While I appreciate J2s enthusiasm in coming here, I feel like hes a little more pessimistic than the average Bills fan. I may be a little of the opposite, but hey. Nobodys perfect.
Ive been a Bills fan since I was 5. Ive been doing some amateur writing on them for 4 or 5 years now. Oh, and get this one. Moved to Baltimore last year. (Im the guy at the Mars in Arbutus wearing a Bills jersey on Sunday mornings)
Im going to go a little more in depth with my writeup here than my colleague, so lets start this
The Bills have picked up a REALLY high paced offense. OC Nathaniel and EJ Manuel are able to communicate a call and have it at the line with 25 seconds left on the play clock. Essentially the team runs the 2 minute drill the entire game. Your defense had better be prepared for 60 downs or more. Hacketts strategy is to give the O as many plays as possible in the game and grind the opposing D into the ground. And at times, it works. When Buffalo starts moving, opposing teams look confused and gassed on a constant basis. However, the flaw with the offense is that if the Bills O DOESNT move, then the O will go 3 and out within 40 seconds. And this has been the issue. Whether it be penalties, or bad play calls, or good D play, the Bills O has been stopped on 3rd down way more than any team should.
Speaking of bad play calls, Hackett is gaining a reputation in buffalo for his complete lack of roster understanding. The Bills run game has been...poor through 3 games. Sure, we rank top 5, but in all reality, 80% of our yards this season are on breakaway runs. Lets throw out a stat here. 10 for 9. That was CJ Spillers rushing total before injury. 10 rushes for 9 yards. And theres a reason behind that. Hackett has a nasty habit of misjudging what his backs. CJ Spiller is not going to get yards run up the middle, the same way that Tashard Choice is going to lose 4 on an outside run.
In terms of a rookie QB, EJ Manuel is both a saint and a satan. He feels pressure like a 10 year pro, and has the escapeability to get away. He makes most of the throws and has excellent judgement. And the kid is unrattleable. He was sacked 8 times last week and still stood in the pocket and delivered passes. However, he is also poor under pressure. Once people are in his face, he will stare down his checkdown. This means that he misses a lot of open passes downfiled looking for the backs and TEs. He also has a habit of throwing at receivers feet when the pocket collapses.
Really, there isnt much to say. Of our regular starting Defense, I have done the counting. There are 2 starters that are not dealing with injury. TWO. of ELEVEN. People see the 30th in defense and think we are bad. I see 30th in defense and I think its a miracle. What secondary in the league is giving up more plays per game than our 4th string and practice squad CBs? I feel sorry for them.
What you can expect is around the same as what youd expect from the Jets. Heavy pressure from the front 7. Maybe not as much as other Ds of the same style, but dont underestimate the Bills front 7. Mario Williams is a constant threat when not doubled up on. However Kyle Williams and Marcel Dareus are incredibly strong. I have watched them shove O linemen 4 yards back onto the feet of the QB with their jump. Lawson and Hughes are hit or miss at LB, but Kiko Alonso, our rookie MLB is shaping up to be a rookie DROY candidate. He hasnt missed a tackle all season. He has 2 INTs and a forced fumble. He is something special.
So Baltimore, ask away!