Bills Get Trampled By Saints And Fins

By PFC Bills Writer Jay Kommuru

The Bills almost pulled it off against the Saints two weeks ago. Coming into the game, they knew they had to try to contain the best passing offense in the NFL – and they were largely successful. They held QB Drew Brees to 172 yards and no TD’s. However, the ineptitude on offense continues to put a lot of pressure on this defense, and hold this team back. Despite shutting down Brees, New Orleans was able to pull away in the 4th quarter by riding Pierre Thomas and the run game to a 27-7 victory. Give some credit to the Saints defense too as they look to be completely transformed under D-coordinator Greg Williams. They held T.O. catch-less, sacked Edwards 4 times, and didn’t allow a single offensive score. The lone TD by the Bills came on a fake FG throw by Brian Moorman to Ryan Denney. While the scoreboard doesn’t show it, the Bills defense played extremely well for the first three quarters. Eventually the lack of offense put the defense on the field for long drives and they ended up surrendering 17 pts in the 4th quarter.

On deck were the 0-3 Dolphins. This was a team that had just lost Chad Pennington for the year, and arguably their best defensive player – Joey Porter – was not likely to play in the game. A perfect opportunity for the Bills to improve their division record (they were 0-6 last year in the AFC East). They went into last Sunday vowing to get the ball into T.O.’s hands. Marshawn Lynch would be returning from his suspension itching to take the field. Instead the Bills let their own injuries affect their performance on the field. LT Demetrius Bell, S Donte Whitner, CB Leodis McKelvin (IR), MLB Paul Posluszny, and S Bryan Scott all missed the game. Starting for Bell was T Jonathan Scott, which promoted swing-tackle Kirk Chambers into the starting lineup at RT. The two of them got entirely dominated by the Miami pass rush as Edwards was sacked 6 times and it seemed like he was running for his life on almost every play. The same offensive issues that have been plaguing this team for the better part of this decade started resurfacing. No creativity in play calling, no aggressiveness, no protection for QB, and inconsistent QB play. That in a nut shell sums up the Bills offense. Edwards looked rattled as he threw for 192 yards and 3 INTs against a Miami pass defense that was in the bottom 1/3rd of the league.

On defense, the lack of experience in the secondary and the loss of Posluszny really hurt against the run. The Bills simply couldn’t stop Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams. QB Chad Henne, starting his first game, probably wishes that every game of his career is this easy. He wasn’t asked to do much as he threw for 115 yards, but the Miami defense and the run game dictated the tempo against the Bills enroute to a 38-10 trampling in Florida. The Bills defense was gashed for over 200 rushing yards.  The defense was however successful in creating some pressure on Henne which resulted in 6 sacks.  Overall, it was a dismal performance against a winless team. These are the type of teams that good teams make sure they beat.

Fans everywhere are calling for Jauron’s firing (The ESPN coach approval ratings reveal a 3% approval of the job done by Dick Jauron). The devastating loss in week 1 is looking more and more like the end of the Dick Jauron era in Buffalo. For now, Ralph Wilson has decided to stick with this coaching staff – maybe its because he just gave him a 3 year extension last year, or maybe he really believes that an in-season firing will squander any hope of the playoffs this year.

Going into week 5, the 1-3 Bills host the 0-4 Browns. I will post my proposed strategy against the Browns later in the week.