Bills Win Meaningless Finale 28-9
Disappointing season comes to end with same record as last year.
by Steve Saslow
Leave it to the Bills to win a game when a loss would have served them better. The Bills brought the Jets down into the cellar of the AFC East with them thanks to a 28-9 win in the season finale at Ralph Wilson Stadium. A loss would have helped the Bills draft position going into April's draft. Bryan Scott returned an interception 20 yards for the Bills only defensive touchdown of the year. C.J. Spiller caught a screen pass and exploded for a 66 yard touchdown to give the Bills a 14-9 halftime lead. The Jets scored only three field goals in a half that they seemingly dominated but were trailing on the scoreboard. Brad Smith added a 4 yard touchdown run out of the wildcat and Tashard Choice put the exclamation point on the season with a 13 yard fourth down touchdown run with 1:10 to go. Spiller only had 59 yards on the ground in 24 carries while Stevie Johnson finished with six catches for 111 yards to go over 1,000 yards for the third straight season.
The Turning Point:
Spiller's TD: When Spiller turned on the after jets (pun intended) and went 66 yards for a touchdown on a screen pass it turned the game. The Jets were dominating until this play that gave the Bills a lead they wouldn't relinquish.
The Big Drive:
4th Quarter TD Drive: The Bills went 80 yards in 7 plays to Smith's four yard touchdown run out of the wildcat. The big play on the drive was a 37 yard bomb from Fitzpatrick to Johnson with a 15 yard roughing the passer penalty tacked on at the end of it. Smith also had a nine yard reception on the drive.
Stat I Did Like:
Red Zone Defense: The Jets were in the red zone three times and came away with just two field goals and a blocked field goal for just six points.
Stat I Didn't Like:
Yards per carry: The Bills were held to just 3.5 yards per carry. Spiller averaged just under 2.5 yards per carry.
- The Bills won the toss and elected to defer as usual.
- Shawne Merriman got the surprise start at defensive end instead of Kyle Moore.
- The interception return for a score by Bryan Scott was the only defensive touchdown of the season for the Bills.
- Alex Carrington aka Megahand blocked his fifth kick of the season in this game. Unfortunately since it was just a 23 yard field goal it went through anyway. Dareus also blocked a field goal attempt that didn't go through.
- Rian Lindell missed one field goal all year until missing two in less than a three minute span late in the third quarter. He missed from 50 and then 46 after the Bills recovered a fumble.
- Stevie Johnson went over 1,000 yards in quality fashion. He went up and pulled in a 37 yards bomb. He became the first player in club history with three straight 1,000 yard seasons.
Key Matchup Results:
The winners of the battles highlighted in our preview article:
CB Stephon Gilmore vs. WR Jeremy Kerley: Winner: Kerley. He had a big game going against both Gilmore and Williams.
DE Mario Williams vs. RT Austin Howard: Winner: Howard. He kept Williams away from Sanchez although he was called for one holding penalty.
WR Stevie Johnson vs. DB Antonio Cromartie: Winner: Johnson. He got his 1,000 yard season.
Keys To The Game Results:
How the keys highlighted in our preview article turned out:
1. Play For Pride: Success! They showed up and won a game although it hurt their draft position.
2. Play Physical: Failure! The Jets actually dominated the game on the line of scrimmage getting a big surge in their running game.
3. Run To Victory: Failure! They couldn't get the running game going but they got a defensive touchdown and the big Spiller touchdown to get the win.
Another long, painful, pathetic season mercifully comes to a close. Everyone knows that big changes need to happen I'm just not so sure they will. Chan Gailey has to go no question, but I'm not confident that this organization will make the move. Ralph Wilson hates to pay coaches not to coach and he hates coaching searches even more. They may convince themsleves that continuity is what is needed. If they don't make changes there really will be nothing to look forward to in the 2013. Let's hope they will at least give us something in the offseason to get optimistic about because I have taken just about all I can over the last 13 years.
Another long offseason that should bring many changes if the organization does what is right.
Stevie Johnson - Was the key offensive weapon on this day.
C.J. Spiller - Didn't have a big day on the ground but was the workhorse and had one very explosive play that was the turning point.
Bryan Scott - Scored the first and only defensive touchdown on the season.
Mario Williams - He was quiet again, what will be his excuse this week?
Rian Lindell - He was 0 for 2 on FG attempts.
Player Of The Week
Stevie Johnson - Three straight 1,000 yard seasons is an impressive stat.
Positional Breakdown and Grades
Jets Game Preview