The Bills thrashed the 49ers on Sunday for their first four-game winning streak since the 2008 season and they did it by running an ideal mix of Rex Ryan’s beloved ground and pound offense and smothering defense.
The Bills ran the ball 44 times for 312 yards, which was 12 more yards than the defense allowed the 49ers to gain in a 45-16 victory. The team has gained at least 134 yards on the ground in all four of their wins and the defense has helped them to a 10-2 turnover edge in those games.
All four of the wins have come after the Bills dispatched offensive coordinator Greg Roman and replaced him with Anthony Lynn. The move changed the style of football being played in Buffalo to one coach Rex Ryan calls “boring,” although the results have been anything but for the team.
“I know it’s boring football, but we just want to win, whether that means we’re going to put it up 30 or 40 times a game or just run the football,” Ryan said, via the Buffalo News. “Obviously, I’d prefer to run. There’s no question about that. Maybe that’s the old school in me, but I still think you run the ball to win games. We know we need to do a better job of passing it and I thought we did today. The main thing is being efficient.”
The Bills picked up 6.5 yards per play on Sunday, which certainly qualifies as efficient, and it hasn’t been particularly boring to watch an offense firing off the ball to knock defenses back the way the Bills have the last few weeks. Keeping it up next week will set the Bills up for a big Week Eight visit from the Patriots in a game that should be anything but boring given its likely importance to the top of the AFC East.