Getting into the end zone was the chief goal for Buffalo’s starting offense as field goals had been all they could muster through the first two preseason games. After opening the game with a field goal drive Buffalo’s hometown fans wondered if it would be more of the same. Back-to-back touchdown drives however, changed the conversation quickly as the Bills passing game found life and the reserves orchestrated a comeback to overcome a 32-17 deficit and win in overtime 35-32 over Jacksonville.
“We did some good things on both sides of the ball. It was good for us,” said head coach Chan Gailey. “It was great to win in overtime. We fought hard to get back to that point and for them to be able to go out and win the game. That’s good.”
After the Bills’ defense sent Jacksonville’s offense off the field after six plays to start the game,
“It was a one-on-one with the linebacker,” said Jackson. “We feel like we can win every time. Fitzpatrick has all the confidence in the world. He saw it and I saw it and we were able to complete it.”
Five plays later however, the Bills were unable to punch it over the goal line as Jackson was stopped on 3rd-and-goal at the one.
The Bills defense then promptly followed with a three-and-out for Jacksonville’s offense with good pass pressure forcing an incomplete pass on a 3rd-and-6 by David Garrard.
Buffalo then put together its most impressive drive of the night. Starting at their own 20, Fitzpatrick turned to Jackson and
Jackson then had a pair of carries that went for five yards apiece to set up 1st-and-10 at the Jaguars’ 11. Fitzpatrick dropped back and spotted Easley coming from left to right across the goal line and threw high over the defense where Easley went up and got it for an 11-yard touchdown reception.
“We said all along we wanted to carry over what we’ve been doing in practice onto the game field, and I think we did a good job of that,” said Fitzpatrick, who was 11-12 passing for 165 yards and a pair of touchdowns for a perfect 158.3 passer rating. “Hopefully we can just build on it and keep it going for September 11th.”
The offense built on that 10-0 lead on their ensuing possession after Buffalo’s defense turned up the pressure on Garrard, including a third down sack by
“They ended up playing a ‘quarters’ coverage and playing heavy inside,” said Johnson. “All I did was attack his leverage and Fitz put a beautiful ball to the right right outside shoulder, which is the way we practice it. That’s basically all it was, a good pass.”
“It’s good,” said Jackson of the offense’s first half production. “We made some plays and were able to put some points on the board early.”
Buffalo’s 17-0 advantage was reduced by Jacksonville after an improbable four-yard scramble by Garrard got him over the goal line for a touchdown to make it 17-7 with just under four minutes remaining in the first half. The Jaguars added a field goal drive just before the end of the half with Josh Scobee hitting from 45 yards out to make it 17-10 at the break.
The Jaguars tied the game early in the third quarter (17-17) with reserve fullback Brock Bolen rumbling in for a two-yard touchdown to finish off a 10-play 76-yard drive against Buffalo’s second team defense.
Jacksonville’s defense then gave the Jaguars the lead (24-17) as
The Bills’ second string offense made it a one score game when
On a 4th-and-goal at the Jaguars four-yard line Tyler Thigpen hit
After winning the coin toss, the Jaguars received and Gabbert led Jacksonville down into Buffalo territory, but Josh Scobee pushed a 53-yard field goal attempt wide left.
Rian Lindell came on to kick the game-winning 40-yard field goal to cap a 35-32 victory for Buffalo to improve to 1-2 in the preseason.
“It was good to win an overtime game and to have that feeling and know what that feels like,” Gailey said. “For the guys to fight back… I don’t care if it was a preseason game I like to see that fight. If we’ll keep fighting good things will happen to us down the road.”