The Buffalo Bills went into Foxboro Stadium fired up and ready to prove everybody, that this Bills team was for real. After all, pretty much the whole world had written them off because of their uncharacteristically late coaching change, and poor pre-season offensive performance. Despite a heartbreaking loss to the Patriots,(25-24) they managed to prove much more than that.
Trent Edwards managed a magnificent game. With two touchdown passes no interceptions, a QB rating of 114.1 he took what the defense was giving him. He made the no huddle look like it had been implemented there for years, against possibly the best schematic head coach in the N.F.L. Edwards was great, and despite it all there was one thing impressed me more than anything. The wondering eyes. I could see him going through his progressions, his eyes wondering not giving away where the football is going. That is a sign of a truly great quarterback. (Something Losman knew nothing of)
The key to Edwards success is no secret. He has all the weapons to do plenty of damage, but it all starts up front. This is the job of a very talented yet inexperienced offensive line. A line that took most of the criticism. After all there are three players that never played a single N.F.L. snap, and all five were in new positions, just weeks before the opening day. Hangardner(C) is extremely smart and the anchor of the bunch. He and Butler(RT) will lead the rookies. Wood(RG) can play, all he needs is time and Levetre(LG) is working well on the left side with Demetrius Bell (LT)who was predicted to be the next Jason Peters, and happens to be the biological son of Karl Malone (H E L L O). Other than a few expected penalties these guys played extremely well for their first game. They deserve a lot of credit giving Edwards time, and making holes for the runs and the screens. Expect this bunch to improve as the season progresses, and once that playoff run begins, these guys should be right where they want to be.
The Bills Defense didn't fail to impress. They stopped the run and put lots of pressure on Tom Brady. For most of the game they played cover2, and in many cases the front four was enough pressure. Of coarse that has much to do with the return of Aaron Schovel, who had one sack and an interception return for a touchdown. Until the last TD by Brady, this defense was relentless. All swarming over the football, not missing many tackles, and disciplined all around. It is clear that this Buffalo Defense will be the one constant this season, keeping this team in games when the offense struggles the most.
In recent history, the only one thing that's for "sure" in Buffalo, has been their Special Teams. There's only one way to describe them.........Special. As a matter of fact we have gotten so used to it, that a punt or kickoff return is almost always expected. Leotis Mcelvin led the N.F.L. in kickoff returns last season. He was also the single reason for Tom Brady's amayzing comeback on MNF. He fumbled the kickoff return with 1:59 to play, and gave the Patriots the ball well in field goal range. The only problem I have with this is the end result. Mcelvin rarely makes those kind of mistakes. Yes he should have taken a knee, yes he cost us the victory, but If he decides to run it out (he will think twice next time) let him. He is one of the most explosive players in the league, and I won't hang him for one mistake. if you really want to hang someone, hang Jauron. (I'll get the rope)
For fifty-five minutes the Buffalo Bills looked like a playoff team. for the last five they looked like the same old Bills, reinventing new and creative ways to lose. As the season progresses more and more questions will be answered. The Bills true Playoff fate shall be determined. The only thing I know for sure is I haven't seen a Bills team like this one in many years. It's only one game, but there's only one way this team can go, and that is up. With all three phases playing well, there is no doubt that the playoffs are in their grasp, and not making it would be a total failure. So this is it. This is the year the Buffalo Bills make the jump from mediocrity to greatness. Only one thing remains, GET READY BILLS FANS.
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