Through two games in the 2016 NFL season the Buffalo Bills have picked up two losses, gone through two offensive coordinators, and rank near the bottom in every offensive category. A season that shined with hope has seemingly already put the Bills in panic mode as there toughest schedule is all but in front of them squaring off with the Arizona Cardinals followed by the New England Patriots. The Bills troubled start can be credited to numerous sources, yet the lack of offensive power leading to the firing of Offensive Coordinator Greg Roman leaves reason to believe the offensively need to pick it up. Roman who led the Bills in 2015 to the top ranked run team and 13th ranked offense overall will be replaced by assistant head coach Anthony Lynn.
“I think the spin in the offense is going to be immediate, some things that we’ll do from a tactical standpoint, I think we’ll see immediately. Changing the verbiage and playbook and all that stuff—we’ll pull from the same place. It may be an occasional play here and there, but we’re still definitely keeping the verbiage and everything else that’s already in place,” Said Head Coach Rex Ryan. “We’re going to put certain things out there. Sitting in the offensive meeting, already we’re talking about certain situations that will be played differently, challenges to our players, so we’ve already started looking at that. And I think we will be putting some of that into play in today’s practice.”
Through the first two games of the season the Bills offense is 24th in the league in rushing and 30th in overall yards per game. An offense with weapons such as quarterback Tyrold Taylor, Lesean McCoy, and Sammy Watkins have seen early dips in their production as well. McCoy has picked up 117 yards on the ground while Watkins has been battling injury to stay on the field. While on the field though Watkins has been less than his usual productive self-only accounting for six catches for 63 yards on the season.
“He looked good. I mean I know he’s out there battling. He has his own thing going on, as far as he played through his issue he’s got going on. He’s battling, he’s out making the plays, so I appreciate him battling and working each and every day,” said quarterback Tyrod Talor. “During the beginning stages of a long season, all season, it’s definitely not how you want to start the season off with 14 or more guaranteed wins, so we have to do whatever it takes to get back on the right track and get that first win and continue to grow from that.”
Perhaps the biggest x-factor missing from this team offensively has been its play running the ball. Having been thoroughly outplayed in terms of time of possession as it has been big play or bust so far this season including two touchdowns of over 70 yards against the Jets. Having lost the time of possession battle in their first two games 36:02 to 23:57 the offense just has not been able to sustain drives. A big part of the run game in 2015 came down to the legs of Tyrod Taylor whom ran for over 500 yards. It appears now teams are game planning for and beginning to figure out the mobile quarterback. “We just have to keep him in the pocket and make him be a quarterback. We gave up a couple big plays and one was broken down coverage where the receiver got behind us. But other than that, you know, I think we did a great job,” said Jets safety Calvin Pryor on Taylor.
Having already faced two of the top defenses in the league in the Ravens and Jets respectively the road for the Bills does not get much easier as they go up against Super bowl hopeful Arizona in week three and then the Patriots in their final game without Tom Brady. “Well right now it looks daunting against anybody. We got to get better so we got to look at the tape and realize it starts with us. We have to get better before we look at specific opponents. We have to get better,” explained Bills coach Rex Ryan.
On a Bills team that has battle injury and suspensions early on they will look to rely on the veteran talent of the offense in the upcoming weeks. Only two games into the season it seems almost premature to declare anything as of yet, but the Bills will need an overhaul specifically on the offensive side of the ball to keep any hope of ending their playoff drought alive.
More stories you might like