The Buffalo Bills have been a Jekyll and Hyde team this year winning their first five of seven and then losing seven straight. I needed to talk to someone in the know to find out just what has been going on with this team and how they will match up against the Broncos this Saturday.
That’s why I asked Brad Andrews from BuffaLowDown to talk about the team that he knows best. He is the editor for the site and he knows the inner workings of the Bills better than most.
Let’s got Inside the Villain’s Venue with BuffaLowDown.
Q: The Bills won their first five of seven games, but they’ve lost seven in a row since. Why the dramatic drop in performance?
1) Injuries. The Bills are not a deep team at all and really needed about eight key guys to stay healthy…and almost all of them got hurt. DT Kyle Williams, RB Fred Jackson, LT Demetrius Bell, C Eric Wood, LB Shawne Merriman, CB Terrence McGee and WR Roscoe Parrish all are out for the year or just getting back now, and those were really huge losses.
2) Ryan Fitzpatrick. More on him later.
3) Turnovers. The Bills got really lucky early in the year and were forcing four or five turnovers every single game. Since then, nothing has gone Buffalo’s way on defense.
Q: Ryan Fitzpatrick leads the league in interceptions. Is this a giant concern for the Bills with them facing an intense pass rushing duo in Von Miller and Elvis Dumervil?
A: Huge concern. Fitz doesn’t take a lot of sacks but does rush to get the ball out too quick and makes some horrible decisions as a result. The reason he’s struggled so badly lately is that teams know he can’t throw it deep very well and that he’ll throw it quick if there’s any pressure at all. So now they’re just playing tight coverage on the Bills wide receivers and daring Fitz to beat them deep. He can’t do it.
Q: The Bills play in one of the toughest divisions in football. Do you see them competing for a top spot in the next few years? What’s the future like for this team?
A: The Bills aren’t as bad off as their recent seven-game slide would indicate. Those injuries really were killers. With another good draft and a few decent free agent signings the Bills could legitimately compete for a playoff spot next year. But they’ve got to plug a few gaping holes on the roster (most notably at outside linebacker, which is a train wreck).
Q: Has No. 3 draft pick Marcell Dareus lived up to expectations? Had the Broncos taken Dareus with the No. 2 pick, do you think Bills would have selected Von Miller?
A: If Von Miller had been available at #3, the Bills’ rep would have sprinted to the podium, knocked over Roger Goodell and announced the pick himself. The Bills really wanted Miller, but were happy to get Dareus, who’s been solid and at times spectacular in his rookie season. Next year, when Buffalo gets criminally underrated DT Kyle Williams back healthy, the combo of Dareus and Williams is going to be very effective. But that all said, Von Miller would have been huge for Buffalo. This team has no pass rush.
Q: Finally what’s your prediction for Saturday’s game?
A: I think the Bills hang around in this one longer than they probably have any right to but end up getting Tebowed at the end by the Broncos, 23-20.