ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (WIVB) – Resiliency was a word that got brought up many times after the Bills 35-32 win against the Rams. It applied to quarterback Josh Allen as he led them to a fourth quarter comeback for the second straight game and it also describes tight end Tyler Kroft beyond just this game after everything he’s been through.
With Dawson Knox out with a concussion, Kroft got more opportunities and he made the most of them ending with four catches for 24 yards and two touchdowns, including the game-winner.
“There’s emotion that’s been brought into this, re-breaking my foot, blowing out my other ankle so I mean playing on two bad feet last year there was a lot of stuff to overcome personally but I’ve always been taught you come to work every day ready to go, you handle your opportunities when they come and handle your business like a pro so I was just happy I was in a position to make a play today,” Kroft said.
It hasn’t been easy for Kroft during his short time with the Bills so far. Expectations were high after he signed with the Bills in free agency last year. But on the first day of OTAs, Kroft broke his foot, the same one the caused him to miss most of the 2018 season when he was with the Bengals.
Kroft missed the rest of spring workouts that year, training camp and the first two games of the season because of it. Then just as he was ready to make his Bills debut in week three, he hurt his ankle in practice the week of his expected return. He didn’t play until week seven and his story really hit some of the guys after the game seeing what he was able to do despite everything.
“Yeah that aspect of it got me really emotional, you know he’s had a rough go these first two years, it didn’t really go how he expected it to and had some tough injuries, Dawson Knox has been an absolute animal for us as well so things really haven’t gone his way a lot and for him to battle back and have a game like that and then win it for us, I’m just super happy for him,” Cole Beasley said.
And Beasley can relate to the roller coaster of emotions Kroft is going through.
“He’s just a good dude. We spend so much time off the field together and he hasn’t really had a chance to really be on the field that much and he was a guy that they invested money in and came in with me as well. I know his expectations were through the roof for what it was gonna be like. I know what that’s like, I mean I’ve experienced that in Dallas a little bit of having a big year and then expecting something next year. When it doesn’t go that way it really kills you man, it really does and I don’t think people really understand the mental aspect of this game, I mean the toll it takes at times,” Beasley said.
“But just the way he’s battled back and stayed with it, you know it would have been easy for him to just go in the tank and say this just ain’t it and he didn’t do that. He battled back and he made a lot of freaking plays for us today. And even the one they called the interception one man he went up and got that thing, I don’t know what happened on that but it just says a lot about who is he as a person. I love the dude to death.”