Buffalo Bills edge rusher Von Miller showed up and showed out against the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday. Miller’s two sacks and two tackles for a loss were an instrumental part of the Bills’ big-time road win. Throughout the whole game, Miller made multiple game-changing plays. Let’s take a look at the film for a closer view of Miller’s afternoon in Missoui.
This play sums up Miller’s presence on the field in a nutshell. Quarterback Patrick Mahomes is in shotgun, with Miller to the right side standing up. At the snap, Miller engages with left tackle Orlando Brown to the point where both Brown and Miller are right next to Mahomes (who is staring downfield, unbothered by the former All-Pro right next to him). Miller simply reaches out his left arm around Brown to grab Mahomes. This forces the QB to run all the way to the right side of the field and throw the eventual pick. The fact that all Miller has to do is reach with his left arm to make Mahomes flee the pocket shows how aware he is of Miller.
In this play, Miller’s on the right side of the line. At the snap, he uses a bull rush against Brown to get him off balance. Brown then anchors and holds his ground against Miller, so Miller rips inside of Brown to cause the pressure. This forces Mahomes to leave the pocket by running up the middle. Forcing Mahomes to scramble for the first down is typically better than forcing him to pass—where the Chiefs usually make their biggest offensive plays.
Miller’s on the left side for this 3rd & 6 play. At the snap, he dips his shoulder and bends around right tackle Andrew Wylie for the sack of Mahomes. These were the kind of plays that the Bills struggled to finish last year against the Chiefs with Mahomes being among the most elusive quarterback in the NFL. Now, with Miller playing for Buffalo on these high-leverage third downs, he makes a routine sack on one of the best scramblers in the league.
Pre-snap, Miller is standing up on the left side. At the snap, he uses slight hesitation on Wylie, then hits the spin move against him. Miller then goes inside of Wylie and chases Mahomes out of the pocket. This results in Mahomes having to make a difficult side-arm throw toward the sideline that lands incomplete.
Miller is on the left standing up pre-snap. Miller sheds Wylie at the snap, then goes inside and crosses his face to force inside pressure. This pressure by Miller forces Mahomes to attempt an ill-advised, sidearm throw off his back leg while hopping, which results in the pick by cornerback Taron Johnson. The pressure Miller creates forces bad decisions by the offense, and makes life easier for the secondary.
Miller really started dominating when the Bills lined him up on the left side of the defensive line. He caused Wylie problems on that side for most of the second half. All the game-changing plays Miller made against the Chiefs are the main reason why One Bills Drive brought him to Western New York. As a Super Bowl MVP, Miller has made the biggest plays during the largest moments. The Chiefs were highly aware of Miller’s location the entire game, and he still directly impacted the game during the most important moments, as all generational players do. As it relates directly to the Chiefs, they need to approach their right tackle situation differently the next time they face the Bills. Wylie simply had no answers for Miller near the end of the game.