The Bills opened the season at home against the Jets. Buffalo won the coin toss and deferred.
The Jets took a penalty on the kickoff and started on their own ten. After the Bills forced a three and out, a good Andre Roberts punt return got the Bills started near midfield.
A promising drive got cut short when Josh Allen fumbled after picking up a first down with a third and 1 rush. Marcus Maye punched the ball out and Bradley McDougald recovered.
The Bills defense again held the Jets to only three plays and a punt and, again, the Bills got to start a drive near midfield. This time, the offense cashed in. A 17 yard throw from Allen to John Brown highlighted a 55 yard TD drive. The Bills got a break when the Jets held on 3rd and goal from the six to give the Bills a first down despite Allen overthrowing Brown in the end zone. Allen waltzed in for the score on the next snap running a bootleg keeper. Tyler Bass made his first NFL PAT and it was 7-0 Bills.
Buffalo again kept Sam Darnold super uncomfortable and the Jets did not gain a yard on their next possession. However, a Gabriel Davis facemask penalty on the punt returned backed up Buffalo up to their own 18 yard line for their third possession.
Allen needed only six plays to direct an 82 yard scoring drive. A 33 yard pass interference penalty (a gift courtesy Pierre Desir) got Buffalo moving. Allen showed off his legs three different times: on a 20 yard scrambling throw to Brown, a 15 yard rush after dodging a free blitzer and on the four yard TD to Zack Moss. Buffalo is firmly in control at 14-0. The Jets barely look like they belong in the league.
Buffalo’s offensive line has been pretty good so far. Allen has had eons of time to sit in the pocket and make decisions.
The Jets finally got their first first down of the game on their next drive, but a Jamison Crowder drop helped to force a New York punt.
Roberts 23 yard punt return set Buffalo up on their own 32 to open the second quarter. The Bills scored their third consecutive TD on a 14 play drive. The key plays happened in the middle when Allen converted a 4th and 1 and a shotgun draw. On the following series, Quinnen Williams jumped offside to help the Bills convert a 3rd and 5. Allen capped the drive with a slick quick out to Brown that beat a big Jets blitz up the middle. The 17 yard catch and run put Buffalo up 21-0.
The next free for all for the Bills defense got a couple guys on the board with big plays. Trent Murphy got a sack and Matt Milano picked off a Darnold pass that he tried to float in for Crowder. The Bills took over at midfield.
It looked like the Bills would get a fourth straight touchdown, but Allen fumbled on a designed QB keep. Allen tried to go airborne over a defender and seemed to lose the ball on the way down.
The Jets finally had some offensive success after that. Darnold hit Le’veon Bell for a 30 yard completion over Matt Milano down the sideline. Darnold then converted another third down with a scrambling flick to Crowder. The Jets moved 75 yards in all and concluded with a 31 yard field from Sam Ficken. The Bills went to the half leading 21-3.
The Bills opened the second half three and out. The Jets followed with a drive that only mustered one first down. Buffalo’s second possession reached field goal range. A Nate Hairston pass interference covering Stefon Diggs on a third down helped out (the call was a bit ticky-tack, but Diggs will get those). However, Tyler Bass missed a straight on try at a 38 yard field goal wide right. There is wind in Orchard Park today, but not that much.
Darnold took advantage three plays later with a 69 yard touchdown pass from Darnold to Crowder on third down. Tremaine Edmunds has a big missed tackle on the play. Jets closed to 21-10.
The Bills followed with another good drive. The big play was a 13 yard pass from Allen to Beasley that was pushed 15 yards further by a Jets facemask penalty. However, Bass again missed a relatively short field goal. This one was from 34 yards and, again, missed right.
Jordan Poyer started the fourth quarter by forcing a fumble on Jets tight end Chris Herndon. Jerry Hughes recovered inside the Jets 40 yard line.
The Bills do take advantage. Allen finds Diggs for a couple of nice completions, including one to convert a 3rd and 10. However, Allen followed by overthrowing a wide open Brown in the end zone and then throwing off his back foot into coverage. He was lucky the pass didn’t go 100 yards the other way. Bass finally makes a field goal with a 22 yard chippy and the Bills extend their lead to 24-10.
After another ugly three and out by the Jets, Buffalo salted the game away with a 63 yard drive that chewed six and a half minutes off the clock and ended with a 19 yard Bass field goal. During the drive, Allen went over 300 yards in a game for the first time. Allen made three impressive connections. The first was a tight window throw to Brown for four yards on 3rd and 4. He later found Diggs on a pretty touch ball for 15 and finally topped 300 with a perfectly placed throw to Dawson Knox where only Knox could catch it.
The Jets got a garbage TD run from Josh Adams after an 86 yard drive. Micah Hyde recovered the onside kick and that was it on a 27-17 Bills week one victory.
Allen finished his day 33 of 46 for 312 yards and two touchdowns. He also ran for 57 yards and a score. The two lost fumbles were the only issue on what was otherwise an impressive 2020 debut for Allen and the Bills offense. Diggs had eight catches for 86 yards in his Bills debut. Brown ended up with six catches for 70 yards and a touchdown.
On defense, injuries to Milano and Edmunds prevented them from finishing the game. The Bills had three sacks and forced two turnovers.