Week 11: As Ugly A Loss As You Can Get
All three phases failed quickly against undefeated Pats.
by Steve Saslow
Here are our position by position grades:
J.P. Losman double clutched on an opening possession interception that set the scene for the rout. He made a nice throw on the touchdown bomb to Roscoe Parrish for one of the very few highlights for the Bills. He held on to the football too long and gave up a couple of coverage sacks. He finished with 173 yards passing thanks to garbage time yardage. Grade D: Even if he brought his A game they would have lost.
With Marshawn Lynch out Anthony Thomas got the majority of the work. He struggled finding holes in the running game and he dropped a pass in the 2nd quarter. He finished with 31 yards on 11 carries and had his best run, a 15 yarder, called back by a penalty. Dwayne Wright played very sparingly and had one carry for one yard. His one catch was fumbled and was returned for a touchdown. Fred Jackson had 15 yards rushing and two catches for nine yards in garbage time. Grade D: Didn't do the job but didn't have much of a chance when they fell behind real quick.
Lee Evans had four catches for 40 yards to lead the team in catches. Roscoe Parrish made a nice adjustment on the 47 yard touchdown pass from Losman in the first quarter. He was called for a costly illegal formation penalty that wiped out a 17 yard run by Thomas. Josh Reed didn't finish off his route on the first possession interception. He was also called for a false start penalty in the first quarter finishing with three catches for 44 yards. Robert Royal didn't catch a pass. Michael Gaines had a spectacular 13 yard reception after Losman picked up his own fumble 16 yards behind the line of scrimmage and found Gaines open. Grade D: Not enough to help the Bills in this game.
The unit did their worst job of pass protection all season. As Losman was constantly hurried and sacked four times although some of them were his fault. Langston Walker was called for a late hit after the opening possession interception that put the Patriots in the red zone. They only allowed Thomas to average 2.8 yards a carry. Grade F: Had no answer for the Patriots blitz packages.
Aaron Schobel was uncharacteristically quiet against New England. He did pressure Brady into an intentional grounding penalty. Chris Kelsay whiffed on a play that could have been a tackle for a big loss. the two highly paid players combined for five tackles. The defensive tackles weren't any better as there were holes in the running game. Jon McCargo had his worst game with no tackles. Larry Tripplett had one tackle. Kyle Williams was knocked out of position on the Patriots' first touchdown and had three tackles. Anthony Hargrove led the unit with four tackles and dropped back in pass coverage a couple of times when they went with the four defensive end set. Grade F: Worst game of the year for this unit.
John DiGiorgio was the most active with 11 tackles followed closely by Angelo Crowell who had 10 tackles. Unfortunately many of them were downfield after big gains. Crowell also had one pressure on a blitz. Keith Ellison continued his quiet year with three tackles. Grade F: Failed to cover the intermediate routes.
Terrence McGee got faked out of his cleats by Randy Moss on the Patriots third touchdown. Jabari Greer was beaten deep on the 2nd possession but the pass was dropped. He was "Mossed" on Randy's third touchdown of the first half. George Wilson failed to cover Moss on New England's second touchdown. He couldn't get over quick enough on a big third down conversion to Donte Stallworth late in the first quarter. Then he got burned for a 35 yard gain by Ben Watson all before halftime. Jerametrius Butler was beaten on that play as well. Donte Whitner was beaten by the fourth first half touchdown by Moss and by Watson's fourth down touchdown in the third quarter. Grade F--: Is there a lower grade you could give this unit?
You know it's a bad day when Brian Moorman has an off night. He finished with a 36.5 yard average and a 35.5 yard net on four punts including one inside the 20. Rian Lindell was the lone bright spot with a 52 yard field goal. Terrence McGee had eight kickoff returns but only averaged 18.4 yards including a long of 29. Fred Jackson had one return, probably because McGee was exhausted, and gained 16 yards on it. Roscoe Parrish did not return New England's only punt. Grade D: Off night for this unit as well.
Dick Jauron made the right call in challenging a possible fumble on a kickoff return. It was one of those calls that always goes for the Patriots even though it was definitely a fumble. Why kick a field goal down 42-7? Didn't have any answers for the Patriots. Grade F: When you lose by 46 the coaching staff has failed.
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