While Bills fans have become accustomed to watching Josh Allen make big plays with his arm and his feet, I’m thinking Sunday’s meeting with the Steelers may have a different feel if things go the way the Bills hope they do in front of another roaring sellout crowd at New Era Field.
The Bills a whopping 14 point favorite over the Steelers, who sorely miss Big Ben on offense and TJ Watt on defense. Steelers coach Mike Tomlin has seen enough of Mitch Trubisky, pulling him in the second half against the Jets in favor of Pitt rookie and first round pick Kenny Picket. Picket did give the Steelers a spark in a 24-20 loss, but he also threw 3 int’s. The Bills D line, finally getting healthy again, should feast on the Steelers O-line to make it a rough NFL starting debut for Picket.
Let’s address the elephant in the Bills locker room. Josh Allen, despite his size and toughness, can’t be expected to pass for over 300 yards a game and be the Bills leading rusher too. He’s averaging over 6 yards per carry and just under 50 yards a game rushing. Devin Singletary is under 4 yards per carry as the Bills feature back, and Zack Moss had 6 yards on 3 carries in the win at Baltimore.
Bills offensive coordinator Ken Dorsey isn’t calling as many designated run plays for Allen as Brian Daboll did, but Allen is just too competitive at turning broken plays into big runs or passes, and Dorsey certainly doesn’t want to restrict Allen’s aggressiveness. But he does need somebody else to pick up the slack. The O-line loves to run block because they initiate the contact instead of retreating in pass protection. Maybe they’ll get more repetitions in this game.
Here’s another question I have. Is rookie and 2nd round pick James Cook gonna escape coach Sean McDermott’s doghouse anytime soon?
Cook fumbled his first carry against the Rams and after dropping a couple passes he’s in witness protection. He’s bigger and faster than either Singletary or Moss.
Back in 2017 Chiefs coach Andy Reed started rookie Kareem Hunt due to an injury, and Hunt fumbled on his first NFL carry at New England. But Reed stuck with him, and Hunt went on to score 3 touchdowns with 148 yards rushing and another 98 receiving. Hunt was a 4th round pick.
Obviously the flow of the game will determine a lot of this, but I’m thinking Cook is going to be busy as the Bills rely on defense to pressure the rookie and a pounding run game to help ease the burden on Allen. Gabe Davis is now the closest to 100 percent he’s been, which should also take some of the reliance on Stefan Diggs, who’s averaging just over 100 yards per game.
This game may be boring, and the Bills coaching staff is counting on it. Next after Pittsburgh is another trip to Kansas City’s Arrowhead Stadium, and that game will look nothing like this one.
The weather, finally, should be near perfect Sunday, and unless the Bills are peeking ahead to next week, they win this one 31-13.
Sponsored by... Team at the West Herr Automotive Group - Welcome to West Herr New York!
#gobills #bigweck #buffalo #westherr