Week 2: Offense Showed Confidence In Victory
Defense added two big takeaways as Bills win home opener.
by Steve Saslow
Here are our position by position grades:
Trent Edwards took some shots downfield and was pretty accurate with his throws. He hit Lee Evans and Terrell Owens for scores. T.O.'s touchdown was a nice audible by Edwards on a 3rd and 1 play. He checked off at the right times to Fred Jackson and Derek Schouman. Edwards finished 21 of 31 for 230 yards and two scores. He lone blemish was a poorly thrown interception. Grade B+: His confidence is building everyday.
Fred Jackson has given the coaching staff something to thinks about when Marshawn Lynch returns in two weeks. Jackson did it all, running for a career high 163 yards on 28 carries for a 5.8 yard average. He was also thrown to eight times catching six passes for 25 yards. He touched the ball on exactly half of the team's offensive plays. Xavier Omon had two carries for nine yards. Grade A+: Is Jackson still the man in two weeks?
Terrell Owens got the crowd fired up for his first game at the Ralph. A great call was giving him the ball on a reverse on the first offensive play 13 yards. He did drop a perfectly thrown bomb but made it up for it with a 43 yard touchdown reception that basically put the game away. He had three catched in all for 52 yards. Lee Evans made the game's first big play by catching a 32 yard touchdown pass. It was his only catch of the game although he was the target on five passes. Josh Reed had four catches for 46 yards. Derek Schouman was a nice safety valve before he was hurt catching six passes for a team high 62 yards before succumbing to injury. Shawn Nelson had a thirteen yard catch before getting hurt. Grade C+: Still need more receptions out of the starting wideouts.
The line did a nice job as Edwards had plenty of time to throw on most plays. He was sacked twice but wasn't hurried too often. They also opened up nice holes for a running attack that had 218 yards and a better than six yard average. Brad Butler suffered a season ending injury and was replaced by Jonathan Scott who played well. The middle of the line played very well as Geoff Hangartner, Eric Wood, and Adam Levitre are developing into a nice combo. Grade B: There is a lot to be excited about from this group.
Aaron Schobel was a non factor after a big game last week. He had just two assists and had little pressure throughout the game. Chris Kelsay was quiet as well although he did have one hit on Leftwich. Marcus Stroud and Kyle Williams had really good games though. They clogged the middle to help hold the high powered Tampa running attack three yards per carry. Stroud had a sack and the two combined for five quarterback pressures. Ryan Denney had a sack. Aaron Maybin, Spencer Johnson, and John McCargo were all quiet. Grade B-: The tackles were an A+ .
Marcus Buggs played for Paul Posluszny and did a nice job calling the defensive alignment. He also had a big hit to stop Tampa Bay on a fourth and one play. He had six tackles. Kawika Mitchell brought pressure with three quarterback hits and three tackles. Keith Ellison was a tackling maching again as he had 10 tackles. Grade B+: The backers played a good game.
Terrence McGee had four tackles and did a good job in coverage. He nearly came up with an acrobatic interception. Leodis McKelvin left early with an ankle injury and was replaced by Ashton Youboty. They combined for six tackles and three passes defensed. Bryan Scott had a nice shoe string interception and did a nice job in pass coverage and run support in this game. Donte Whitner had the big play with his first ever NFL touchdown on the interception return. He also had eight tackles. Reggie Corner was in on three tackles and had good coverage skills all day. Grade B-: Gave up nearly 300 yards but there were 50 passes thrown by Leftwich.
Interesting trickery on the first punt return as Bobby April had the Bills try to the homerun throwback. Roscoe Parrish threw it across field to Ashton Youboty who dropped it. He picked it up and got 16 yards but could have had more. Parrish had 5 yards per return. Brian Moorman averaged 47.3 yards on three punts but netted just 39 yards. Rian Lindell was four for four on field goal attempts hitting from 31,43,27, and 20 yards out. Xavier Omon replaced Leodis McKelvin on kick returns after McKelvin left the game. He had a 26 yard return. McKelvin had one return for 24 yards. Coverage units were good as well. Grade A: Did the job on this day.
Dick Jauron had the team focused and ready to play after last week's debacle. Alex Van Pelt had another solid gameplan as they took advantage of the weak Bucs secondary for some big pass plays. Perry Fewell's defense were opportunistic. Still a big too many penalites but otherwise not much to gripe about. Grade B+: The team stuck together and believed even when Tampa was coming back.
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