ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (WROC) — The most hilarious thing about this Bills game is that they covered.
They were favored by 14. They won by 15 and made the final score seem like they were in driver’s seat all the way, even it it took a while to even get the car started.
Let’s be fair. They got pretty lucky in this game.
The Dolphins missed a short field goal. Then also fumbled away a chance for at least three more points late in the first half because they could not properly run a man in motion. A muffed punt in the second half easily could have been a Miami touchdown. Josh Allen had another patented Pitch and Pray that also could have flipped this game with Buffalo up six in the fourth quarter.
The Bills were just a couple of Smarties away from having their fans spend Halloween gagging on their gummy bears.
Luck isn’t often a part of the Bills equation because they have something that most teams don’t: options. To continue the Halloween analogy… if a kid is hoping to land elite candy, they’re better off with many different houses to choose from. When the Bills are looking for elite offense, they benefit from having so many different receivers to choose from. (Not my best work admittedly, but this is what happens when they schedule games on a holiday)
Normally, it’s Emmanuel Sanders and Stefon Diggs carrying the offense, but not this time. Give the Dolphins credit. They have two elite corners in Xavien Howard and Byron Jones. For the second time this year, those two guys held Sanders and Diggs to six catches or less combined. The Buffalo run game that dominated Miami in Florida was held to just 47 yards by running backs in this game.
When the offense sputtered in the first half, it was Cole Beasley that opened things up in the second. He totaled 10 catches for 110 yards with 8 for 89 after the break. I understand the WNY football world wondering if Beasley was losing his spot in the offense a couple weeks ago, but it’s just a matter of feeding all those talented mouths. The sharing isn’t an in game thing, it’s a game to game thing.
“We have a lot of weapons, so it makes it easier to stay patient,” Beasley said. “When you have a team with so many weapons, it eventually comes back around.”
That’s what, in the end, makes this offense so nasty. Allen is a super talented triggerman, but there are just too many options for any defense to handle. The Bills eventually outflanked Miami and did not even have Dawson Knox in the lineup.
There are going to be a whole lot more of these games for Buffalo the rest of the season. They’re gonna be favored by big numbers and expected to win by bigger numbers. McDermott was dead-on right when he said that “life in the NFL is about tight margins and records don’t matter.” I don’t think that’s a lesson the Bills needed to learn, but the reminder doesn’t hurt. Just ask the Bengals.
I’ve always thought one of McDermott’s greatest strengths is that his teams don’t dump dumb games to bad teams. His Bills went 19-3 against non-playoff teams the last two seasons. Winning games against doormats isn’t as easy as ringing a doorbell and saying “trick or treat.” Even if the Bills make it seem that way sometimes.
They seem to be the best ones at embracing the idea that, even if the point spread is hilarious, it doesn’t mean the game will be.