The Bills' 33-30 overtime loss to the Minnesota Vikings was an emotional roller coaster for anybody who caught a glimpse of the game, especially the final minutes of the fourth quarter or any play in overtime.
Those emotions, both good and bad, start with the players ...
Allen blames himself for the second week in a row
QB Josh Allen's body language spoke for itself following Sunday's loss. Similar to last week's loss to the New York Jets, Allen took the blame for not being able to execute and close out the game for the Bills.
"We got to execute better, that's on my shoulders," Allen said. "Again, four turnovers today, and three were by me. Losing sucks. It's just what it is. You hate to lose, especially that way."
Allen responded to Minnesota's opening touchdown with run schemes that led to two RB Devin Singletary rushing touchdowns and one 11-yard TD pass to WR Gabe Davis to put the Bills up 24-10 at the half. But in what Allen described as a horrendous second half, he completed 13/21 pass attempts for 182 yards with one interception.
And with 49 seconds left in the game, Allen mishandled a snap from center Mitch Morse that allowed the Vikings to recover the ball in the end zone for a TD to go up 30-27. While Allen and Morse both took the blame for this play, it's one they're going to learn from.
"First of all, Josh is an absolute stud," Morse said. "He's our quarterback, and we'll ride for him. And just the grit he showed out there to come out and compete with the significant injury just shows the kind of guy he is. He did that for us, he didn't do that for himself."
Allen and the Bills offense bounced back from the end zone fumble to send this game into overtime with a Tyler Bass field goal. With the clock and possession in his favor, Allen confidently moved the offense down the field during OT until a throw intended for WR Gabe Davis ended up in the hands of Vikings CB Patrick Peterson in the end zone to end the game – a play that Allen said was a bad ball and a bad decision.
"Kind of a double post-ish concept there," Allen said. "Harrison Smith took the over the route and I felt he was in a position where he could stop if I throw it over the top, so I just tried to drive it."
After the team's second consecutive loss, there is still trust throughout the Bills locker room, in the coaching staff, and in the QB.
"I've got his back no matter how it shakes out," WR Stefon Diggs said. "Our quarterback gives a lot of effort and at the end of the game, you saw him lead us all the way down the field. So especially taking the positives from it, he's going to hate it for 24 hours, but I've got his back."
And in turn, Allen takes responsibility to turn this loss around and regroup for next week.
"Making the right decisions, making the right throws, putting our best foot forward in practice," Allen said. "This one's gonna suck watching. Only way's forward."
Lewis takes responsibility
Cam Lewis, who usually plays the cornerback position in the Bills secondary, got his first start at safety on Sunday afternoon.
Coming out of the fourth quarter's two-minute warning, Lewis found himself covering Vikings WR Justin Jefferson - who often got his way on plays throughout the game. And that was the case on fourth and 18, when QB Kirk Cousins was able to complete a deep 32-yard pass to Jefferson after Lewis went for the interception instead of knocking the ball away.
"I honestly thought it was over his head but just gotta be aware of the situation," Lewis said. "It was fourth and 22, just knock the ball down bro."
"I'm not a selfish player, don't try to be a selfish player, always trying to put the team before me," Lewis added. "Just gotta knock the ball down plain and simple."
Head coach Sean McDermott still believes in Lewis, who he said made good plays throughout the course of the game as well.
And whether it's special teams, safety, or cornerback, Lewis is excited for every opportunity he can get. Any game for the former UB Bull is another chance to go out and play his best football, and that mindset doesn't change after Sunday's game.
"I felt like I did decent, I had some mistakes here and there being new to the position," Lewis said. "I'm still a pro and I gotta make these plays, man, plain and simple."
Scroll for the best game photos as the Buffalo Bills take on the Minnesota Vikings in Week 10.
Miller remains optimistic
It's tough handling any loss and this one might sting a little more than usual in the Bills locker room. But LB Von Miller feels comfortable where his team - which he expressed is filled with great talent - is at. This isn't the first time this team has faced adversity this season, and Miller is excited to see how his teammates respond to overcome that adversity.
"Games like this build character, adversity builds character, and all of these guys are high character guys in there," Miller said. "There is no blueprint to beating us. They just came out there, and they played great football, and they won the game."
It all starts with learning from this loss and to do so, Miller isn't going to let this Vikings team beat him twice.
"I'm not gonna let a team beat me in the game and then go into the week and I'm still letting the loss drag me down," Miller said. "I'm a professional football player, and it happens. I think the standard is so high we expect to win every single game and that's how it should be."
Miller feels that the 6-3 Bills are in a good spot and they're not going to let this loss destroy what they still have left to prove. With seven games remaining in the regular season, there's still time for the Bills to rebound from these back-to-back losses and that time starts this week in practice in preparation for a tough Cleveland Browns team.
"We still got Josh Allen, and this great defense, and we got Bills Mafia behind us, "Miller said. "I pray and I hope that guys think it's over right now. I pray and I hope that guys feel like it's done, and they got us figured out because they'll be up for a rude awakening."