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Several Buffalo Bills reached new accolades, re-wrote team/NFL record books vs. Cowboys

While Josh Allen and James Cook were the talk of the day, Stefon Diggs, Latavius Murray, and Leonard Floyd all joined in with their own remarkable achievements

Miami Dolphins v Buffalo Bills Photo by Bryan M. Bennett/Getty Images

The Buffalo Bills have taken fans on a roller coaster ride with some amazing highs and some devastating drops through 15 weeks of the 2023 NFL season, so it was almost quietly that they found themselves in a position to change record books on Sunday afternoon — almost. But really, it’s not Buffalo’s style to do anything quietly, so they took the field and slammed their way through the Dallas Cowboys and up the record charts.

For quarterback Josh Allen, he now leads the NFL in the most games with at least one passing and one rushing touchdown in a season. Ever. Sunday was the 10th game this season that Allen found the end zone with both his arm and his legs. Interestingly, it wasn’t the most impressive game of Allen’s career as he only threw the ball 15 times, completing just seven passes for 94 yards and one touchdown. He also only ran for 24 yards on Sunday, but one of his eight carries was for a touchdown in the second quarter.

The point here being: it was enough. With three games left in the season, Josh Allen has passed Kyler Murray’s previous record of nine games (2020) in a single season in which a quarterback scored at least once on the ground and once through the air.

Stefon Diggs, despite having just four receptions for 48 yards Sunday, became the first Buffalo Bills player in team history to record four consecutive 1,000-yard seasons. Not an easy record to take over considering the Bills have Hall of Fame wide receiver Andre Reed on their roster of former players who spent 15 seasons in Buffalo. For Diggs, it’s the sixth consecutive 1,000-yard season of his career, with the first two coming while he was a member of the Minnesota Vikings. While it’s unlikely that Diggs surpasses his career high in yards this season (1,535 in 2020 — his first season in Buffalo), he needs just four more touchdowns over the next three games to up his personal best in that category.

The surprising fact that Allen and Diggs didn’t need to be overly productive on Sunday — and that’s really just a testament to how consistent the duo has been throughout the season — was due in large part to running back James Cook, who was busy writing his own story. The second-year running back came away from the game with six new accolades.

He started by recording a new career-high 221 yards from scrimmage, which included 179 rushing yards and 42 receiving. Those 221 yards are the most from a Buffalo Bills player since running back Fred Jackson had 227 yards in a game during the 2009 season. Sunday was Cook’s third 100-plus yard rushing game of the season, but it was his fifth straight game with over 100 scrimmage yards — making him the first Bills player to do so since running back LeSean McCoy in 2016.

Like Allen, Cook scored once on the ground and once through the air, making him the first Buffalo Bills running back to have a receiving touchdown during back-to-back games since Hall of Fame running back Thurman Thomas did so in 1995. And, while his 179 rushing yards are the 17th most during a single game in franchise history and the most since 2012 when Fred Jackson had 212 against the Indianapolis Colts, they are the second-most rushing yards in a single game in the NFL this season — behind only Miami Dolphins running back De’Von Achane who had 203 against the Denver Broncos back in September.

Cook needs just 32 rushing yards to record his first 1,000-yard season in the NFL. Considering he was able to put up 104 yards in the first half of Sunday’s game, it’s a safe bet to think he will surpass that coveted 1,000-yard mark Saturday when the Bills play the Los Angeles Chargers.

But, Cook wasn’t the only running back finding accolades on Sunday. Latavius Murray — who put Buffalo on the board with a two-yard touchdown run during the game-opening drive — recorded his fourth touchdown of the season. While it doesn’t seem like many, it’s a testament to Murray’s consistency and durability as it is Murray’s ninth consecutive season scoring four or more rushing touchdowns — the longest active streak in the NFL.

Though there were a lot of notable firsts and mosts on the offensive side of the ball, the defense was getting things done on Sunday too. For edge rusher Leonard Floyd, he recorded his 10th sack of the season. Sunday’s QB takedown gave Floyd a career high 10.5 sacks and he became the first Bills defender to have more than 10 sacks in a single season since Lorenzo Alexander tallied 12.5 in 2016. Floyd now ranks tied for seventh in the league with 39.5 sacks since 2020.

As a team, the Bills are now a league-best 16-2 in December/January regular-season games since 2020. Buffalo is also the only team in the past 30 years to have three touchdown drives of 11 or more plays and 75 or more yards in the first half of a single NFL game.

That’s a lot of firsts, mosts, and date changes for a team that couldn’t string two back-to-back wins together in the past two months. But it’s just a testament to how good the Buffalo Bills are, how unlucky the ball has bounced for them in some close games, and how ready they are to right the ship and finish the season proving that they are so much more than their October/November win-loss record suggests.

With three games left to play in the regular season, and the Bills sitting just outside the playoff window looking to get back on the inside, Buffalo has to put the league on notice. There’s a lot of football still to play.