The Buffalo Bills are looking to capitalize in Washington D.C. (see what I did there?) this Sunday as they take on the red-hot Commanders. After a week of heavy criticism and doubt, Josh Allen led the offense to an impressive bounce-back win against the Las Vegas Raiders. He stayed efficient and limited turnovers. Allen’s performance rightfully earned him his 11th AFC Offensive Player of the Week award.
In my previous article, I noted a few key matchups to watch out for: Spencer Brown vs. Maxx Crosby and the Bills’ front six/seven vs. Josh Jacobs. The Bills went 2-0 in those contests. The offensive line put on a clinic, and Spencer Brown’s play was a big part of that. Of course, he had some help. TE Dawson Knox led with chip blocks to knock Crosby off his pass rush. Needless to say, Brown was not a huge liability, which is all that we ask of him.
The Bills defense was stellar, forcing three turnovers and making NFL history. They held the NFL’s reigning 2022 leading rusher, RB Josh Jacobs, to -2 rushing yards! Who said that the Bills couldn’t defend the run? CB Tre’Davious White and the secondary did their part against WR Davante Adams by holding him under 100 yards receiving. That should be considered a successful day at the office in and of itself.
In Week 3, the Bills face an offense that is on the rise, and a defense that is not one to bat an eye at. The weather conditions may affect the game, so it’s important that the Bills ultimately win at the line of scrimmage, or else this game might get slippery. Below are the matchups that I feel are noteworthy as the Bills take on the ex-Football Team…
Matchups to Watch Out For
Bills Offensive Line vs. Commanders Defensive Line
The Raiders defensive line was a tall task for the Buffalo Bills because of the ferocity of DE Maxx Crosby. This week, the challenge will be even greater. They face a tough Washington Commanders defensive line that includes DT Jonathan Allen, DT Daron Payne, DE Montez Sweat, and the 2020 Defensive Rookie of the Year, DE Chase Young. In Week 2, their defense generated 37 pressures against the Denver Broncos! They are averaging five sacks per game, so Buffalo may need to use the same game plan they had against the Raiders.
The problem is that Washington’s entire defensive line is an issue, and you can’t put extra blockers on everyone. Plus, RT Spencer Brown and TE Dawson Knox, the dynamic duo of Week 2, are on the injury list. Brown was listed with a shoulder injury, and Knox had a Did Not Participate designation on both Wednesday and Thursday with a back injury. However, both of them were full participants in practice and will be available to play on Sunday. Overall, the Bills offensive line fared well against a chippy Raiders front. This week’s opponent will be another test.
Buffalo Bills Tight End Production
On Friday, it was announced that Dawson Knox will play on Sunday but, nevertheless, Dalton Kincaid’s usage will be all the more interesting. In Week 2, he caught five of six passes for 43 yards. That was a slight increase from Week 1, in which he caught four passes for 26 yards. He seems to be inching his way up the target totem pole, and he has a 90% catch percentage! Dawson Knox will be a key player in the Bills’ blocking scheme as they consider Washington’s offensive line. Spencer Brown may need help again, especially if his shoulder is banged up.
Bills Continue Success on the Ground
The Bills’ production in the running game in Week 2 was on point, as they totaled 183 rushing yards and James Cook led the team with 123 yards. They will need to unleash it again, as there is the potential of bad weather in D.C. with Tropical Storm Ophelia rolling in. Also, due to the threat of the Commanders’ pass rush, it is imperative that the Bills establish the run so that their play-action passing game can be effective. They have to keep the Washington Commanders guessing.
Josh Allen Uses His Legs
The Bills’ running backs should get plenty of attention on Sunday, but we haven’t seen Josh Allen take off on a rushing attempt very often in the first two weeks of the season. I don’t think you can keep the beast in the cage for very long. The big man is itching to run for a first down! He nearly destroyed his former Wyoming teammate, DB Marcus Epps, on a QB draw. I thought that Josh could’ve bulldozed his way into the end zone, but he decided to add Epps to his hurdle collection. Watch for a Josh Allen rushing touchdown in Week 3.
Coming off of a dominating win against the Raiders, the Buffalo Bills are looking to establish consistency to set the tone for the rest of the season. They have some big games within the conference coming up, but they need to focus on the young, up and coming team ahead of them: the Washington Commanders. Josh Allen shut all of the haters up after he posted one of his most efficient games in his career, however he must continue to play smart if he wants to maintain a clean stat sheet. Next week, the Bills take on a rival team that may be looking for some revenge. Please catch my next rendition of “Jenna’s Outlook” in Week 4 as the Bills head back home to face the Miami Dolphins!
Featured Image Credit: USA TODAY