The Buffalo Bills have won six-straight games, the latest was a dominating win on the road at Chicago 35-13 on Christmas Eve. The win moves them to 12-3 and keeps them in first in the AFC and locked up the the AFC East division crown for a third straight year.
With two games to play, the Bills have their sights set squarely on earning the #1 seed in the AFC and with that, the automatic bye. Before we move ahead to their next matchup with the Bengals, which could decide that top seed, here are some fun “would you believe me if I said…” stats from your Buffalo Bills through 15 games of the Bills’ 2022 season.
Would You Believe Me If I Said… Josh Allen is already the Bills quarterback GOAT?
Josh Allen already has the two best years in the Bills’ history in passing yards at 4,544 in 2020 and 4,407 in 2021. If he averages 165 yards in his final two games this season, he will pass Drew Bledsoe for third all-time and give himself the top three passing seasons for a Bill. On top of that, his 37 passing touchdowns in 2020 are the most all-time in Buffalo and the 36 last year are second-best. Allen needs two more passing TDs this year to pass Jim Kelly for the third most ever. Also, we have yet to mention his rushing stats which blow Kelly and Bledsoe out of the frigid Lake Erie water.
Would You Believe Me If I Said… Leslie Frazier needs another shot as a head coach?
Leslie Frazier’s group is once again one of the best in the league, and it’s time he is given another opportunity to lead a team. After week 16, the Bills are ranked fourth in defensive DVOA (Defense-adjusted Value Over Average) which is Football Outsiders’ way of measuring teams. They explain their formula as a “system that breaks down every NFL play and compares a team’s performance to a league baseline based on a situation to determine value over average.”
If you aren’t into the advanced numbers and want some of the boxscore ones, the Bills are second in points allowed per game at 17.5. Frazier’s group is allowing just 104.4 rushing yards per contest which comes in fourth, and their total yards per game is seventh with 317.7. I don’t want to see him leave Buffalo because he is good for the Bills, but as a fan of the game, I want him to get the second chance he deserves.
Would You Believe Me If I Said… there is an easy way the Bills’ defense gets better?
I gave a lot of numbers above as to why the Bills’ defense is once again one of the best in the league, but there is a very obvious place they can improve: interceptions. During the Bills’ six-game winning streak, they have just one pick, and that was last week against (don’t giggle) Nathan Peterman. With the secondary getting healthier (yes, Micah Hyde is gone), they should be able to become ball hawks again. If they can shorten the field for Josh Allen and the offense, Buffalo will only get better as a team as the playoffs arrive.
Would You Believe Me If I Said… the Bills are dominating two of my favorite stats?
Two of the stats that I go to to see just how good a team is are DVOA (mentioned above) and point differential. DVOA takes everything into account, so it is a great way to evaluate a team, and point differential is the most basic way to compare how teams have done across an entire season. Right now, Buffalo is first in DVOA at 32.7% with the Eagles coming in second at 28.3%, and the second-best AFC team is Kansas City at 19.1%, good enough for fifth overall. As for point differential, the Bills rank first with a +157. The 49ers are second-best at +145, KC once again the second-best team in the AFC at +106 again the fifth-best in the league.
Would You Believe Me If I Said… James is finally Cook’ing on the ground?
We saw James Cook go over 100 yards of offense back in week 13 when he had 64 rushing yards and 41 receiving yards, but we were still waiting for him to find his stride in the rushing attack alone. He did that in Chicago when he rushed for 99 yards on 11 carries. Cook also added nine yards receiving on his one catch. The second-round pick also found the endzone on the ground for the second time in his rookie season. This was easily his best rushing performance in 2022 and is hopefully a sign of things to come for Buffalo.