Week 4: Bills Pull Off Shocking Win In Atlanta
Three turnovers by defense leads to upset win.
by Steve Saslow
Here are our position by position grades:
Tyrod Taylor was in command most of the day and played a good football game from a game management standpoint. Taylor did overthrow a couple of receivers deep but made a fantastic throw downfield to Charles Clay and another one that was dropped by Zay Jones. He scrambled twice for first downs on third down plays and didn't turn the ball over. Finished going 12 of 20 for 182 yards and a 106.7 QB rating.
Grade B+: His biggest road win as a Bill.
LeSean McCoy seemed to struggle with injuries most of the game but did end up with 108 total yards including 76 yards on the ground.
Mike Tolbert continues to struggle some as the number two back gaining 31 yards on 8 carries but had a fumble that was luckily recovered by the Bills.
Patrick DiMarco was psyched to play against his former team and it showed. He had his best game blocking for the Bills running backs especially during a long third quarter drive where they ran the ball down the Falcons throats.
Grade C+: That third quarter drive was a thing of beauty but needed more of that.
Jordan Matthews caught both passes thrown his way, one went for a touchdown and the other one fell a yard short of one.
Zay Jones has a confidence problem as he dropped two passes and only caught one. He dropped a deep pass and couldn't connect with Taylor on four of five targets.
Andre Holmes caught the only pass sent his way but it went for 10 yards and converted a third down.
Kaelin Clay was called for an illegal block in the back that negated a nice first quarter run by Shady. He had two passes sent his way without a catch.
Charles Clay was the focal point of the offense and he led the way with five catches, seven targets, and 112 yards receiving.
Grade D: Still need more from their wide receivers but Clay saved them some.
Richie Incognito gave up a sack that thwarted a promising first drive by the Bills. He had a great pulling block on a third and 1 conversion by Shady.
Jordan Mills gave up a sack on the first play of the 2nd half.
Dion Dawkins got the start for Cordy Glenn and had a huge fumble recovery of a Tolbert fumble.
Grade C: Gave up three sacks but some of that was Taylor holding the ball too long. Struggled a bit opening up holes for the running game.
Marcell Dareus saw very little playing time and didn't recorded any stats. He didn't even start.
Kyle Williams was called for a neutral zone infraction and was pretty quiet all game long just getting one assist.
Jerry Hughes had a great strip of the ball on Matt Ryan that was returned for a touchdown. He then got tremendous pressure on a Ryan interception.
Ryan Davis was announced as the starter for the injured Shaq Lawson but didn't actually start. He ended up with three tackles.
Eddie Yarbrough actually did start for Lawson. He knocked down a pass at the goal line in the fourth quarter and had four tackles.
Cedric Thornton surprisingly got the start for Dareus and had a tackle. He had one pressure but it was called back by a penalty.
Grade C: Didn't have a huge game but kept the Falcons at bay at times.
Preston Brown made a nice tackle after a third down completion to force a punt. He seemed very confused on the play that Atlanta scored their second touchdown. He led the way with 10 tackles.
Lorenzo Alexander was beaten for a 39 yard reception by Tevin Coleman to spearhead the Falcons touchdown just before halftime. He was called for a neutral zone infraction on the final drive. He had four tackles.
Ramon Humber had great pressure to force Ryan to throw the ball away on a third down play and force a punt. He also made a nice open field tackle with a huge wrap on his thumb that he injured in the first half. He didn't play too much in the second half because of the injury and finished with six tackles.
Matt Milano replaced Humber and on his first defensive snap of the season recording a tackle. He finished with three tackles.
Grade B: They were flying around making some nice open field tackles.
Tre'Davious White had a nice open field tackle on Muhammed Sanu to hold Atlanta in the 2nd quarter and force them to settle for a field goal. He had great coverage on Sanu to knock down another 2nd quarter pass. He recovered the Ryan fumble of the Hughes hit and returned it for a Buffalo touchdown. He was called for a pass interference in the end zone that setup the Falcons fourth quarter tying touchdown.
E.J. Gaines was beaten for a 15 yard gain by Julio Jones on a 3rd and 9 play from their own 3. He left the game early with a groin injury.
Leonard Johnson was beaten by Jones for a reception. Was called for a holding penalty in the final minutes that negated a sack. He had three tackles.
Micah Hyde had a great open field tackle on Coleman to save a touchdown. Had a nice interception of a deep ball thrown up for grabs. He then had a second pick that setup a big field goal for the Bills.
Jordan Poyer had seven tackles but a big miss that resulted in a big gainer.
Grade B: They held Ryan to just 242 yards. The great is helped by Jones and Sanu being sidelined with injuries.
Colton Schmidt was solid again with four punts for a 47.3 yards average and a 45.3 yard net. One was downed at the 2.
Steve Hauschka is Mr. Automatic from long range hitting field goals from 56 and 55 yards out within 1:38 of each other. He also hit the chip shot 24 yarder and both extra points.
Micah Hyde got the call to return punts with Brandon Tate inactive. He didn't get a chance to return any but had three fair catches without any issues.
Taiwan Jones return kickoffs for the Bills and got 50 yards on two returns.
Coverage Units Jones did a nice job downing a punt at the 2. They allowed two punt returns for just eight total yards but did allowed a 61 yard kickoff return that was negated by an interception.
Grade A-: The big return is the lone blemish and it didn't hurt them.
Sean McDermott has his team playing well as well communicating well and they believe they can win every week. He has instilled a winning mentality we haven't seen in a long time. He can be questioned for kicking the field goal when they had fourth and goal from inside the one but those three points may have been the difference in the game.
Rick Dennison had an interesting play call going for it all on 3rd and 17 on the Bills first drive. If they got half of it back they could have kicked a field goal. The way Hauschka was kicking they still could have tried it. The plan to get the ball to Clay was solid and they moved the ball well to at times to keep it out of the Falcons hands.
Leslie Frazier has his defense believing and their three takeaways was the difference in the game.
Grade A+: Biggest road win this century? That may actually be the case.
Falcons Game Preview