In a game where the Buffalo Bills’ defense dominated and the offense scored the most points they have all season while improving to 5-3 on the season, my grading process was easier than usual. While the offense should have done even more, they scored plenty and din’t turn the ball over. You can’t ask for more than that.
If you were forced to ask for more though, the part of the offense that they need to address is consistently scoring touchdowns. It is a problem I pointed out in the preseason and that has continued to pop up all season. They just can’t seem to find the end zone consistently, as they were granted great field position on three occasions, but failed to sustain the drive and wound up settling for a field goal. One positive is that they have Dan Carpenter, who was again excellent – drilling a 53-yard FG. Despite the inconsistency, Kyle Orton was solid in this game, throwing 4 TDs and no interceptions. Plus he needed only 10 completions to throw for those scores and his 238 yards. The biggest reason his yardage total is so high on so few completions? Sammy Watkins. He showed up in a big way, for a second consecutive game, hauling in an 84-yard pass that would have gone for a TD if he didn’t make a rookie mistake and a 61-yarder that did see him reach pay dirt.
These last two games we’ve seen everything we’ve hoped to when the Bills traded up to get him — here’s hoping it continues. On the flip side, the run game was almost nonexistent this week, which isn’t all that surprising considering the Jets stingy run defense and the loss of our two best running backs, but they’ll have to do more in Week 10 if they want to get another win. With all those factors considered, I’ve graded the Bills offense at an B+ this week.
The offensive grade of an B+ might be debatable, but the defensive grade is not at all. They get the first A+ of the season and if I could go any higher I would think about it. For starters they picked off Geno Smith three times in his first 8 pass attempts of the game. Needless to say the Jets made the switch to Mike Vick after the third turnover, but it didn’t get much better. He did burn the Bills with his legs a few times en route to 69 rushing yards, but the Bills forced him to fumble twice and picked off one of his passes as well. If you’re keeping count at home that’s 6 turnovers the Bills forced today. They also had consistent pressure, with 4 sacks in this game. The 23 points is a little higher than I’d like to see against an unimpressive Jets unit, but they were on the field for 83 snaps so I’ll cut them some slack for it as the final TD came later in the fourth.
Samuelson Slant Grade: A
*I considered going A- for the offense and so I was in between on the final grade I gave them the slight bump.
All in all this was a great blowout win and heading into the bye week just a game behind the Patriots is a better position than I would have predicted at the beginning of the season. Next week I’ll take a look at the grades I’ve given both units so far and determine my mid-season grade for the team.
Don’t forget to comment below, how would you of graded the team? Would you have given the offense less credit? Let me know Bills Mafia.