Through two quarters against the Los Angeles Chargers, the Buffalo Bills have put together a 17-6 lead. The Bills’ defense is doing a great job of shutting down rookie sensation Justin Herbert, aided by some fortunate dropped passes. Meanwhile, Buffalo’s offense has delivered enough points for comfort, and the special teams is in cruise control. They’re set up well to close out a win in the second half.
The Bills have attacked the Chargers with a steady dosage of designed runs, screens, and draws—a tactical shift from their other games this season. It’s helping to stave off some of the pressure from the talented Chargers defensive line—Josh Allen’s been sacked once today—but the Buffalo’s offense has been less explosive than usual, as a result.
On the Bills’ opening drive, they scored a touchdown with only nine rushing yards and seven passing yards. That’s because Stefon Diggs drew a 47-yard pass interference penalty and set up a goal line series. Allen finished the drive with a touchdown pass to Dawson Knox in the back of the end zone.
The Chargers responded with a methodical 13 play, 79-yard drive. Keenan Allen found juuuust enough room near Tremaine Edmunds for a catch at the goal line, but the Chargers missed their extra point kick, leaving Buffalo with a 7-6 lead.
Buffalo’s second touchdown came on a trick play. The Bills set it up with two screen passes earlier on the drive. Allen tossed the ball backward to Cole Beasley, who wound up and lofted a pass to Gabriel Davis. The rookie, who had pretended to block, released upfield into the end zone for a wide-open touchdown.
The Bills had another promising drive cut short after Allen twisted his ankle on an aborted running play. Matt Barkley came in for one snap, but was sacked instantly when Brian Winters and Daryl Williams forgot about blocking Joey Bosa. Allen came back in on the next play, but the Bills went nowhere on third down. Tyler Bass nailed the 45-yard field goal to put the Bills up 17-6.
Meanwhile, the Chargers have punted four consecutive times after their touchdown drive. Herbert is only 15 for 27 passing, with a few of his passes a little bit off target. The difference has been those dropped, missed passes.
The Bills are set to receive the opening kickoff of the second half. If they can avoid another third-quarter collapse and maintain their lead, this team will be 8-3 for the second year in a row. Here’s your open thread for the rest of the game. Go Bills!