a good job on 99 away from the play. Fine did an okay job on 97.
Run 27: Lynch 7 yards through right C gap
Bell got inside of 93 and cut him. Levitre cut 91, which was possibly a chop block as Hang was engaged with 91 as well. The flag may not have been thrown because 91 was holding Hang. Wood pulled and popped 52 hard enough to bounce him back 2 yards and then picked up 57. Meredith pulled and doubled 99 with McIntyre. Fine kept 92 well behind the play.
Pass 31: Incomplete to McIntyre
Everyone blocked like a run to the left. Yes, it's the same bootleg none-yard pass the Bills seem determined to use at least once per quarter. It was a bad pass and McIntyre fell down trying to reach it. Had he gotten the ball cleanly McIntyre would have gotten 8-10 yards.
Pass 32: McIntyre -1 yard
Bell stopped 93 and Levitre stopped 70. Hang and Wood doubled 92 and Meredith beat 50 to the corner. Have I mentioned how much I hate the none-yard patterns Buffalo's outlet receivers routinely run?
Pass 33: Scramble for 2 yards against a 5 man blitz
Bell had no one to block when 97 dropped into coverage. Levitre passed 99 inside to Jackson then hit 50. Hang and Wood doubled 92. Meredith made 21 go so far to get around the corner that he was completely out of the play.
Stacked box: 1
Drive Killer: Fitzpatrick's bad pass to McIntyre
Run 28: Jackson no gain through left C gap
Bell and Levitre doubled 93. 91 spun Hang down and got in on the tackle. Wood helped with 91 but couldn't get to anyone at the second level. Meredith kept 92 on the edge of the LOS. McIntyre had a poor block and Fine kept 97 out of the play.
Pass 34: Evans 12 yards
Bell and Levitre doubled 93. Hang picked up 57 and Wood blocked 91. Meredith and Fine picked up 92.
Run 29: Jackson 8 yards through the left C gap
Bell turned 93 inside to open the run lane and then buried him in the pile. Levitre picked up a filling 57. Hang stood up 91 until both were wiped out by Bell and 93. Wood helped with 91 and couldn't catch anyone in the second level. Meredith pushed 92 onto the pile.
Run 30: Jackson 1 yard through the right B gap against an 8 man front
93 got inside of Bellt o chase the play and get in on the tackle. Levitre missed a cut on 91 but slowed him down enough to keep him out of the play. Hang missed a cut on 52. Wood turned 92 to the inside and opened the run lane. Meredith kept 97 turned out to open the other wall of the run lane. McIntyre fell on 36 causing a pile up. Fine had a sad attempt at a block on 57, using the side of his helmet.
Run 31: QB sneak 1 yard through the A gap against an 8 man front
The line got a general 2 yard push. By the way, isn't it nice to see that the Bills can now run QB sneaks through the A gap?
Run 32: Jackson -1 yard through the A gap against an 8 man front
Bell cut 93. Levitre tried to shield 91 from the play but 91 cut inside to get in on the TFL. Hang went to the second level and missed 52, who was in on the TFL. Wood got no push on 92, who got in on the TFL after he shed Wood's block. Meredith pushed 99 to the sideline. McIntyre missed a block on 36 and seemed to hold him as well. Fine got enough of 57 to keep him out of the play.
Stacked box: 3
Drive Killer: end of regulation
Drive 12 (OT)
Pass 35: Scramble for no gain
Bell took 99 to the corner and kept him there. The rest of the line easily handled 93 and 91. Jonathan Stupar and McIntyre doubled 92, who still almost got a sack. I've got no idea why the Bills started OT with a TE who hadn't gotten a snap all day.
Run 33: Lynch 2 yards through the right C gap
Bell got inside of 93 and under his pads. Levitre helped with 93 then picked up 99 who had gotten away from McIntyre. Hang kept 91 turned once Wood had popped him. Wood then picked up 92 when he got away from Meredith. Stupar did an okay job on 97 on the edge of the LOS.
Pass 36: Incomplete to Evans against 5 man blitz
Bell stopped 52 and Levitre stuffed 50. Hang and Wood doubled 99 and Meredith picked up 36. It was another one hopper to a receiver. If Fitzpatrick's playing in Carolina he'd better put a little more on some of his passes.
Stacked box: 0
Drive Killer: Fitzpatrick
Run 34: Jackson 2 yards through left C gap
Bell went to the second level and missed a block on 52. Levitre let 91 shed his block to make the tackle. Hang did an okay job on 57. 92 got off of Wood's block but was too late. Meredith kept 99 on the edge of the LOS. Stupar did a fair job on 97. McIntyre had a good block on 93 at the point of attack.
Pass 37: INT
Bell beat 99 to the corner. Levitre and Hang doubled 93. Wood stopped 91 and Meredith took 92 around the corner. It was just a horrible, horrible decision by Fitzpatrick.
Stacked box: 0
Drive Killer: Fitzpatrick
Run 35: Lynch 1 yard through right C gap
Bell stood up 93. Levitre and Hang doubled 91 and buried him on the pile. Wood got enough of 57 at the second level to disrupt his balance. Meredith got underneath 99's pads and drove him inside creating the pile. Stupar kept 97 on the deg of the LOS. McIntyre hit 57 and put him down after Wood had him wobbling.
