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Advanced Stats: Bills-Panthers matchups to watch, Jerry Hughes in advantageous situation

The Buffalo Bills' Week Two game against the Carolina Panthers, Sean McDermott and Brandon Beane's homecoming, features an array of intriguing individual matchups.

McDermott knows many of the strengths and weaknesses of Panthers players, and many of those same players will know the ins and outs of his defense.

Don't forget, too, Bills offensive coordinator Rick Dennison was with the Denver Broncos when they squared off against the Panthers in Super Bowl 50.

(Stats courtesy of Pro Football Focus.)

Bills' biggest disadvantage

Panthers TE Greg Olsen vs. Bills LB Ramon Humber 

In Week One against the Jets, Humber allowed eight catches on 10 targets for 50 yards. In 2015, the year before he came to Buffalo, he was targeted 22 times, surrendered 19 receptions for 251 yards and one touchdown. That equated to a passer rating of 129.4 quarterback rating.

Last year, Olsen had Pro Football Focus' fifth-best tight end grade. He snagged 80 passes for 1,073 yards with three scores.

Beyond the statistics, Humber is  5-foot-11 and 232 pounds. Olsen goes 6-foot-5 and 254 pounds. Humber won't cover Olsen all of the tight end's routes, but expect Carolina's offensive staff to look to exploit this matchup.

Bills' biggest advantage

Bills DE Jerry Hughes vs. Panthers LT Matt Kalil

Kalil has experienced one of the more unusual career arcs for a top pick in recent memory. As a rookie in 2012, he fared well, as he finished as the No. 28 (out of 80) offensive tackle based on PFF's grade. After that, he slowly became a liability for the Vikings, and had his 2015 and 2016 campaigns cut short due to injury. Despite his health concerns and regression from his debut professional season, the Panthers signed him to a five-year, $55 million deal with $25 million guaranteed in March.

Last year, he allowed one sack, three hits, and five quarterback hurries on 69 pass-blocking snaps, the 133rd-highest pass-blocking efficiency among 170 offensive tackles in football. In Week One of this season, Kalil gave up one quarterback hit and received the 39th-best grade out of 70 qualifying offensive tackles.

The defender he'll primarily see one-on-one is Hughes, who received the 23rd-best overall grade among 4-3 defensive ends for his performance against the Jets. In 2016, Hughes finished with 50 quarterback pressures created (six sacks, five hits, and 39 hurries) on 425 pass-rushing snaps. The Hughes vs. Kalil battle is Buffalo's best opportunity to get to Cam Newton.

Best one-on-one matchup

Bills OG Richie Incognito vs. Panthers DT Kawann Short

Talk about a heavyweight fight. Incognito has been a star since he rejoined the Bills in 2015. He was PFF's second-highest graded offensive guard in 2015. Last year, he finished in seventh place at his position. The veteran flourished against the Jets in Week One and received PFF's top guard grade.

Short, who predominately lines up as Carolina's right defensive tackle -- meaning he'll see plenty of Incognito at left guard -- has risen to stardom over the past two seasons, as well. He graded as PFF's No. 4 defensive tackle in 2015 and climbed to No. 2 last season.

To begin the 2017 campaign against a patchwork 49ers offensive line, Short registered four quarterback hurries on 33 pass-blocking snaps.

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