EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ (WIVB) – It was one of the strangest games I’ve ever seen. A duel with two of the NFL’s best quarterbacks didn’t go as expected. Josh Allen was out of sync the entire game and turned the ball over four times. Meanwhile, Aaron Rodgers was eliminated from the game and the season on the Jets’ first possession, ending the Jets’ Super Bowl hopes. There was a 50-yard field goal to send the game into overtime, a punt return touchdown to end the game, and Zach Wilson was the hero, it was a strange Monday night. Here are my 4 observations:
1. Allen struggles again against the Jets
The Jets defense did something few teams have done: It made Josh Allen look bad. In the last three meetings, the Bills’ offense has scored 16, 20 and 17 points, well below their typical output. The Jets are giving Allen fits, he has committed six turnovers, sacked 13 times and has just two touchdown passes. The offense seemed out of sync for most of the game, Robert Saleh’s squad seemed to have Josh Allen figured out.
2. First-down frustrations
The Bills’ offense continually operated from a deficit. Josh Allen was sacked five times, all on first downs. The offense faced a lot of 2nd downs and 3rd downs and long balls, which made the offense more predictable. The Jets have one of the best defensive fronts in the NFL and they made the Bills pay for it.
3. Diggs and done
Stefon Diggs had a very productive night, but the rest of the playmakers were silent against the Jets. The Bills star had ten balls (13 scores) for 102 yards and a touchdown. Maybe all wide receivers shouldn’t have OTAs. The secondary options were missing. Gabe Davis managed just two catches for 32 yards and was targeted just four times. Tight end duo Dawson Knox and Dalton Kincaid combined for seven catches and 51 yards on eight total targets. James Cook had four balls for just 17 yards. All off-season we’ve been talking about several weapons this off-season has, but in the opening game it was the only player who rose to the challenge.
4. Don’t panic
I said it before the season started: Half of the fans feel like their teams will win the Super Bowl after Week 1, and the other half have lost all hope. The Bills, Chiefs and Bengals all lost in Week 1 and should still be considered the top teams in the AFC. Allen’s turnovers are a concern, but it’s the give and take that you have with him that he’s delivered most of the time throughout his career. If you’ve lost all hope after Week 1, you should bet on the Raiders next week because if I were a betting man, I wouldn’t bury Josh Allen and the offense after Week 1 against a very, very good Jets defense.
Josh Reed is an award-winning journalist who has served as News 4’s sports director since 2015. More information can be found here.