Run 36: Jackson 5 yards through the A gap
Bell kept 93 on the edge of the line until the play was over. Levitre drove 52 4 yards. Hang stood up 70. Wood shoved 57 5 yards despite 57’s illegal hands to the face that went uncalled. Meredith did an okay initial job on 99 but he shed to get in on the tackle.
Run 37: Jackson 6 yards through the A gap
Bell turned 99 out and away from the play. Levitre hit 57 and got enough of a push to keep him off the RB until he had a first down. Hang pushed 50 to the left and out to open the run lane. Wood chucked 70 then pushed 42 well upfield with Meredith. Lynch cut 97 which made the play - it would have been a TFL otherwise.
Run 38: Lynch 2 yards through the right B gap
Bell pulled but was too slow to catch anyone. Levitre missed a cut on 93 but slowed him down considerably. Hang hopped back and then dropped on top of 91 when 91 stumbled forward. Wood pulled and drove 52 out of the hole. Meredith pulled and turned 97 out of the run lane. Fine wasn’t fast enough to be effective while Stupar did a good job on 92.
Pass 38: Scramble 6 yards
Everyone blocked like it was a run to the right. The TE was hopelessly covered so Fitzpatrick ran the ball instead. Grrrrrr. I really hate this play. Yes, it went for 6 yards but it’s generally a loser.
Pass 39: Evans 29 yards against a 6 man blitz (replay overruled)
Bell stopped 97. Levitre was pushed back by 70. Hang and Wood doubled 91. Meredith tried to cut 92 and missed. Fine took 99 around the corner and Lynch finished off 92. It was an aggressive call. Give Alex Van Pelt and Dick Jauron credit.
Run 39: Lynch 3 yards through the right C gap
Bell pushed 70 inside to open the run lane. Levitre planted 57 when he tried to cut inside. Hang turned 91 to the right and kept under his pads. Wood helped with 91 and then hit 52 but didn’t sustain his block. Meredith locked up 91 on the edge of the LOS. McIntyre turned 99 out to open the run lane. Fine hand fought with 97 on the edge of the LOS.
Run 40: Lynch 1 yard through the right C gap against an 8 man front
Bell went to the 2nd level and tapped 57. Levitre let 91 get inside him but kept under his pads to keep him from turning. Hang chucked 70 and missed 52 at the second level. 70 got around Wood’s outside shoulder to chase the run. Meredith kept under 92’s right shoulder to let Lynch past. McIntyre hit 99 and slowed him down enough to keep him out of the play. Fine turned 97 out and kept him out of the play.
Stacked box: 1
Drive Killer: play calling
Let’s give Jauron and AVP credit for the long pass at the end of the game. If Evans hadn’t had that little shift/bobble the Bills would have been set up well inside easy field goal range. Something else to consider is that the Bills' offense ran an actual four minute offense to close out the game. While we naturally don’t care for Jauron’s play-not-to-lose outlook, the offense did use every second of the last four minutes of the game. It was an improvement over the Cleveland game last year in which the Browns would have had a minute (and some time outs) to drive for a winning score even if Lindell had hit the long field goal.
This was the first game that McIntyre had played a significant number of snaps. He looked quite a bit better than last year. I found it interesting that he wasn’t used as a lead blocker. Instead, he was asked to cut off backside pursuit by a defensive lineman. That allowed the line to slant away from that defensive lineman.
Last week Buffalo got the ball inside the 20 more times than I care to count. In New Jersey the worst starting position was the Buffalo 12. The average starting field position was the Buffalo 33.5. That certainly helps in a game in which the offense is doing little to improve on field position. The Jets were constantly faced with long fields while Buffalo only needed about 35 yards to get into scoring range.
This was the first game in which Buffalo faced a defense that loaded the box. The Jets had 8 or more defenders in the box on 15 of 40 (37.5%) runs. Buffalo was still able to run the ball with a degree of success. This is important because the Bills figure to see more defenses stack the box, particularly with Fitzpatrick at QB.
Meredith didn’t do terribly. I was surprised to see that the Bills gave Bell more help (5 plays) than Meredith (3). He flashed real potential but wasn’t exactly a paragon of consistency. If the question is whether to start Scott or Meredith next week the answer would appear to be, uh, sure. Seriously, if the Bills think Meredith has greater potential it’s not as if he’s got less experience than Scott.
The Bills didn’t give Meredith (or Bell) great amounts of help but it was clear that the Bills were waiting for a tsunami of blitzes from the Jets. I kept track of how many extra guys hung back to pick up blitzers. I didn’t even count guys who looked around and went out on a none-yard pattern. The Bills kept 1 guy back 10 times, 2 guys back 16 times and 3 guys back 1 time. In other words, on 27 of 39 (69%) of pass plays. Yikes! That’s a lot of guys not threatening the defense. However, it did keep Buffalo’s quarterbacks upright for the majority of the game.