Sunday Night wrap-up: Josh Allen leads Bills to playoffs

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There are a number of things that Josh Allen cannot do, or at least not yet.

But we know he can run, and he’s showing a certain timeliness, and at the moment, the Bills will take it.

The second-year quarterback led the Bills to a 17-10 win over the Steelers, clinching their playoff spot in the process.

Allen threw for a touchdown and ran for one, making just enough plays against a Steelers defense that hasn’t allowed many lately.

Allen finished the night 13-of-25 passing for 139 yards, with a touchdown and an interception. His accuracy isn’t such that he can carry them conventionally. But taking advantage of a turnover and using his big frame to run in (his ninth rushing touchdown of the year and 17th of his career) has worked.

He might lack polish as a passer, and that’s going to keep the margins very small for them. The Bills had scored 274 points in their first 13 games (21.1 per game), but 68 of them came in two games against the Dolphins. Take that out of the equation, and the 18.7 per game is probably a better indication of where they are.

That will make it harder for them to succeed against teams that can move the ball more efficiently, but the Bills have now won 10 games the hard way.

Here are five more things we learned during Sunday Night Football:

1. Bills cornerback Tre'Davious White came back from an early shoulder injury in a big way, and made it clear he’s one of the top cover corners in the game.

His trip to the medical tent proved not to be a big deal, but he had an interception before and after that visit, and they were significant.

White’s now tied for the NFL lead in interceptions with six, matching New England’s Stephon Gilmore (who also had two Sunday against the Bengals).

And while he doesn’t get the attention of his Patriots counterpart, he’s every much the factor in offensive game-planning, or he should be.

2. Steelers outside linebacker T.J. Watt can fill up a stat sheet, and he might have a future as a fighter.

Watt finished the game with half a sack, two quarterback hits, two tackles for loss, breaking up a pass and forcing a fumble.

But one play he didn’t make suggested a future in another sport. He tried to punch the ball away from Allen in the fourth quarter, and even though he missed, you could tell the man could box if he wanted.

3. Not many teams have future Hall of Fame running backs as backups.

But the Bills might have run the risk of going to theirs too quickly.

Frank Gore became a more prominent part of the Bills offense after a Devin Singletary fumble, and ordinarily that’s not anything you’d be opposed to.

But Singletary has proven why he’s getting the bulk of the work instead of Gore lately. He was averaging 5.6 yards per attempt going into the game.

Gore doesn’t need to be given any honorary degrees at this point — he’s earned his respect. Singletary has also earned the chance to make more big plays, even though he’s been making them for a short time.

They didn’t leave him in the doghouse for long, and he finished with 21 carries for 87 yards. But they can’t afford to keep him off the field for long, if they’re going to contend with teams that can score.

4. Steelers right tackle Matt Feiler won’t score fantasy points, but he saved the Steelers four real ones.

He prevented a touchdown by knocking White out of bounds on his second touchdown, forcing the Bills to eventually settle for a field goal.

It was a huge swing on a night when offense was hard to come by, and the Steelers benefitted from his hustle.

5. Every game, there’s some call that makes you wonder if the guys wearing stripes are watching.

In the second quarter, Bills linebacker Tremaine Edmunds called for a facemask penalty, which was fine except for one thing. He had Steelers running back Kerrith Whyte by the jersey as he dragged him to the ground, never making contact with Whyte’s helmet.

The call was later charged to cornerback Kevin Johnson, but he went in with his shoulders lowered and didn’t appear to grab White’s facemask either.

The league has promised a top-down review of its officiating operation this offseason, and they need to, because it’s a conversation far too often.

75 responses to “Sunday Night wrap-up: Josh Allen leads Bills to playoffs

  1. Way to go Josh there’s nothing better than beating the Steelers!! Washed up organization who’s seen it’s best years. Hey Pittsburgh fans you just lost to Buffalo at home…Oh the horror Wahahahahahahahahahaha

  2. how about a phantom holding call against buffalo on 3rd and 7 on a run up the middle that went for -1 yard. that gave the steelers a 4th timeout, and a legitimate chance to tie the game with 1:31 on the clock, instead of it being under a minute when they got the ball back

  3. Congratulations Bills fans, you have a very solid team and definitely some competition for NE until Miami gets a few drafts completed. Josh Allen is legit and the future of the AFCE

  4. The Bills are lead by their defense but I have to say so far based on common opponents, Josh Allen > Sam Darnold.

  5. Huge Steelers’ fan here. First off, congrats to the Bills for securing a playoff spot. The Steelers can’t expect to have the D win week and week out, you at least need something that can somewhat pass as an offense. I get that they have a lot of injuries on O but, my goodness, I would think a QB, at any level, should be able to see guys who are wide open. That said, when your primary game plan calls for 5 yard dump offs, and never using the middle of the field, you ain’t winning many ballgames. Duck is a great story, but I don’t see him developing into the next great QB threat. I’m happy the team has a good D foundation for next year but, they are going nowhere fast with Duck or Rudolph at QB. IMO

  6. Good old school defensive struggle. The defenses more or less being equal, the putrid Steelers offense broke the tie.

  7. Congratulations to the Bills. It was a hard fought game. So Duck killed the Steelers with 4 interceptions. So who will be the quarterback next week for the Steelers?

