The Buffalo Bills had no answers for stopping Jonathan Taylor on Sunday afternoon at Highmark Stadium.
The Indianapolis Colts running back dominated the day in Orchard Park with 204 total yards and five touchdowns, which included 185 yards rushing and four scores on the ground in a dominating 41-15 win over the Bills.
The Colts opened the game with the football and managed to punch the football into the end zone. Indianapolis turned to Taylor early, as the second-year running back opened the game with 35 yards on six carries, and punched in a three-yard touchdown to give the Colts a 7-0 lead.
That opening drive for the Colts ended an impressive stretch for the Buffalo defense, as the Bills gave up their first opening drive touchdown to their opposition of the season.
As Buffalo got the ball for their opening drive of the game, Josh Allen and the Bills got as far as the Indianapolis 28-yard line before a false start penalty on Cody Ford and a holding penalty on Mitch Morse backed the team out of field goal range. On a 3rd-and-18 at the Colts' 43-yard line, Allen forced a pass into double coverage intended for wide receiver Gabriel Davis, only to be picked off by safety George Odum.
The Colts immediately took the turnover by Allen and produced seven more points on the scoreboard, and it was Taylor finding the end zone once again. This time, it was through the air, as he took a 23-yard pass from quarterback Carson Wentz in for a touchdown.
Buffalo was able to bounce right back with an 11-play drive down the field 73 yards and into the end zone for the Bills' first points of the day. Allen and the offense was able to cap the drive off with a six-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Stefon Diggs.
Although Indianapolis' third drive of the game did not result in a touchdown, they were still able to move the ball down the field and produce three points. It was a 36-yard field goal from kicker Michael Badgley that gave the Colts a 17-7 lead just before the two-minute warning.
However, on the ensuing kickoff, the football would go right back to the Colts after a costly mistake by Isaiah McKenzie.
With the rain coming down and conditions deteriorating, McKenzie fielded the short kickoff at the Buffalo three-yard line. After a 12-yard return, McKenzie tripped on his and coughed up the football without being touched. The Colts ended up recovering the loose football and returning it to the Bills' two-yard line.
On the very next play, it was Taylor hurdling the pile at the goal line and into the end zone for his third touchdown of the day.
With just under two minutes remaining in the first half, the Bills offense only managed to get as far as the Colts' 38-yard line before sending out Tyler Bass for a 57-yard field goal attempt. While his kick had plenty of distance, his attempt ended up hitting the right upright and fell no good.
Buffalo received the opening half kickoff, but failed to produce anything with their first chance. After three-straight incomplete passes thrown by Allen, the Bills punted the ball away.
After the Bills defense forced the Colts to punt for the first time on the afternoon, Buffalo managed to get back into Indianapolis territory and into scoring position. After an incompletion to Cole Beasley on a 3rd-and-5 at the Colts' 31-yard line, Bills head coach Sean McDermott elected to send the field goal unit on to the field for a 49-yard attempt. However, Bass' kick ended up pulling to the left from the right hashmarks and sailed no good.
The Colts managed to take Buffalo's missed chance and turn it into seven more points as Taylor managed to find the end zone for a fourth time on the day. Taylor's third touchdown run of the afternoon came from 10 yards out as he stiff armed his way in for the score.
Buffalo's next drive only lasted three plays and it resulted with another interception of Allen. This time, as Allen's pass attempt went towards wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders, the ball was tipped in the air twice and picked off by cornerback Kenny Moore II.
Six plays later, the "Jonathan Taylor Show" continued as he found the end zone for a franchise record fifth time on the day. This time, it was his fourth touchdown run as he ran up the middle from one-yard out to make the score 38-7.
The Bills managed to get back in the end zone on the following drive, as Buffalo went 77 yards down the field on 10 plays, ending with a nine-yard connection between Allen and Diggs once again. The Bills made the score 38-15, as Allen rushed the ball in for the two-point conversion.
The Colts added another three points to the score with 6:27 remaining in the game with a 35-yard field goal from Badgley.
With the game so far out of reach, the Bills ended up turning to the backups offensively, including at quarterback with Mitchell Trubisky replacing Allen under center.
However, on Turbisky's fifth passing attempt of the drive, he threw an interception right to Colts linebacker Zaire Franklin.
At that point, both teams would let the clock run down and the game would end with the 41-15 final score.
With the loss, the Bills now drop to 6-4 on the 2021 season and are officially in second place in the AFC East standings. It is the New England Patriots now in the No. 1 slot in the division with a 7-4 record and currently riding a five-game winning streak.
- 7-0 INDIANAPOLIS: Colts touchdown (8:55) - Jonathan Taylor punches in a three-yard touchdown run. (Michael Badgley's extra point attempt is good)
Drive info: 11 plays, 65 yards, 6:05
- 14-0 INDIANAPOLIS: Colts touchdown (1:38) - Carson Wentz tosses a 28-yard touchdown pass to Jonathan Taylor. (Michael Badgley's extra point attempt is good)
Drive info: 5 plays, 57 yards, 2:20
- 14-7 INDIANAPOLIS: Bills touchdown (10:44) - Josh Allen fires a six-yard touchdown pass to Stefon Diggs. (Tyler Bass' extra point attempt is good)
Drive info: 11 plays, 73 yards, 5:54
- 17-7 INDIANAPOLIS: Colts field goal (2:16) - Michael Badgley's 36-yard field goal attempt is good.
Drive info: 15 plays, 58 yards, 8:32
- 24-7 INDIANAPOLIS: Colts touchdown (1:59) - Jonathan Taylor hurdles the pile for a two-yard touchdown run. (Michael Badgley's extra point attempt is good)
Drive info: 1 play, 2 yards, 0:04
- 31-7 INDIANAPOLIS: Colts touchdown (5:27) - Jonathan Taylor scampers for a 10-yard touchdown run. (Michael Badgley's extra point attempt is good)
Drive info: 5 plays, 61 yards, 2:46
- 38-7 INDIANAPOLIS: Colts touchdown (0:58) - Jonathan Taylor runs up the middle for a one-yard touchdown run. (Michael Badgley's extra point attempt is good)
Drive info: 6 plays, 24 yards, 3:31
- 38-15 INDIANAPOLIS: Bills touchdown (12:42) - Josh Allen throws a nine-yard touchdown pass to Stefon Diggs. (Buffalo's two-point conversion attempt is successful)
Drive info: 10 plays, 77 yards, 3:16
- 41-15 INDIANAPOLIS: Colts field goal (6:27) - Michael Badgley's 35-yard field goal attempt is good.
Drive info: 10 plays, 63 yards, 6:19
The Bills will have a short week to prepare for a Thanksgiving road matchup with the New Orleans Saints at the Caesars Superdome on Thursday night. Kickoff is slated for 8:20 p.m. EST with John Murphy, Eric Wood and Sal Capaccio on the call along the Buffalo Bills Radio Network.