The Buffalo Bills walked out of U.S. Bank Stadium on Sunday victorious, collecting a 27-6 win over the Minnesota Vikings—and the score doesn't do it justice. The Bills controlled nearly every aspect of the game, and each phase of the game built off one another.
Some players made a larger impact than others. Below is our recap of the five players we told you to watch.
QB Josh Allen
Allen turned on the jets and took control of the offense the entire game. Going 15 for 22 passing with 196 yards and a touchdown, adding two more scores with his legs. He looked comfortable and decisive—and the game didn't get too big for him. There was one throw he likely wanted back, and it was the first deep ball to Robert Foster, which was underthrown by a few yards. You saw the same last week as well, when Allen threw a long completion to Zay Jones. Allen babies some of his throws when he needs to just trust himself. Still, if right now I can look at only one throw and say that it needs to be better, there isn't much to complain about. Josh Allen extends plays better than a lot of guys in the NFL already, including his opponent this past week: Kirk Cousins.
WR Ray-Ray McCloud III
Not the welcoming party I thought McCloud would have, with just one catch for six yards early in the game and a punt return for 13 yards. I don't expect him to stay quiet for too long. As he gets healthier and more involved with the first team offense, Josh Allen will look his way.
Ryan Lewis, who was signed freshly off the New England Patriots’ practice squad and Lafayette Pitts were the two guys playing opposite Tre’Davious White. Most of the game they played well but we can credit a good pass rush for not allowing Cousins to sit back in the pocket for five seconds. Late in the game when the Bills were playing prevent defense, Adam Thielen brought in 14 catches for 105 yards. Ryan Lewis looked to be the better of the two. He made a couple of big tackles towards the boundary to force the Vikings in 3rd and long situations, leading them to punt.
DT Star Lotulelei
I could've sworn that I saw Lotulelei record his first tackle of the season, but the official stats from the team says no and he remains without a tackle through the first three games. For the third straight week, he saw a plethora of double teams, freeing up guys like Jerry Hughes and Trent Murphy with one-on-ones on the outside. The Vikings only ran the ball four times for 12 yards if you don't count Cousins trying to make something out of nothing.
LB Lorenzo Alexander
Alexander only had one tackle for the game but much like Jerry Hughes, it doesn't tell the story. On pass-rush downs, the Bills like to line Alexander up in a 3-tech on the defensive interior—and he simply flourishes. His strength to bully guards back into their quarterback is impressive and it showed on Sunday. No sacks on the stat sheet, but the Vikings felt his presence when Cousins dropped back.