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Buffalo Bills worked on defending the screen game in bye week self-scouting

Lorenzo Alexander talked about it this week on Mike Tice’s podcast.

Matt Warren is Associate Director of NFL coverage for SB Nation and previously covered the Bills for Buffalo Rumblings for more than a decade.

The Buffalo Bills were on the bye week last Sunday and, as part of that week off from game prep, it allowed the team to do some self-scouting to address deficiencies and move forward with new strategies or ideas.

Veteran linebacker Lorenzo Alexander was on the “Odds and Ends” podcast with Mike Tice this Friday and he shared some of the information on what Buffalo’s staff put together for Buffalo’s stout defense.

“The coaches had put this entire presentation together with the things we have done really well, and highlighting those points; some of the stats like scoring defense, playing the pass,” said Alexander.

Buffalo currently stands fourth in points per game allowed at 14 points, just .2 points per game behind the third-place Chicago Bears. They are third in the NFL in passing yards allowed.

“But [we were] also really just focusing on some of the things we haven’t done so well,” continued Alexander. “A couple of the glaring issues... sacks, but also playing the screen game. Since we are such an attack, kind of down-hill, aggressive defense, we’ve given up a lot of big plays on screens and as you know, an offense that is very stagnant can get some big plays on you that can really change the momentum of a drive including the outcome of a game because those big plays normally lead to points. That was some of the things we have to focus on and continue to improve on as we get further into the season.”

In their last game against the Titans, the biggest play from Tennessee was a 57-yard pass play that started as a one-yard screen. With Tre’Davious White aggressively attacking the play-action fake, no one was in the area to stop Jonnu Smith. (Watch for yourself.) Luckily, the Titans would miss the field-goal attempt.

Alexander and the Bills know that if they keep giving up big plays in the screen game, it’s going to hurt them down the road.

“We know with a team like Miami, they ran ten screens last week versus Washington,” said Alexander about their Week 7 opponent. “Some of that is to get the quarterback going but also some of it is attacking us because they know we are so aggressive and we haven’t played that type of play well this season.”

It was interesting to get this peek behind the curtain at one of the top defenses in the NFL. You can listen to the entire interview on Spotify.