ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (WIVB) — The gap has closed, the Dolphins offense is something never seen before, Mike McDaniel is a genius. The message from around the NFL was loud: the Bills were a second class citizen in a division they’ve won three straight years. On Sunday, Josh Allen, Stefon Diggs and Sean McDermott’s defense sent a not so subtle reminder that the team to beat in the AFC East plays in Orchard Park. Here are my 4 Observations from the Bills win over the Dolphins:
Allen silences critics with near-perfect performance
Josh Allen’s doubters took a big hit today. After the loss to the Jets in Week 1, there were a lot of people second guessing the Bills quarterback. He followed that up with a decent game in a Week 2 win over the Raiders but the doubters were left saying he needed to be more of “game manager.” The Bills won in Week 3 but “It’s just the Commanders” became the naysayer’s rallying cry. Allen torched the previously undefeated Dolphins, going 21-25 for 320 yards and accounting for five total touchdowns. The Bills offense looked smooth in the win, scoring on eight of their first nine possessions. The Jets game seems like a distant memory.
Defense reels in McDaniel’s high-flying attack
The Bills defense had Tua rattled. The Dolphins hung 70 points on the Broncos last week but it was a much different story Sunday. The defense was able to get pressure on the Dolphins quarterback. Coming into the game Tau had been sacked once all season but the Bills took him down 4 times. The coverage in the secondary was outstanding, they made Tua hang onto the ball a split second longer than he wanted and they were able to get pressure on him most of the game. The Bills defense heard the number 70 a lot during the week and came out ready to send a message. McDermott is one of the best defensive minds in the game and McDaniel is one of the top offensive minds, but McDermott’s unit was far superior in the Bills win.
Injury concerns dampen the mood
There was a dark cloud hanging over the Bills locker room after the win. Tre’Davious White was carted off the field with an Achilles injury. White injured his knee back in 2021. He rehabbed and was able to play at the end of the 2022 season and was finally looking like his former All-Pro self. Dane Jackson came into the game to replace White with Christian Benford on the other side of field. Former first round draft pick Kaiir Elam has been a healthy scratch each game this season so the Bills will now need to see what he can do. It will be interesting to see if Brandon Beane takes a look at other potential veteran options.
Numbers tell the story
The Bills stats from this game, top to bottom, are very impressive. Josh Allen had a perfect passer rating (158.3) for the first time in his career. The Bills have won nine of their last 10 regular season games against the Dolphins. Linebacker Terrel Bernard has four takeaways in the last three games. Greg Rousseau had two sacks in the game and has five and a half sacks in five games against Miami.