Last week was a tough loss for the Buffalo Bills, but they need to move past it and focus on the game this week. Even though this game isn’t divisional or even a conference game, it is still extremely important. The Bills will travel to Tampa Bay to have their first meeting with Tom Brady since he left New England. Not only do the Bills need this game to have a chance to win the division, but also, they need this win to make the playoffs.
Brady absolutely loves to check down the ball to his running backs and throw the ball to his tight ends in the red zone. Both of these assignments will be on the linebackers. Matt Milano will have the hardest assignment in guarding Rob Gronkowski in man coverage. Brady loves to get the ball to Gronk and will almost force it to him in the red zone. Milano is good in coverage and will need to be right on Gronk at all times. Since Gronk has come back from injury, he hasn’t seen below eight targets in a game. Milano will have his hands full with Gronk all afternoon.
Tremaine Edmunds will be responsible for watching the backs out of the backfield. Leonard Fournette has been a larger part of the passing game since the Bucs’ bye week. Averaging 7.75 targets per game during that stretch. He hasn’t been as productive in the run game during that time averaging just over 56 yards a game. With him being more of a threat in the passing game as of late, Edmunds will have to play sideline to sideline. He will have to always be ready for Brady to check it down to Fournette.
The Buccaneers’ secondary has had some injury issues. Their starting safeties are both questionable, and they didn’t practice Wednesday. Along with Richard Sherman being on injury reserve, this is a recipe for the Bills wide receivers to have a big day. The receivers all start with Stefon Diggs. The Bills need to get Diggs going early this game. Expect to see him get at least six or seven targets in the first half this week.
Once the Bills get Diggs going, the flood gates open. Make the Bucs focus on Diggs. Then the rest of the passing offense opens up. Dawson Knox will end up being a large part of the offense in the red zone this week, expect to see him get a lot of red zone targets on flat routes and some stuff over the middle. This is a huge week for the Bills, and they need to play well in all three facets of the game. If the Bills linebackers can keep Brady from getting the ball out fast and let our defensive line get some pressure, this should be a good week for the Buffalo Bills.