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Marcell Dareus playing time increase highlights Buffalo Bills snap count notes from Week 7

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There was quite a bit of offensive line shuffling against the Bucs on Sunday.

The Buffalo Bills came out of their bye week with a 30-27 come-from-behind victory over the visiting Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Let’s take a look at how the playing time was distributed for the game.

Offense (68 total plays)

OT Jordan Mills - 68
G Vlad Ducasse - 68
C Eric Wood - 68
QB Tyrod Taylor - 68
G Richie Incognito - 59
OT Cordy Glenn - 58
RB LeSean McCoy - 57
WR Jordan Matthews - 55
WR Zay Jones - 55
TE Nick O’Leary - 54
TE Logan Thomas - 29
WR Andre Holmes - 27
WR Deonte Thompson - 21
FB Patrick DiMarco - 16
G Ryan Groy - 15
OT Dion Dawkins - 11
RB Mike Tolbert - 10
TE Khari Lee - 5
WR Brandon Tate - 2
RB Taiwan Jones - 2

  • There was plenty of shuffling along the offensive line, as Incognito missed nine snaps with an injury (more than he missed all of last season) and Glenn continued his way back into the offense after not appearing in a play from scrimmage since Week 2 (he played four special teams snaps in the loss to the Bengals two weeks ago).
  • As a result, both Groy and Dawkins played a relatively high amount of snaps yesterday. Groy had played in one offensive snap all year prior to his 15 yesterday, while Dawkins still saw 11 plays after ceding his starting spot at left tackle to Glenn. Both subbed in for Incongito when he went down, and the Bills also used a sixth offensive lineman several times after doing so only once all year prior to Sunday.
  • Thomas continued to see an uptick in his playing time to backfill Charles Clay during his recovery, and he responded against Tampa with his first touchdown catch of the season. The game also saw the first action for tight end Khari Lee, who played five snaps after serving as a fixture on the inactive list for the first part of the season.
  • Taiwan Jones saw his first two snaps with the offense this season, and he featured prominently in both: he was targeted in the end zone on a pass prior to Stephen Hauschka’s missed field goal, and he converted a third-and-9 on the Bills’ final drive to help wind the clock down prior to Hauschka’s game-winner.

Defense (72 total plays)

S Jordan Poyer - 72
S Micah Hyde - 72
CB Tre’Davious White - 72
LB Preston Brown - 72
LB Lorenzo Alexander - 60
CB Leonard Johnson - 53
DE Jerry Hughes - 50
LB Matt Milano - 47
DT Kyle Williams - 45
DT Marcell Dareus - 41
CB E.J. Gaines - 41
CB Shareece Wright - 30
DE Shaq Lawson - 30
DT Jerel Worthy - 29
DE Eddie Yarbrough - 29
DT Adolphus Washington - 27
DE Ryan Davis - 22

  • Poyer and Brown continue to be the only defenders to play every snap this year (White and Hyde missed two each against the Jets), but Poyer’s standing is in jeopardy after he sustained a knee injury on the final play of the game. He’s day-to-day at this point, but even if he plays it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him taken out for a few plays to make sure his knee is holding up.
  • Outside of the top four, the most playing time on the defense has gone to 34-year-old Kyle Williams, who has played in 297 snaps this year. Three behind him is fellow 34-year-old Lorenzo Alexander (who is about a week and a half older), tied with Jerry Hughes at 294 snaps. The veterans are a huge presence in Sean McDermott’s defense this year.
  • Over the last three games, the Bills have scratched one of their backup defensive linemen while giving about 50 total snaps to the other two. Sunday saw Cedric Thornton sit out while Worthy and Davis combined for 57 plays in reserve.
  • It was the most snaps Marcell Dareus (41) has seen all season and almost equivalent to the previous two games combined (45). Both head coach Sean McDermott and defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier said Dareus put in a good week of practice and he was rewarded with playing time.
  • Lawson saw an unusually low snap count on Sunday, given that he’s usually in the mid-40’s and hadn’t gone below 37 this season before yesterday. Yarbrough saw a slight uptick from where he had been earlier in the season, if you were wondering where those snaps might have gone.

Special Teams Notes

  • Deon Lacey was released by the Bills on October 18. On October 22, he played 15 special teams snaps, about par for the course with him this year. Tyrell Adams be damned.
  • Despite Alexander’s heavy workload, he continues to be a key force on kick coverage. He notched 16 plays on teams against the Bucs and recorded the only special teams tackle of the game for the Bills.
  • The overall leader in special teams playing time for the Bills has been rookie linebacker Tanner Vallejo, and he continued his prominent role with 20 special teams snaps on Sunday.