Xs and Os - The Buffalo News

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Xs and Os

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Travis Kelce vs. Micah Hyde The Bills have not faced many top tight ends this season. Now they get Kelce, arguably just as tough a matchup as the Pats' Rob Gronkowski. At 6-foot-5, 260 pounds, he's not quite as powerful as Gronk, but he's faster. Kelce led NFL tight ends last season with 1,125 yards on 85 catches. He's on pace for 94 catches and 1,181 yards this season.…

Bills

Mark Gaughan's Play to Watch: Deep post to Travis Kelce Elite tight ends are tough matchups because they're too big for defensive backs and too fast for linebackers. Kansas City tight end Travis Kelce is a matchup nightmare for defenses because he can not only beat safeties with speed, but cornerbacks, too. The Chiefs like to line him up alone on one side of the …

Bills

The Buffalo Bills have not been able to take advantage of one of Tyrod Taylor's better strengths this season. Throwing deep has been a Bills weakness through 10 games. Taylor ranks 16th in the NFL in yards gained on passes thrown 20 or more yards downfield, according to Pro Football Focus statistics. The Bills are on pace to finish in the bottom 10 in both pass plays…

Bills

The Buffalo Bills' defenders will have their minds full in preparing for the Kansas City offense this week. Chiefs head coach Andy Reid is the master of misdirection. His offense is heavy on shifts, motion, bunch formations and fake-action opposite the actual direction of the play. The idea is to make the defense play slower. "It's a lot of deception," said Bills …

Bills

Big Play Breakdown: Fake Jet Sweep Power-Shovel Option This 15-yard touchdown against Philadelphia in Week 2 is a good example of how Kansas City coach Andy Reid deploys his two game-breaking offensive weapons, tight end Travis Kelce (87) and receiver Tyreek Hill (10). The Chiefs run a lot of fake jet sweeps. Hill ran in motion to the left and then back to the righ…

Bills

The Buffalo Bills' deficient pass rush had another forgettable outing Sunday. The Bills are not getting to the quarterback with four rushers, so they tried more five-man rushes against the Los Angeles Chargers. To no avail. The Bills blitzed Philip Rivers 10 times in 37 drop-backs in the 54-24 loss at StubHub Center. Rivers was 8 of 10 for 118 yards when blitzed,…

Bills

The Buffalo Bills tried hard not to put rookie quarterback Nathan Peterman in bad positions Sunday in Los Angeles. So much for best-laid plans. The Bills kept extra blockers in to protect on nine of Peterman's 14 pass attempts. Peterman's inexperience and the greatness of Chargers pass rusher Joey Bosa combined to blow up the Bills' game plan in their 54-24 defeat. …

Bills

CHARGERS-BILLS MATCHUP WINNERS Joey Bosa vs. Jordan Mills The Chargers' star was too much for the Bills' right tackle. Bosa had four hits on the quarterback, one sack and a forced fumble. He was even a bigger factor than the numbers suggest. Bosa hurried Nathan Peterman on the first interception (although Patrick DiMarco dropped the pass). He bull-rushed Mills and hi…

Bills

I can think of only one uglier first half ever in Buffalo Bills football history. That was in the middle of the 1977 season. The Bills were 1-5 and got steamrolled by the Seattle Seahawks. Jim Zorn passed for 296 yards in the first half and led Seattle to a 42-3 lead at intermission. The Seahawks went up, 49-3, and won, 56-17. O.J. Simpson was lost to a season-ending kn…

Bills

Los Angeles Chargers fifth-year receiver Keenan Allen is one of the more polished route-runners in the NFL. He is especially good on in-breaking routes. Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers is exceptionally accurate on crossing and in-breaking routes. Allen stands 15th in the NFL in both catches (44) and yards (596). Allen has 18 third-down catches for first downs, tops in t…

Bills

Chargers OL vs. Bills' DL The Bills' competition takes a step down after being hammered by the Saints' stellar offensive line. The Chargers' front five has been pretty good in pass blocking but weak in run blocking. Los Angeles has failed to hit 100 rushing yards in six of nine games. Center Spencer Pulley is a weak link and he's bothered by a sore knee. Right guard Ken…

Bills

Credit Los Angeles Chargers General Manager Tom Telesco with trusting his eyes, not his stopwatch, before the 2016 NFL Draft. Ohio State defensive end Joey Bosa ran a poor time of 4.86 seconds in the 40-yard dash during the 2016 NFL Scouting Combine. Jadeveon Clowney, the top pick in 2014 and the same weight as Bosa coming out of college, ran 4.53. Khalil Mack, the f…

Bills

Kelvin Benjamin might not realize it yet, but he should be hopeful about the shift from Tyrod Taylor to Nathan Peterman. One of Taylor's best assets is his superb protection of the football, his extreme avoidance of interceptions. But he takes that trait to a fault with his reluctance to pull the trigger. As has been written and said so many times, Taylor is not an a…

Bills

Not only are Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram elite speed rushers, they are versatile and are used in a variety of ways by Los Angeles Chargers defensive coordinator Gus Bradley. Both can bump inside to a defensive tackle position, and they run hard-to-handle twist stunts. Three of Ingram's 8.5 sacks this season have come on twists. This was an 11-yard sack by Ingram (54…

Bills

You have to be worried about the talent level of the Buffalo Bills' front seven in the wake of Sunday's 47-10 shellacking at the hands of the New Orleans Saints. The defense of Sean McDermott and Leslie Frazier relies on a dominant front four. McDermott benefitted in Carolina from the beefy defensive tackle combination of Kawann Short and Star Lotulelei, both high-end, …