Buffalo, N.Y. (WGR 550) - The Buffalo Bills rebounded in a big way on Sunday with a 32-6 beatdown of their AFC East rival New York Jets at Highmark Stadium in Orchard Park.
It was the first game after the dismissal of offensive coordinator Ken Dorsey, with Joe Brady taking over on an interim basis. It couldn't have gotten off to a better start.
Let's break it down peacefully, for once:
Passing offense: A
If Brady wanted to make a first good impression, that was one hell of a way to start!
Buffalo used motion, the middle of the field, Josh Allen under center, and every possible concept fans have been looking for since the departure of former offensive coordinator Brian Daboll.
It’s one thing to do this to a defense like the Las Vegas Raiders, Washington Commanders or Miami Dolphins. Brady’s first game calling plays was against a Jets defense that has bamboozled elite offenses and quarterbacks all year.
Allen was fantastic against a defense that usually creates nightmares for him, and he was able to move the ball without Stefon Diggs causing his usual damage.
Khalil Shakir continues to emerge as a depth option for the coming years. James Cook and Ty Johnson made plays out of the backfield to help Allen out, each scooting their way to the end zone.
In Brady’s first game after the removal of Dorsey as offensive coordinator, it could not have gone better.
He has one of, if not the toughest stretches of a schedule as one can see (Philadelphia Eagles, Kansas City Chiefs and Dallas Cowboys), but the Jets were a tough first test that was passed with flying colors.
Rushing offense: B+
Cook has evolved into one of Buffalo’s best players this season.
When he is more involved, Buffalo not only creates balance, but Cook is a viable weapon that can get the ball moving on both fronts.
Brady was also more inclined to run the ball from under center than Dorsey would in most games. To no one’s surprise, Cook popped off once again. Latavius Murray and Johnson were OK in chipping in, averaging 3.5 and 3.7 yards per-carry.
There wasn’t a big carry to inflate their totals, either. The longest Bills run in the game was 13 yards. It was just a steady rushing attack, mostly used later on to just kill clock and slat the game away.
Run blocking at the point of attack has been solid, as usual all season. This might be the best offensive line the Bills have had for Allen, and it is not even close.
Passing defense: A
The Bills somehow managed to lose to Zach Wilson in Week 1. This time around, they made Wilson look like the bust that he is.
This guy stinks.
It can even annoy you that Buffalo lost to him twice in a calendar year.
New York’s offensive line reminded Bills fans how Aaron Rodgers was injured on his only drive of the year when the Bills' pass rush teed off on him in four plays.
Buffalo added six sacks in this game, and made life even harder for Wilson and backup Tim Boyle.
The Jets' receivers totaled 14 yards total, as a group. For comparison, the special teams’ play that ultimately led to New York’s only touchdown went for 18 yards. A Jets cornerback had more receiving yards than their receivers.
Rasul Douglas was already a sneaky good trade deadline acquisition, and he had two interceptions and a fumble recovery against New York. Douglas will be leaned upon more as the season continues, especially if Dane Jackson has to miss any extended time due to a concussion.
Rushing defense: A
Typically, the Jets are able to run the ball well, but Buffalo stifled Breece Hall and company in this game. Then, as the offense found its way, New York had to abandon its struggling run game.
Hall had only 23 yards and averaged 2.3 yards per-carry, which is a far cry from the last time he faced the Bills defense.
Thanks to how terrible Wilson is, the Bills were able to focus on the Jets' run game and shut it down.
Tyrel Dodson had a solid game, leading the way in tackles and forced a fumble. It was Dodson’s best game of the season, as he has had to step into a bigger role after initially losing the chance to start over Terrel Bernard.
Special teams: D
Let’s keep the same energy, everyone. If a piece of the team is continuing to struggle, put the pressure on.
Matthew Smiley’s special teams’ unit has been a disappointment for most of the season. For players that have dedicated roster spots for special teams roles, they have struggled mightily, at times.
They allowed a good kickoff return again, Sam Martin has been awful as of late punting the ball, and the punt return team let the Jets get the better of them on a fake.
Not all was bad in this game, though.
Reggie Gilliam caused a fumble on the opening kickoff to breathe life into an exhausted Bills fan base. That kept the grade from being even worse.
But if Dorsey was allowed to be criticized, we should do the same for Smiley. Expect a new leader for that unit after the season, because their overall performance has not been up to par.
That is one way to lower the temperature on the hot seat.
Head coach Sean McDermott went through, easily, the worst stretch of his Bills tenure, and it remains to be seen if his team can keep this rebound up.
Buffalo has an uphill climb to reclaim a playoff spot, as they’re still in eighth in the conference. They also have one of the hardest remaining schedules in the league.
If the Bills get into the postseason, they will have earned it.
McDermott had this team ready to go after a major shakeup and an in-season coordinator firing. That is not an easy task, and one that could backfire in other instances.
If McDermott wants to keep the heat off of him, games like these will help.
Next up comes three games against some of the best in the league. Buckle up.
The Bills (6-5) are in Philadelphia this coming Sunday as they take on the best team in the NFL in the Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field for a 4:25 p.m. EST kickoff. Pregame coverage on WGR starts at 11 a.m. EST with "Bills Gameday".