The Buffalo Bills enter Week 14 after topping the New England Patriots on Thursday of Week 13, 24-10 in Foxborough. The week went about as perfectly as it could for Buffalo as it moved to first in the AFC with losses by the Kansas City Chiefs and the Miami Dolphins. Buffalo now returns home to host the New York Jets as it looks to extend its winning streak to four games and even its AFC East record to 2-2. Here are the top five things I believe Buffalo needs to do to earn another win in the division on Sunday.
The Bills hit a rough patch coming out of their bye, going just 1-2 in the first three games after the break. The blame for those losses can be placed at least partially on quarterback Josh Allen who admitted he needed to be better for Buffalo to win. Well, he has been better, and the Bills have won three-straight games. During the winning streak, Allen has thrown for five touchdowns and ran for another while turning the ball over just once. It sounds simple, but if Allen plays within himself and does the normal (for him) Josh things and doesn’t try to force too much, the Bills will be fine on Sunday. If the Bills get the Allen who was the early MVP favorite, they should be able to hit the point spread of nine points in this one.
Get Gabe Going
The Bills, Jets, and everyone that watches football knows that Stefon Diggs is the unquestioned No. 1 wide receiver in Buffalo. What Buffalo needs is for Gabe Davis to be the clear second option. In games where Davis scores a touchdown this season, the Bills are 4-1. In games where Davis scores, the Bills are averaging 29.4 points, which would be tops in the league if done over the entire season. The Jets have done a great job against #2 WRs since their bye, allowing the second-highest targeted receiver to bring in just 19 yards per game. If Davis is held to under 20 yards, it could be a long day for the Bills on Sunday.
Keep Your Cool
The Jets will give away free yards with penalties, and the Bills should be happy to let them. Through 13 weeks, New York is 28th in penalty yards per game at 54.8. That number goes up to almost 60 when they are on the road as they are Sunday. On the other side, the Bills rank 11th in penalty yards, over 10 yards per game better than the Jets. Take that free first down and run with it if you’re the Bills.
Cook’ing with Jet Fuel
Bills rookie running back James Cook is coming off his best overall statistical game, where he rushed for 64 yards and caught all six of his targets for another 41 yards in the 14-point win over the Patriots. Cook is facing a nice matchup with the Jets, who have been beaten by running backs over their last three games. During that span, they saw Dalvin Cook (James’ brother) rush for 86 yards and a touchdown while catching three passes, David Montgomery ran for 79 yards and added three catches for 34, and Rhamondre Stevenson put up six catches for 56 yards. We know the Bills drafted Cook in the second round to be the all-around weapon out of the backfield for this team. Seeing that on full display on Sunday would be very beneficial for Buffalo.
All Gas, No Brakes
Looking at the Bills vs. Jets from 10,000 feet is like looking at the Bills vs. Patriots from 10,000 feet. One team (Buffalo) is built to score, and one team (New York) is not. The Jets have scored 21 points per game over their last three; meanwhile, the Patriots have scored 20.8 points per game over their last three. As I said, a lot alike. The Bills’ offense averages almost 28 points per game and is on that same pace over their last three games. It sounds very simple because it is: go out and score points early and often, forcing the Jets to play catchup.