  8. Steelers would be a solid team if Ben had been playing all season. The D is pretty darn good right now also.
    Look for the Steelers to be a force next season as long as they keep the team together.
    Between them and the Ravens it will be a dogfight as normal

  9. Lets keep it 100 The Bills DEFENSE leads them to the playoffs. Bills Rank 3rd on the league in total Defense while the Offense is Rank 20th, On the other hand you have to feel bad for the Steelers defense who is currently rank 5th and deserve a better faith since if they had anything resembling a serviceable QB they win this game, The Steelers had 5 turnovers and only lost by a TD 17-10.

  10. I love those kinds of games. Old school football.

    Steelers D is legit. The moment was a bit too big for Hodges – it’s hard to tell if he’ll be able to be more than a solid backup, but he had some moments.

    Bills to the playoffs! Weird to clinch w/ a few games still left. Still a shot for the division – though a long one…

  11. The Steelers D is very solid, and Minkah is clearly a good player. I still say it was a bad move to trade away a first round pick for a safety when you so clearly need a QB.

  12. camstinks says:
    December 15, 2019 at 11:24 pm
    Way to go Josh there’s nothing better than beating the Steelers!! Washed up organization who’s seen it’s best years. Hey Pittsburgh fans you just lost to Buffalo at home…Oh the horror Wahahahahahahahahahaha
    ===================================

    😂 I know Bills’ fans haven’t had much to root for in the last 20+ years, but come on, I wouldn’t get over the top excited about beating a team that, at the current time, has a high school level offense. As bad as I hate to say it, the Patriots, even with their offensive problems will, most likely, bring the Bills back down to earth next week.

  13. dcpatfan says:
    December 15, 2019 at 11:24 pm
    AFCBEAST!!!!

    Hands down the Black and Blue division in the AFC!!!!

    AFC East vs AFC North
    Pats: 3-1
    Bills: 2-2
    Jets: 0-3
    Dolphins: 0-3

    Ravens: 4-0
    Steelers: 1-2
    Browns: 3-1
    Bengals: 1-3

    AFC N is 9-6 vs AFC East with the Steelers still to play the Jets and the Bengals still to play the Dolphins.

    How, exactly, is the AFC East the Black and Blue division of the AFC?

  14. Steelers are AWFUL. Terrible coaching, play calling. Completely unprepared, overmatched and outplayed. TOMLIN HAS TO GO!!

  15. steelpenguin6687 says:
    “As bad as I hate to say it, the Patriots, even with their offensive problems will, most likely, bring the Bills back down to earth next week.”

    Have you watched the Pats play against teams with winning records? Did you even watch the first game against the Bills? The Pats won by 6 and while the Bills are gaining strength down the stretch, that Pats offense looks horrid. I wouldn’t be so sure about that “most likely” comment.

    Congrats Bills fans. Well earned. You deserve it.

  16. edukator44 says:
    December 15, 2019 at 11:26 pm
    how about a phantom holding call against buffalo on 3rd and 7 on a run up the middle that went for -1 yard. that gave the steelers a 4th timeout, and a legitimate chance to tie the game with 1:31 on the clock, instead of it being under a minute when they got the ball back

    *******************************************************************************************
    No kidding the ref had his flag ready as soon as the ball was snapped.
    Did you also notice the refs always moved the ball half a yard up for the Steelers and marked the ball further back for the Bills.

  17. How is McDermott not in running for coach of the year. 6-10 to at least 10-6. With a AB who supposedly can’t hit the side of a barn, trading LeSean McCoy, losing Kylie Williams…no “no.1 WR”?

    Or Beane as executive of the year.

  18. So when Josh Allen gets Bills to playoffs it’s an achievement… but when Tyrod Taylor gets them there, despite being sabotaged by his own coaches… they ship him out of town. Hmmm…

  19. Tap the breaks Buffalo fans. You beat a 4th string QB and back up receivers. Yes you won the game, but if the Bills play like that against any other quality team, you lose by 20.

