What was the Bills’ offense missing in 2022?

03/10/2023
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The Buffalo Bills’ offense struggled at times during the 2022 season, and one of the reasons why was their lack of production over the middle of the field. Quarterback Josh Allen seemed hesitant to throw to that area. This was due in part to a lack of trust in his weapons, due to interceptions or costly drops. The Bills also didn’t have the same consistency from their slot receivers that they had in previous seasons.

Wide receiver Cole Beasley had been a key player in the middle of the field for many years, but the Bills didn’t have someone to fill that role in a substantial manner in 2022. As a result, Allen often looked to throw deep or outside the numbers, which led to a more predictable offense.

Overall, Buffalo’s offense was missing the consistency and reliability that they had in previous seasons, and this had a significant impact on their efficiency and overall performance. If they can address these issues in the offseason, they should be able to bounce back in 2022 and be a more formidable opponent on offense.

We discuss all of this in this short segment below. Here are the main topics:

Highlights

  • The Bills’ offense lacked middle-of-the-field production in the passing game in 2022, which affected the team’s performance.
  • Josh Allen had a tendency to avoid throwing over the middle of the field due to a lack of trust in his weapons.
  • The lack of consistency in the slot receiver position affected the Bills’ ability to open up avenues for the rest of the offense.
  • Data from interceptions and drops shows that Josh Allen was much more comfortable throwing to the boundaries rather than over the middle of the field.
  • We analyze heat maps of Stefon Diggs’ production to show the change in the Bills’ passing game in the latter half of the season, as they began to throw more toward the numbers and boundaries.
  • Consistent slot receivers, like Cole Beasley, provide a “crutch” for the offense and allow for hot routes and site adjustments in the middle of the field, which are crucial for making plays.

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