Monday Morning Breakdown

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Eric Wood | 5 opinions on Buffalo's evolution in Week 9

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Ryan Bates (71) spike after Zack Moss (20) touchdown. Buffalo Bills vs Seattle Seahawks, November 8, 2020 at Bills Stadium. Photo by Bill Wippert

1. Airing it out was the right choice

The NFL is a week to week league. Last week, the Bills showed how effective their run game could be if they dedicate to it. This week the Bills decided they were going to attack the Seahawks and their 32nd ranked pass defense early and often. Josh Allen started the game extremely hot in the first half, 13 of 15 for 154 yards and two touchdowns, and only two designed runs by the Bills in the entire first half. Ultimately, Josh Allen matched his career-high with 415 yards. He accounted for four touchdowns, three through the air, one on the ground and he didn't turn the ball over. So, this was a really good day for Josh Allen in the pass game.

2. Back to winning the turnover battle

The four turnovers were huge. Forcing turnovers has not been the specialty of the Bills in this 2020 season. But when they were able to build a lead, you then put some pressure on the other team's offense to make plays. The Bills forced two interceptions, had two forced fumbles and fumble recoveries and they were harassing Russell Wilson all throughout the game. They sacked him five times, hit him a number of other times. They mixed up looks, pressures, and just a very productive day by this defense.

3. Offensive line overcomes injuries

The Buffalo offensive line has been a resilient group with the way they have been dealing with injuries this season. You come into this game and you have Mitch Morse out already and Feliciano starting at center when he should be starting to guard. You lose Cody Ford and then, at one point, you lose Brian Winters, and Darrell Williams misses a snap. This is a day where the Bills scored 44 points. The line displayed great resiliency. Moving forward, it may become an issue where you have to have more offensive linemen active on game day. Maybe have more than your traditional eight, and maybe you go to nine linemen. I'm not sure exactly how they want to approach this but they're getting dinged up at a pretty high rate here and it will be interesting to monitor moving forward. In the meantime give credit to Brandon Beane for acquiring the talented back-ups and by Bobby Johnson for coaching them all up.

4. Pass rush continues to gain confidence

Hopefully, this game is a confidence booster for the Buffalo Bills. In the last few weeks the Bills have been rushing the passer better, and it's showing up. The effort has been there. Jerry Hughes had a big day in New York and now he's gaining some momentum. I hope that the entire Bills defense takes some momentum from this performance today. They got after Russell Wilson in a number of ways. They blitzed A.J. Klein who had two sacks himself and had constant pressure from the linebacker spot. The defensive ends showed up as well. Jerry Hughes with the sack and forced fumble and Mario Addison had a sack as well. The Bills were able to force constant pressure on Russell Wilson which led to turnovers. And anytime you see a sack show up, you have to give credit to the back end of the defense because it's all complimentary football. When you're holding up on the back end of the defense against talented receivers like DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett, then you allow your pass rush to get home.

5. Back on the road before the bye week

Next week the Bills head out to Arizona for another West Coast trip. Traveling west always adds another element to the week based on the travel distance alone. On top of the travel, the Bills will play a great football team in the 5-3 Cardinals. They are another quality NFC team and the Bills have one more week to gear up and put everything they have into the preparation of getting their bodies going this week. Then you get a week off to rejuvenate mentally, physically, because I'm sure this has been a stressful season with the routines and protocols for COVID-19 and everything else that this 2020 season has brought to these guys. It's a later bye week this year, so you have one more week to push through and hopefully go out west and get another win. If they are able to hit the bye week with a record of 8-2, I think the whole organization and Bills Mafia would all be happy with that.

Scroll through to see photos of all the action as the Bills take on the Seahawks at Bills Stadium, presented by Imagine Staffing.

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