Buffalo Bills Wild Card recap: Buffalo moves on in a close victory over Indianapolis
6,700 members of Bills Mafia flooded into Bills Stadium on Saturday to witness Buffalo's first playoff win in 25 years. In the most Buffalo fashion, however, it was a gut wrenching victory that had me in major mental distress. The Bills versus Colts AFC Wild Card game was a huge eye opener to fans around the league that the NFL still has the most inept officiating in all four of the major North American team sports. Horrible call after horrible call against both sides. Colts' fans do have a legitimate gripe against the league for how the game was officiated, and if Buffalo had lost, Bills' fans would have also have their fair share of legitimate complaints as well.
Here we are folks, the playoffs. After an MVP caliber regular season, all eyes were on Josh Allen on Saturday's playoff game against Indianapolis, to see if he could perform where it really matters.
Allen did not disappoint.
After news broke earlier in the day that the Bills would be looking to give Allen a "massive" extension during the offseason, he marched onto the field hours later and showed the organization another reason why he is worth every penny.
Allen completed 26 of his 35 passes for 324 yards and racked up three total touchdowns (two passing, one rushing) There were two times in the game where Allen seemed to have turned the ball over; Allen threw a pass into his own end zone that was ruled an interception at first, but upon further review it was determined that the defender did not have full control of the football. He also fumbled the ball in the fourth quarter which would have been absolutely disastrous for Buffalo, but luckily the ball was recovered by the Bills.
The league's best receiver in 2020 put his talent on full display this weekend, when he recorded 128 yards and one touchdown on six receptions. Diggs is coming off of a regular season campaign where he saw himself finishing with the league lead in receiving yards with 1,535 yards, and leading the league in receptions with 127.
Diggs was also named to the first-team All-Pro roster, and received his first Pro Bowl honor in his six-year career.
The rookie wide receiver was probably the most clutch player for Buffalo on Saturday. Davis came up big in a few key moments with beautiful footwork that kept many Buffalo scoring drives alive. Davis made two immaculate sideline toe-drag grabs when the Bills needed it most, and finished the game with 85 yards on four receptions, and a 100% completion rate.
Buffalo's offensive line deserves to be recognized. Without them, obviously, Allen doesn't put up the numbers that he did in this game. Allen was only sacked twice and hit six times against the Colts, and Indianapolis' star defensive tackle, DeForest Buckner, was only able to record two total tackles, and no sacks.
Buffalo's weakest aspect of their game all season long has been at their running back position, and the playoffs proved to be no different for Devin Singletary and Zack Moss. Singletary was only able to muster up 21 yards on three attempts against the Colts. Meanwhile his counterpart, rookie running back Zack Moss, put up 21 yards on seven carries before he left the game in the fourth quarter with an ankle injury.
While neither guy has been spectacular for the Bills this year, Moss had some bright moments throughout the 2020 season, so the loss of the young third-round pick could end up hurting Buffalo in the long run.
The Buffalo secondary
For the first time since Week 10, Indianapolis' quarterback, Philip Rivers, finished with more than 300 passing yards; 309 to be accurate. Colts' wide receiver Michael Pittman finished the game with 90 yards on five receptions, while Jack Doyle and Zach Pascal were both able to score touchdowns. The deeper you get into the playoffs, the harder the competition gets, and Buffalo won't make it very far if they can't get back to limiting the pass rush like they did so beautifully all season long.
The Bills await the results of Sunday's Baltimore vs. Tennessee and Cleveland vs. Pittsburgh games to see who they will be facing in the AFC Divisional Round next week.
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Have a great week Bills Mafia!