Josh Allen shrugged off a pair of defenders and delivered a bullet touchdown pass with the casual nature of a throwaway. Micah Hyde hauled in an over-the-shoulder interception in the end zone.
Those were only on the first two drives. The plays set the tone for a dominant 47-17 win for the Buffalo Bills over the New England Patriots in their Wild Card matchup at Highmark Stadium on Saturday.
The Bills will either host the fourth-seed Cincinnati Bengals or visit the second-seed Kansas City Chiefs during the Divisional Round, depending on the outcome of the Wild Card game between Kansas City and Pittsburgh on Sunday night (8:15 on NBC). The scenarios are as follows:
· KC win = Bills at Chiefs
· PIT win = Bengals at Bills
The time slots for the Divisional Round are 4:30 and 8 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 22 and 3 and 6:30 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 23.
Buffalo has earned playoff wins in back-to-back seasons for the first time since the franchise went to four straight Super Bowls from 1990 to 1993.
The game was billed as a rubber match between two division rivals who had jostled for AFC East supremacy all season. The Patriots had won on a windy night in Orchard Park during Week 13, only for the Bills to respond with a victory in Foxborough only three weeks later.
Buffalo saved its best for the playoffs. The Bills led 27-3 at halftime, becoming the first team to score 25 or more points in the first half against a Bill Belichick Patriots team. It was also the first time the Patriots trailed by 20 or more points at halftime of a playoff game under Belichick, according to NFL Research.
Playing in front of Orchard Park's first full-capacity playoff crowd since 1996 – and in single-digit temperatures colder than all but one playoff game in Bills history – the Bills offense amassed 481 yards against the Patriots No. 2 scoring defense.
Allen completed 21 of 25 passes for 308 yards and became the first Bills quarterback to pass for five touchdowns in a playoff game. The Bills rushed for 173 yards, including 81 from running back Devin Singletary (who had two touchdowns) and 66 from Allen.
Knox had a team-high 89 receiving yards and two touchdowns. Emmanuel Sanders, Gabriel Davis, and offensive lineman Tommy Doyle also caught touchdowns.
The Buffalo defense – ranked atop the NFL in both yards and points allowed during the regular season – registered three sacks and two interceptions.
Scroll to see photos from the Buffalo Bills Wild Card matchup with the New England Patriots on January 15, 2022.