  20. george1859 says:
    December 15, 2019 at 11:47 pm
    The accuracy thing? Try actually checking the stats. He is on fire…
    //////////////////////////
    Your Comment. Rings to mind the old saying if three kinds of lies… “Lies, damn lies and statistics”

    When people point out his inaccuracy, it’s not the volume, it’s how BADLY he misses when he is off.

  21. Bills will win the AFCE this year and get a first round bye.

    ____

    The only way that happens is if NE loses to Miami in week 17, in Foxboro.

  22. Congrats Bills! As I was watching the game, I wanted the Bills to win.

    I had no business wanting them to win, but I couldn’t help it.

    I have liked the Bills for year, and always thought Bruce Smith was awesome.

    It should be a good game next week.

  23. george1859 says:
    December 15, 2019 at 11:47 pm
    The accuracy thing? Try actually checking the stats. He is on fire..
    ——————

    Watch the tape, it was not Josh Allen’s night as he was sailing passes over heads of receivers, which is easy with the WR’s the Bills have. That being said, he made the plays when it counted, which he has a knack for.

    and someone should have told the Duck not to throw at Tre White. I am a defensive guy, so I loved the game and all the different pressures and looks both sides were dishing up.

    Mike Tomlin is a hell of a coach Pittsburgh, so don’t Andy Reid him out of town. Incredible that they have found ways to win this year with what they have a QB.

  24. They need to get the ref’s to talk to each other and not blindly back each other up! The ref who called the facemask was behind the play. The line judge probably saw the play clearly, they should have discussed it and picked the flag up. ut how could that guy call a facemask when he was staring at the backs of the players????

  25. objectivefbfan says:
    December 16, 2019 at 2:16 am
    steelpenguin6687 says:
    “As bad as I hate to say it, the Patriots, even with their offensive problems will, most likely, bring the Bills back down to earth next week.”

    Have you watched the Pats play against teams with winning records? Did you even watch the first game against the Bills? The Pats won by 6 and while the Bills are gaining strength down the stretch, that Pats offense looks horrid. I wouldn’t be so sure about that “most likely” comment.

    Congrats Bills fans. Well earned. You deserve it.
    ================================

    Don’t get me wrong, the best team won last night, and, yes, the Patriots are playing some subpar offense right now, but they don’t lose at Gillette very often. Without going into a ton of research, I’m fairly certain, they have only lost around 22 home games in the Brady era, hence the most likely comment. It’s a tough place to play. Maybe a Pats fan can give us the facts on the record.

  26. Love the Steelers’ fans making all kinds of excuses. Like they didn’t play in the same league as all the much better teams. You even had the homer refs handing out phantom face mask calls and you still lost. Oh… but Duck got his usual one TD so when’s the parade?

  27. Its on to new England”…

    So much for crushing the Steelers……right troll? Bills play like that against the Pats and they will be toast. The Steelers were playing with their 4 th string undrafted QB and lost by 7. Bills fanboys need to relax …..they beat the scrubs.

  28. mrpkg says:
    December 16, 2019 at 7:15 am
    Tap the breaks Buffalo fans. You beat a 4th string QB and back up receivers. Yes you won the game, but if the Bills play like that against any other quality team, you lose by 20.
    _________________________________________________________________________________________

    No they don’t – they win ugly and that is their identity. They play within their means on offence, don’t turn it over often and play strong, take away defense. This team has lost to NE and BAL by 6 and 7 points. They had a tough one against PHI for their only double digit loss of the season. I don’t think this team is SB bound – but they will be be a tough out for anyone they play. It looks like they will play against the AFC South winner and I wouldn’t want to be in their shoes.

  29. codylaws says:
    December 16, 2019 at 8:31 am
    Not a fan of either team but let’s be honest Josh isn’t gonna take the Bills any where in the playoffs.
    ————
    LOL! Love the sour grapes. He’s a 2nd year QB still learning the game. 10-4 with 2 games left. He’ll be ok.

  30. Did you even watch the first game against the Bills?

    ____

    I don’t think NE is playing well right now. But the last 2 weeks, the Buffalo offense hasnt been all that good either and has been more about Singletary, that guy is really good. They had 209 total yards vs Balt and then 260 yards vs Pitts. So, not all that good. Allen has passed for about 140 yards each of the last 2 weeks with about a 50% completion rate.

    Now he goes into Foxboro, where the Pats are hard to beat. The game is going to be 17-13 type game, so its really anyones game. Its going to be more about which defense makes the big play or which QB makes the biggest mistake.

  31. No dog in this fight, but I’m super pumped that the Bills are in the playoffs. And a lot of it has to do with the internet being flooded with new clips of Bills Mafia and tables!

