The Buffalo Bills were dealt a swift blow to the gut on Sunday, as Tom Brady and the New England Patriots had their way, earing sole possession of 1st place in the AFC East. In a game with high expectations and emotions, along with the division lead at stake, it was a tough loss.
After reviewing the All-22 of the game, here are my player awards, with accompanying Vine video clips.
Offensive MVP: WR Robert Woods
With Sammy Watkins facing off with Patriots cornerback Darrelle Revis throughout the entire game, Robert Woods was the featured wide receiver. Kyle Orton targeted Woods 11 times, connecting eight times for 80 yards and a touchdown.
Woods showed off his speed, quickness and smooth route running, consistently getting open and picking up chunks of yards after the catch.
Offensive LVP: RT Seantrel Henderson
Seantrel Henderson has given the Bills great value, considering his draft position, but his play on the field has left a lot to be desired. On Sunday, the Patriots confused him with stunts and abused him with wide rushers, taking advantage of his massive size to the tune of two sacks, a QB hit and a hurry.
Rob Ninkovich and Deonte Skinner each caught him off-balance, and each delivered huge blows to Kyle Orton.
Honorable Mention: RB C.J. Spiller
There’s no question that Offensive Coordinator Nate Hackett hasn’t put C.J. Spiller in the most ideal positions to make plays, but Spiller deserves some criticism as well. Far too often, Spiller will bounce outside the tackle and lose yardage, rather than execute his assignment and take the yard or two he can get.
Hackett and Marrone need to get creative and find ways to get Spiller the ball in space, where he’s a threat to score from anywhere on the field, but when he’s not in those positions, C.J. needs to take the yards that are there.
Defensive MVP: LB Nigel Bradham
When watching the All-22 of the Bills’ defense, Nigel Bradham is hard to miss. Bradham is a big, physical and extremely fast linebacker that has made huge plays against the run, while displaying great range when dropping into coverage.
Bradham was all over the field on Sunday, racking up eight tackles, five of which were “stops.”
Honorable Mention: DE Jerry Hughes
Jerry Hughes had a great game against Patriots’ left tackle Nate Solder, racking up a sack, a hit and two hurries to go along with four tackles. Hughes’ burst off the snap and swim move from his wide alignment were too much for Solder, a big tackle that struggles with speed off the edge.
Defensive LVP: S Duke Williams
With Aaron Williams inactive with an injury, the Bills’ 2013 4th-round pick Duke Williams was forced into a starting role. It wasn’t pretty. Williams was often tasked with covering Rob Gronkowski, one of the biggest matchup nightmares in the league, in man coverage. Williams was targeted seven times, with Gronk catching five for 60 yards against him.
Williams was consistently out of position, but what really blew my mind when watching the All-22 was the lack of hustle he displayed. On one play, the Bills were in Cover 1, with Duke Williams playing the deep middle and Leodis McKelvin in man coverage on Gronkowski. Gronkowski beat McKelvin over the top, and Williams jogged behind him as he picked up nearly 30 yards after the catch.
On another snap, Gronk was motioned from the slot to the boundary. Williams began walking over to cover him, but Brady snapped the ball before he could get there, hitting him in the flat which went for a gain of seven.