Fans clamoring for the Buffalo Bills to keep trying to right the ship on offense have looked at various options. One of the more often heard (and realistic) cries is to give playing time to rookie guard Wyatt Teller. This particular wish was granted against the Chicago Bears when Teller saw his first regular season action. Let’s take a peek and see how he handled things.
Here’s Wyatt Teller’s first play of the game, subbing in at left guard for Vlad Ducasse. Jonathan Bullard tries to run through Teller and eventually gets around him. But not before Teller holds him up for three seconds. From a physics standpoint the two are matched pretty evenly. Teller gets an early leverage advantage and is off to a good start.
It’s Teller vs. Bullard again and Teller appears to be winning this round as well. The difficulty of the block is way higher on this play as Teller also needs to prevent Bullard from moving quickly to the play side. Teller’s feet tell the story here. As he tries to get himself in the best position he takes large steps which cause larger shifts in his center of balance. When the play comes their way, Bullard has the ability to launch sideways and make the stop. Teller’s block isn’t the only thing that doesn’t go perfectly for the record.
Wyatt Teller has some decisions here. He can help block the nearly 300lb Bullard or go one-on-one with the 239lb Danny Trevathan. With LeSean McCoy also in to block, Teller elects to help wipe out Bullard. Based on how effective Shady is on Trevathan it appears Teller made the right decision. Nathan Peterman has a clean pocket based on the team effort.
Teller has a heck of a shove on Roy Robertson-Harris. It’s maybe even a little too good of a shove, as Robertson-Harris collides with Chris Ivory. Nathan Peterman seems to be looking in that direction and Ivory’s timing as a safety valve has been disrupted. Dion Dawkins has been beaten from the edge and Peterman is forced to take off.
If you took a look the Jeremiah Sirles all-22 here’s some bonus review, as the pair of Sirles and Wyatt Teller saw time together toward the end of the game. Notice that Teller has flipped to the right guard spot. Sirles remains at right tackle. For this play, Teller has to decide between helping Sirles or Russell Bodine. Based on the angle of approach it appears Bodine’s man will be disruptive to the play earlier. Teller seems to agree and directs his efforts there. Telller and Bodine ensure a clean pocket for Peterman. Jeremiah Sirles isn’t all that “traditional” in his block, but manages to hold up long enough for this quick pass.
Both Wyatt Teller and Jeremiah Sirles take an early impact that set them a little off balance. Both struggle to maintain their block as a result and the defenders both circle around and flush Peterman out of the pocket. As the graphic says they’re both flirting with holding penalties. Both are good non-calls though Teller is fringe. Stay tuned for the bye week when I’ll dive into the offensive holding penalty and show how Sirles is actually in no danger of being called for holding.
Both Teller and Sirles block Jonathan Bullard. Kylie Fitts stunts to the gap in the middle and it looks like Teller is about to get a lesson in “NFL speed.” Instead, a beautiful weight shift from Teller puts him in position to disrupt Fitts’ momentum and knock him out of the gap. Marcus Murphy may have had the block himself but Teller makes it a lot easier. With Teller moving off the block on Bullard, Sirles’ feet take him where he needs to be to cut off Bullard and maintain that block.
Wyatt Teller made a few mistakes in limited action. In a full game with opponents able to study his tendencies it’s possible he’d be a liability as the unquestioned starter. On the other hand, he’s shown he’s strong enough to take on NFL defensive linemen which is a great start for a fifth round rookie. Several plays also demonstrated good decision making and enough technique to be effective. With the phrase “mathematically alive” being the current beacon of hope, Teller is a player that McDermott would be wise to continue playing.