Grading the Bills: Week 9


The Buffalo Bills swept the Miami Dolphins with a 33-17 win. For more observations on that game, click HERE.

Below are the grades for each aspect of the game:

  • Passing Offense: The return of QB Tyrod Taylor meant big things for the Bills offense. Taylor wasn’t asked to do much, but when the Bills had to dial up a pass, Taylor didn’t miss. No, really, he didn’t miss. Taylor went 10-11, with his lone incompletion coming when he was being spun around by Dolphins DT Ndamukong Suh and threw it away to avoid the sack. Taylor had two deep bombs to WR Sammy Watkins, who also returned after missing time and had a career-high 168 yards. While the passing game didn’t need to do much, they stepped up when needed. GRADE: A
  • Running Offense: With a fully healthy LeSean McCoy and the return of Karlos Williams, Buffalo ran the football at will. McCoy ran for 112 yards and a TD and Williams had 110 yards and 2 TDs. McCoy had a huge play, gashing Miami for a 48 yard TD run to kick off the offensive fireworks. Buffalo would finish with 420 total yards, 266 of them on the ground. If McCoy and Williams can stay healthy and be together, this will be a norm. GRADE: A
  • Passing Defense: Buffalo seemed to do enough on defense to make sure that Miami wouldn’t ever take the lead or take momentum away from the high-powered Bills offense. Buffalo’s passing defense was a bend-but-don’t-break defense, but it allowed for several long Miami drives. Thanks to the heroics of CB Stephon Gilmore, Miami never threw for a TD. But Buffalo needs to address how to cover opposing RBs out of the backfield. Miami’s Lamar Miller had 97 yards receiving. GRADE: B
  • Running Defense: An under the radar stat, Miami averaged 4.6 yards per carry on 106 yards. But Miami needed to pass often to keep up with Buffalo’s offense. Miami RBs Miller and Jay Ajayi did take advantage of space, each getting over 40 yards. When the offense blows up like this, the defense can force teams into one dimension of football. That’s what they did here. GRADE: B+
  • Special Teams: It sucks to say this, but WR Denarius Moore needs to go. He has not offered any positive boosts to field position and had one good return since being signed. The Bills got CB/S Leodis McKelvin back, so they should utilize his return skills now. Kicker Dan Carpenter didn’t miss, and specialist Jordan Gay once again created bad field position for Miami’s drive starts. GRADE: C+
  • Coaching: With a healthier roster on the field, days like these are easy. Greg Roman used his two backs with deadly force, and Rex Ryan’s defense just had to keep Miami from going off. While not all is fixed here in Buffalo, the return of many players shows that Buffalo’s offense, not its defense, is the unit that will be winning games. GRADE: B+

Keep it here to Better Live Than Dead Sports for more on your Buffalo Bills!

Written by Derek Kramer

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