  32. Watch the tape, it was not Josh Allen’s night as he was sailing passes over heads of receivers, which is easy with the WR’s the Bills have. That being said, he made the plays when it counted, which he has a knack for.

    So what your saying is the alleged vaunted Steele’s D couldn’t stop Allen even though he only completes 52% of his passes? Please. The game is about winning. He finds ways to win. Even in his bad games he finds ways to win or be put in position to win.
    I’d rather have that. Marino could out stat everybody but I’d take joe Montana or Jim kelly every day of the week for being able to win

  33. MortimerInMiami says:
    December 15, 2019 at 11:28 pm
    Bills will win the AFCE this year and get a first round bye.

    Pats still win the AFCE, as long as they beat Miami in Week 17. That’s if Bills can get them in Foxboro on Saturday, which is a big if.

  34. fivechampionships says:
    December 15, 2019 at 11:50 pm
    The Steelers D is very solid, and Minkah is clearly a good player. I still say it was a bad move to trade away a first round pick for a safety when you so clearly need a QB.
    ————————-
    The addition of Fitzpatrick has completely revolutionized their defense and is a major reason why they went from completely average to top 5 in the league. Ben still has two years left, they have time to figure out his successor. This team is going to be nasty with Ben, JuJu, and Conner playing at the same time on offense to go along with their new look D.

    Also their first round pick will be in the late teens/early twenties at least.

  35. The Bills really are a fantastic team. After watching them closely this year, and seeing how truly awful the Raiders really are, I have no choice but to conclude the Bills are the superior franchise, and frankly, always have been.

    Let’s go Buffalo!!

  36. Not sold on the Bills quite yet. Allen worries me. He’s a solid front-runner, but I doubt he is the guy to lead the team back from even a modest 2 TD deficit.

    Beat the Patriots though, and I will gladly buy the most expensive ticket to jump on your bandwagon!!

  37. Vasteelerfan says:
    December 16, 2019 at 9:00 am
    Its on to new England”…

    So much for crushing the Steelers……right troll? Bills play like that against the Pats and they will be toast. The Steelers were playing with their 4 th string undrafted QB and lost by 7. Bills fanboys need to relax …..they beat the scrubs.
    —————————————-
    Your Pats won the last time by 6 points. Your offense could not score a TD against the Bills D. Your defense put Allen out early in the 3rd period with a cheap shot (no surprise there as NE cheats every way they possibly can) or Buffalo probably wins the game. You chowds need t to relax because the Bills are coming to your house to beat your under performing offense into the ground…

  38. Bills defense is clearly better than the Chiefs D. But their offense is clearly worse. Should be an interesting game in Foxboro. Go BILLS!

  39. As a Bills fan – I can say that the game last night played out about how I expected:

    A FIERCE Steelers Defense making life difficult for the Bills.
    A Good Bills Defense making life difficult for the rookie “Duck” (who I think will develop nicely).

    All in all – a good game on both sides.

    ~~~~~
    Re: the Pats…

    I said a few weeks ago – and I’ll stand behind those words still: this game could honestly go either way.

    The Pats are TRADITIONALLY the Bills Kryptonite – and they have arguably the best defense in the NFL – so the Bills losing to them again is COMPLETELY plausible.

    But…

    This Bills team fought the Pats to dang near a draw in the beginning of the season (16-10); and the Bills and Josh have definitively gotten better since then. The Bills D is getting experience and the team as a whole doesn’t know the meaning of the word quit.

    It would be a VERY pleasant cap to the regular season if the Bills could march into Foxborough and steal a critical win from the Patriots.

    Am I EXPECTING a Bills victory? Nope.
    But I don’t expect a masochistic one sided pounding from the Patriots either.

    I think whoever wins the game will deserve to win the AFC East…

    Go Bills!

  40. The Bills cannot win the division unless they beat the Pats (and then the Jets) AND the Pats lose to Miami at home in week 17. That’s highly unlikely. The Bills can, however, drop the Pats to the 3 seed by winning Saturday, assuming the Chiefs win out. Unless the Chiefs blow it with either the Bears or the Chargers. Hard to see that happening.

  41. steelerfanjo says:
    December 16, 2019 at 9:10 am
    Bills are not a good team. They barely beat a #4 QB.
    ———-
    #4 QB? Yeah that’s true. You know who else they beat? A Top 5 defense! This Bills D has made a lot of QBs look bad. Held Brady and Jackson to their worst performances. This will end up being a 11-5 team most likely. Nobody expected that! 90 million in cap next season. This is a Top front office management. They are a Top pass rusher, Big WR and a better LT away from being a perennial contender. #noezout

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