CINCINNATI – Tyrod Taylor neatly summarized the Buffalo Bills’ offensive performance Sunday.
“The offense didn’t play the way we needed to win against a very good defense,” Taylor said after a 20-16 loss at soggy Paul Brown Stadium. “I’ll take full responsibility for that.”
Taylor’s numbers weren’t pretty – 20 of 37 for 166 yards, one touchdown and one interception. He was sacked six times, and rushed just once for 3 yards.
“Just trying to take what the defense was giving us,” coach Sean McDermott said when asked after the game whether there was a concerted effort to keep Taylor in the pocket. “We’ve got to take a hard look at the film and learn from it as coaches, as players, and use it to our advantage moving forward.”
Taylor’s record fell to 2-16 in games in which the Bills have trailed by four or more points at any time in the game.
“At the end of the day, I’m going to be judged on wins,” Taylor said. “Right now, we’re sitting 3-2 and we have full schedule ahead of us. Ultimately, we’ve got to do whatever it takes to regroup over this bye week.”
The Bills squandered good field position twice in the second half Sunday. After Jordan Poyer’s interception gave the offense the ball at the Cincinnati 36-yard line, the Bills lost 10 yards and punted.
“There were a bunch of times in this game where we didn’t capitalize on the field position,” Taylor said. “We knew, against this defense, against this bunch, we needed to finish those drives with seven, and we didn’t do that today. There were too many threes and too many punts.”
Taylor’s passer rating of 63.6 is the third worst of his career with the Bills. He is now 1-11 in games that he throws the ball 30 or more times.
“We need to continue moving forward and find ways to win, because we have a bunch of tough opponents ahead of us,” Taylor said. “It starts with me, and I’ll get things corrected and keep practicing to get everybody on the same page.”
Through five games, Taylor hasn’t been close to on the same page with his receivers. He completed just three passes to his wideouts Sunday, two of which went to Brandon Tate.
“I have full confidence in those guys,” Taylor said of his wideouts, which Sunday included Tate, rookie Zay Jones (one catch for 9 yards on six targets), Andre Holmes (no catches on one target) and Kaelin Clay (no catches on one target). “Everyone’s capable. Brandon Tate came in and played a heck of a game and was able to make a big play out there on the touchdown pass.
“It’s a work in progress. We’re going to continue to work on the chemistry and continue to work on knowing each other. It’s a new group. We’ve talked about that. Things haven’t been perfect up to this point – there’s still going to be some bumps in the road – but we’ve got to keep continuing to push through that and find some ways to win. I have confidence in those guys. Today, we just didn’t play up to our full capability.”