The Bills After Week Two

Off. Pass Yards 190 220 203
Off. Rush Yards 115 218 154
Off. Total Yards 305 438 357
Def. Pass Yards 204 296 332
Def. Rush Yards 122 57 65
Def. Total Yards 326 353 397

The first column are the 2008 averages, the second column are the totals from the Buccaneers game this week, and the last column are the 2009 averages to date. Bills fans should have hope, but I think that hope must be mixed with a great deal of caution.

Reasons for hope:  The Bills offense looks improved.  They are looking better across all categories, running better, passing better, and producing a better overall offense.  Out of these superior yardage statistics, they are also putting up more points, from 21/game to 28.5/game.  To what should this be attributed?  Partially, this is a question of sample size.  We can only generalize so much from two games.  Secondly, the Bills have a new offensive coordinator.  Third, they have switched out receivers, running backs, and most of the offensive line.  They also have a healthy Trent Edwards, who was 7-4 in the games he completed last season.  (Consider the praise heaped on him by Sports Illustrated‘s Peter King.)  These big changes should give Bills fans hope that the offense can continue its production from the first two weeks.

The Bills rush defense is the other great reason for hope.  The Bills current rush defense is ranked 8th in the NFL, up dramatically from the 22nd rank of 2008.  The great fear is in the secondary.  Last season’s past defense was ranked 27th, and it is down this year to 31st in the NFL.  With an upcoming game against the league’s second ranked passing game, New Orleans will be the toughest test the Bills have faced so far this season.  After Week 3, Bills fans should have a better sense of how the 2009 season will really turn out.  The offense and rush defense should perform well.  I’m not as confident in the secondary.

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2 Comments on “The Bills After Week Two”

  1. Hannah Says:

    After watching T.O’s dropped pass and subsequent TD pass reception, I wonder – how much does T.O.’s mere presence on the roster contribute to the new energy and improved performance of the Bill’s offense? He’s been a mediocre contributor so far this year, and I’d take Fred Jackson over him any day. However, watching his teammates congratulate him on his touchdown so enthusiastically makes me wonder what more he’s giving us besides personal stats. Thoughts?

  2. sportsphd Says:

    It is hard to say what impact T.O. has. In some ways, he takes the pressure off the entire rest of the team, because he sucks up all of the media energy. On the field, you are correct: T.O. has been mediocre. He has had two big drops in two weeks, caught 4 total passes and one touchdown. Not very impressive. The best that can be said is that maybe he is more than the sum of his stats. Fred Jackson, in contrast, has been a Pro Bowl quality player so far.

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