The New York Giants are just what the doctor ordered for a Buffalo Bills team that is reeling after a, I stick my neck out and say it, embarrassing loss in London to a Jacksonville team they should beat nine times out of ten. The Bills now flip the page to a home game with the Giants, who bring former offensive coordinator Brian Daboll back to his lifelong stomping grounds of Buffalo. We could also see the return of the Bills drought-breaking quarterback Tyrod Taylor. No matter who is on the sideline or under center, the Bills are currently a two-touchdown favorite to win on Sunday Night Football. To get you ready for a light night affair, here are my five keys to a Buffalo victory over the Giants back in Orchard Park.
Run The Rock
The Bills were never able to establish a run game against the Jags. This was a massive reason the offense seemed out of sync all game. Buffalo mustered just 29 rushing yards in the loss, with James Cook coming in at -4. The Giants are a perfect medicine to remedy this issue. Entering Week 6, New York is 30th in rushing yards allowed per game at 151.4. They are tied for last in rushing touchdowns allowed per game at 1.8. Whether it is Cook, Damien Harris, Latavius Murray, or Josh Allen… RUN THE ROCK!
Sack of (big) Apples
No team gets after the opposing quarterback as effectively as the Bills. Heading into Week 6, Buffalo has the most sacks per game at 4.2. Conversely, the Giants are allowing a league-worst six sacks per game. This should be a battle of hammer vs. nail. I’ll let you deduce which is which in this analogy.
Next Man Up
The Bills have always used the philosophy “next man up,” but that will be tested with cornerback Tre’Davious White, linebacker Matt Milano, and defensive tackle DaQuan Jones all missing this game, and much more. The players filling those shoes in the two-deep will need a quick learning curve to keep Buffalo’s deep playoff hopes alive.
Find A Rhythm
Buffalo started last Sunday’s game with these drives: three plays PUNT, three plays PUNT, six plays PUNT, and four plays PUNT. The offense felt out of sync and unable to find any sort of rhythm the first half, and even when things went well late, it was still “Allen do something crazy, some awesome stuff.” The Giants aren’t good. They’re 27th in yards allowed per game at 378 and 29th in points allowed per game at 30.6. If there was ever a time to fix whatever is broken, it is Sunday.
In the Bills’ three wins, they averaged 10.3 points per game in the first quarter. In their two losses, they scored three points total in the first quarter. The Giants are currently last in the NFL in points scored in the first quarter at just .6 points per game. It’s not that simple, but getting out to a lead and making the G-men catch up to an Allen-led offense is a pretty successful way to manage a win.