The Buffalo Bills found a way to hold on Sunday, beating the Detroit Lions 14-13 in come-from-behind fashion. The Bills dealt with injuries and drops all over the field, but scraped together two outstanding touchdown drives. Here are my five observations:
Josh Allen is the Bills offense
I’m just recycling talking points right now, but with the running back injury situation, it isn’t too far off. He didn’t have the wheels today like he’s had in the past couple weeks, but his passing may be starting to catch up with his running. He had some nice touch on some passes and is still 100% willing to push the ball down the field. He still has accuracy issues, but we’ll take that for now. 13-of-26 for 204 passing yards and a touchdown is fine for now with this supporting cast. That last 4th down conversion was pretty sweet, too.
Brian Daboll is the truth
When the Bills jettisoned Rick Dennison at the end of the season, they went with a failed NFL offensive coordinator who was calling plays in the college football championship game at Alabama. But man, Brian Daboll has come home to Western New York and developed an offensive game plan that has maximized his speed and his quarterback. I’m legitimately excited to see what he can do with another offseason and an influx of talent.
Offense needs upgrades
Again, this isn’t breaking news. At one point in the game , Ike Boettger was in at right guard and Conor McDermott was in at right tackle because they wanted to try something. Allen didn’t have time. The running backs were met in the backfield a few times. Wyatt Teller was frequently beat. Oh, and Dion Dawkins was called for three penalties. It’s just bad. On top of that, Zay Jones dropped several balls and the tight end position was largely absent. Lots of money and draft capital this offseason will go this way.
Defense stout again
The Bills have wasted a great defensive effort this year. They forced Matthew Stafford into some bad plays all day and held the running game in check. Stafford had just over 200 yards passing and Detroit finished with barely over 100 yards rushing. They did allow two touchdowns drives, but most defenses that hold an opponent to 13 points are gonna win. That proved true today.
What a strange day. We saw a flag on the first play of the game but after the opening kickoff, Buffalo was only flagged twice more (that counted). They had a couple offsetting and declined penalties, sure, but only three assessed penalties on the day was huge in a close game.