Don’t let the final score fool you – the Bills dominated this game in many areas.
The Bills erased a 16-0 deficit to defeat the Jets at Met-Life by a score of 17-16 to begin the 2019 NFL season. While the score indicates a tightly contested game, the box score tells a different story. The Bills almost doubled the Jets in yardage, 370 to 223, yet didn’t lead until 3 minutes to go in the game. However, the turnover battle was the story of the game as the Bills turned the ball over 4 times before ultimately digging themselves out of their hole.
The first drive of the game saw Allen sharp, completing his first 5 passes for 44 yards before fumbling and turning the ball over at the Jets 26. The Bills defense does its job and forces a 3 and out before Allen throws a pick-six on a dropped pass that fell into CJ Mosley’s hands.
The next Bills drive saw Allen use a mix of his arm and legs to get to the Jets 25 before a 15 yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty took them out of field goal range, forcing a Bills punt. The Jets proceeded to struggle moving the ball, averaging about 20 yards per drive over their next 4 drives. Allen certainly made his share of mistakes in this game, as right before the half he threw his 2nd interception of the game after moving the ball 30 yards; Buffalo then went into halftime trailing 6-0, having had 4 costly first half turnovers.
After the Jets defensive front forced a safety (on a play that did not appear to actually be a safety), the Jets had their best drive of the game heavily using Bell, culminating in a 9 yard TD pass to Bell. The Jets were aided by a roughing the passer call so they only marched down 45 yards, but it was their most effective drive of the game. The 2-point conversion was a busted play that saw Darnold heave the ball to Bell in the back of the endzone.
The final three turnover-free drives for the Bills served them well, as they traveled 50 yards for a FG, 85 yards for a 3 yard Allen rushing touchdown and 80 yards for a 38 yard touchdown pass to John Brown. The Jets had one final possession that ended with a turnover on downs, effectively ending the game 17-16.
Overall, Bills moved the ball on offense and their defensive line manhandled the Jets offensive line, sacking Darnold 4 times. The Jets got to Allen once. CJ Mosley was all over the field for the Jets defensively. Allen was able to move the ball well most of the game but also made some poor inaccurate throws. His inconsistency should define the Bills season. Aside from the one drive, Jets offense was very sluggish.
• Bills 370 yards (5.9 YPP) vs Jets 223 yards (3.4 YPP)
• Allen 6.86 YPA vs Darnold 4.27 YPA
• Jamison Crowder had 14 receptions on 17 targets; Bell had 6 receptions. The rest of the team had 8.
• Bills 128 rushing yards and 5.1 yards per rush (Devin Singletary 4 carries 70 yards) vs Jets 68 rushing yards and 3.2 yards per rush(Bell 17 carries 60 yards)
• Darnold was 0/3 throwing the ball over 20 yards deep and 3/6 throwing the ball 10-20 yards.
• Bills were -3 in TO margin (but were really -4 due to Jets fumble on lateral play end of game)
• Quinnen Williams in walking boot and CJ Mosley injured his groin
• Jets kicker missed an XP and a FG.tl;dr: Bills dominated the game but turned the ball over 4 times in the first half, including a CJ Mosley interception returned for TD. Allen makes some bad throws but shows promise, Jets offense couldn’t really get anything going and heavily used Bell/Crowder. Jets offensive line couldn’t handle Bills defensive front.