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Dareus Review: Sizable impact beyond stat sheet in limited action vs. Panthers

Marcell Dareus was credited with only one assisted tackle against the Panthers, the second-straight week he's had that exact stat line.

But let's dig deeper than the elementary statistics.

(Bills stats courtesy of Pro Football Focus.)

In Carolina, the Buffalo defensive tackle received an overall PFF grade of +1.0 on just 18 snaps – he suffered an ankle injury early in the game but returned in the second half. That was the sixth-highest grade of all 17 Bills defenders who saw the field in Week 2.

After a +2.1 pass-rushing grade against the Jets, Dareus made his biggest impact as a run-stopper against the Panthers, as he received a +1.2 grade in that area. His pass-rushing grade was -0.3.

Dareus is currently PFF's No. 18 defensive tackle (out of 80 qualifying players at that position). On film, he flashed the ability to quickly work his way down the line of scrimmage on runs away from him and his refined block-shedding skill.

The latter was apparent on his assisted tackle on the Panthers' opening drive of the third quarter. Christian McCaffrey near his left shoulder, and Dareus dispatched the offensive lineman blocking him and made a thunderous tackle at the line of scrimmage.

(I'm assuming he wasn't credited with a stop by PFF because it was an assisted tackle.)

Dareus only had seven pass-rushing snaps against the Panthers and mostly seemed to be asked to occupy blockers or play contain as part of the plan to limit Cam Newton's running. There was one instance in which he attempted a pass-rushing move but was stymied at the point of attack.

It's safe to assume the Bills want more than two assisted tackles in two games from their highest-paid player. But Dareus has been far from a liability thus far in 2017. Facing a much less sturdy interior offensive line in Week Three than what he was up against in Carolina will be good barometer for Dareus.

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