Here are my five takeaways from the game.
The Tyler Bass Game
Six for eight on field goals. If you had him on your fantasy team, you’re probably pretty happy, but the Bills couldn’t score a touchdown. It was the first time they didn’t score a touchdown in the first half all year and the first time since 2018 the starters didn’t find the end zone. He tied Steve Christie for the most field goals in team history after the vet went 6-of-7 in 1996, and his eight attempts was a franchise record.
Cole Beasley’s career day
With John Brown sidelined, the Bills leaned on Beasley in the passing game as the Jets focused on Stefon Diggs. After waiting until the second half to get Beasley involved in previous weeks, Beasley was a key part of Buffalo’s plan this week. He set career highs in receptions and yardage going 11 catches for 112 yards and they were big yards, including in the two-minute drive to end the first half.
Welcome to the NFL, Dane Jackson
Jackson got his first NFL start on Sunday after being called up from the practice squad and he made it count. On the New York Jets’ first drive, he had a big pass break up on third down. Late in the second quarter, he picked off Sam Darnold to end a Jets drive. He has the second interception by a Bills defensive back on the season. With just over five minutes left in the fourth quarter, he made a big play on third down, too. A great debut for the rookie.
Two-minute drive delivers
Buffalo got the ball back at the end of the first half following Jackson’s interception and only had 40 seconds left. A penalty on the interception return knocked them back to their 27. A pass over the middle to Devin Singletary got 12 and they immediately got to the line for an 8-yard out to Stefon Diggs. After a 9-yard pass to Diggs and a timeout, the next play was an incompletion. With seven seconds left, the Bills sat on the 44 and needed some yards. Cole Beasley took a slant pattern for 14 yards in five seconds, Buffalo called their final timeout, and then Tyler Bass kicked it through from 48 yards out.
A.J. Klein was a massive miss in free agency
As the Bills were trying to protect Matt Milano, who they brought in mainly on third downs, Klein got a lot of run again at linebacker. On the Jets’ second drive, he allowed a 2nd-and-long conversion because he was slow in coverage, then Klein missed a tackle on a run fill the next play. That’s why he’s here; to stop the run. He’s a liability for the Bills’ defense and Buffalo paid him too much money for this kind of return. Even former UDFA Tyrel Dodson was getting run ahead of him until he also was hurt.
Jerry Hughes leads resurgent pass rush
The Bills found Sam Darnold seven times on sacks led by Jerry Hughes with two. Jordan Poyer had one on a safety blitz. Adding half sacks were A.J. Klein, Tre’Davious White, Trent Murphy, Dean Marlowe, Matt Milano and A.J. Epenesa. Hughes added the game-clinching interception to boot on a tipped pass. It was the first interception of his career. The defense allowed just 12 yards in the second half.
Penalties a problem
Jeff will talk about these more later this week, but penalties really hampered the Bills on Sunday. They took points off the board and made it difficult for Buffalo to get in a groove on offense. Eleven penalties is not usually a recipe for a win.
Zack Moss comes alive
It was nice to see Devin Singletary and Zack Moss get some play today. It was 20 minutes into the game before a running back got a carry, but Moss finished with 7 carries for 47 yards, his best game as a pro. Singletary added 8 rushes for 29 yards. It wasn’t great, but it was enough.
Bills’ history in tact
Buffalo has never lost to a team that was 0-6 or worse. Thirteen straight times in the Super Bowl era they’ve come out on top. Josh Allen threw for another 300-yard game, and he has the most 300-yard games in a single Bills season since 2002.