Bills come back to defeat Colts in preseason opener

Buffalo wins its ninth preseason game in-a-row in comeback fashion

Orchard Park, N.Y. (WGR 550) - The Buffalo Bills defeated the Indianapolis Colts on Saturday in comeback fashion, 27-24, to open the 2022 NFL preseason at Highmark Stadium. This win marks the ninth-straight win for the Bills in exhibition play.

The game was rather quiet on the scoring front in the first half with six combined turnovers from both teams and a score of 10-7. The second half, however, saw an explosion of offense from both sides, ending in a successful Bills comeback.

The Bills were unsuccessful on their first drive of the game after a fourth down attempt to tight end O.J. Howard was incomplete. Quarterback Case Keenum threw an interception on the next drive, and the Colts took over the ball on the Bills' 10 yard line.

The Colts were unable to get into the end zone after three big stops from the Bills defense. Indianapolis then settled for a field goal to go up 3-0.

On the third possession for the Bills, Keenum and the offense couldn't get anything going after an incomplete pass to Howard and two short runs from rookie running back James Cook.

Photo credit Skyworks Equipment Rental

Buffalo's defense held strong on the next Colts drive, as cornerback Cam Lewis had a big hit in the back field to hold veteran running back Nyheim Hines to no yards. The next play, rookie cornerback Christian Benford breaks up a pass to wide receiver Michael Pittman to force the Colts off the field after a failed fourth down conversion.

After a great pass from Keenum to wide receiver Jake Kumerow, Kumerow can't hold onto the ball and Indianapolis recovered the fumble to end the first quarter.

Buffalo's offensive woes continued in the second quarter, as Keenum fumbled the ball on a drop back for the Bills' third turnover of the day.

The Bills defense flipped the script on the next drive, though, as Boogie Basham was able to sack quarterback Nick Foles and strip him of the football. It was then rookie linebacker Terrel Bernard who picked up the loose ball and returned it 69 yards for a touchdown.

The quarterbacks exchanged interceptions later on, as Foles was picked off by Bills safety Jaquan Johnson, who ran the ball down to the Colts' 15-yard line. On the very next play, though, Keenum threw a ball intended for Isaiah Hodgins that was picked off by Isaiah Rodgers and ran back to the Colts' 36-yard line.

After the interception by Rodgers, Foles walked the Colts down the field in nine plays for 64 yards, capping off the drive with a 15-yard touchdown pass to Ty'son Williams to put Indianapolis up 10-7.

Keenum's day was done under center after the first half, completing 11-of-18 pass attempts for 86 yards with two interceptions and one fumble.

The Colts started off the second half with Sam Ehlinger in at quarterback. He managed to drive Indianapolis 75 yards in 12 plays, finishing off the drive with an 11-yard touchdown pass to Jelani Woods. Kicker Jake Verity missed the extra point attempt, giving the Colts a 16-7 lead.

Matt Barkley came in at quarterback for the Bills during the second half. He immediately connected with rookie wide receiver Khalil Shakir on back-to-back passes for 25 yards and 21 yards. The Bills came up short of the end zone, however, and settled for a 48-yard field goal from kicker Tyler Bass to make the score 16-10, Colts.

Ehlinger and the Colts capitalized off of a Barkley interception and scored the first touchdown of the fourth quarter. This time, it was a 12-yard touchdown pass from Ehlinger to Michael Jacobson. D'vonte Price rushed it in for the two-point conversion to give the Colts a 24-10 lead.

The Bills would answer back on the next drive led by undrafted rookie running back Raheem Blackshear. Across the five-play drive for Buffalo, Blackshear would amass 50 total yards and also a rushing touchdown. Buffalo's attempt for a two-point conversion fell short, resulting in the Bills trailing the Colts, 24-16.

After a big stop from the Bills defense, holding the Colts to only three yards on three plays, Barkley and Blackshear helped the offense march down the field again in just 2:42 on six plays. Once again, the drive was capped off by a Blackshear touchdown, his second of the game. Veteran running back Duke Johnson then managed to convert a two-point conversion to tie the game, 24-24.

After another stout defensive stop by Buffalo, the offense had one more big drive in them, as Barkley helped lead the Bills down the field into field goal range with just seconds left in the game.

Buffalo sealed its ninth preseason win in-a-row with a 46-yard field goal from Bass, giving the Bills the 27-24 win.

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First quarter:

- 3-0 INDIANAPOLIS: Colts field goal (6:13) - Rodrigo Blankenship's 24- yard field goal attempt is good.
Drive info: 4 plays, 4 yards, 1:55

Second quarter:

- 7-3 BUFFALO: Bills touchdown (6:33) - Terrel Bernard recovers a fumble and returns it 69 yards for a touchdown. (Tyler Bass' extra point attempt is good)
Drive info: 6 plays, 16 yards, 3:35

- 10-7 INDIANAPOLIS: Colts touchdown (1:42) - Nick Foles tosses a 15-yard touchdown pass to Ty'son Williams. (Rodrigo Blankenship's extra point attempt is good)
Drive info: 9 plays, 64 yards, 3:22

Third Quarter:

- 16-7 INDIANAPOLIS: Colts touchdown (7:17) - Sam Ehlinger throws an 11-yard touchdown pass to Jelani Woods. (Jake Verity's extra point attempt is no good)
Drive info: 12 plays, 75 yards, 7:43

- 16-10 BUFFALO: Bills field goal (2:49) - Tyler Bass' 48-yard field goal attempt is good.
Drive info: 10 plays, 60 yards, 4:28

Fourth Quarter:

- 24-10 INDIANAPOLIS: Colts touchdown (10:30) - Sam Ehlinger fires a 12-yard touchdown pass to Michael Jacobson. (Indianapolis' two-point conversion attempt is successful)
Drive info: 3 plays, 17 yards, 1:29

-24-16 BUFFALO: Bills touchdown (8:10) - Raheem Blackshear punches through with a one-yard touchdown run. (Buffalo's two-point conversion attempt is unsuccessful)
Drive info: 5 plays, 77 yards, 2:20

- 24-24 BUFFALO: Bills touchdown (3:51) - Raheem Blackshear powers through for a three-yard touchdown run. (Buffalo's two-point conversion attempt is successful)
Drive info: 6 plays, 57 yards, 2:42

- 27-24 BUFFALO: Bills field goal (0:00) - Tyler Bass' 46-yard field goal attempt is good.
Drive info: 12 plays, 45 yards, 3:25


Photo credit Skyworks Equipment Rental



What's next:

The Bills return to Highmark Stadium next Saturday, Aug. 20 against Russell Wilson and the Denver Broncos. Kickoff is slated for 1 p.m. ET on the official voice of the Buffalo Bills - WGR Sports Radio 550.

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