Bills at 0-6 Will Be No Pushover

October 28th, 2010 by Lee Eldridge

Buffalo Bills Quarterback Ryan FitzpatrickThe Buffalo Bills are in their first year under new head coach Chan Gailey. I’m sure you remember Chan. He was Herm’s offensive coordinator in 2008, retained by Todd Haley, only to be fired a couple weeks before the 2009 regular season. I like Gailey, though he was certainly a surprise pick by the Bills this year. He’s a creative offensive mind. He cut starting quarterback Trent Edwards a few weeks ago, and under their new starting quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick, the Bills offense has shown signs of life. Last week they put up 34 points at Baltimore against a very good Ravens’ defense.

Bills Offense / Chiefs Defense
A quick look at the numbers and you see why Gailey made the switch at quarterback. In two games, Edwards put up only 17 points (8.5 points per game). And in four games with Fitzpatrick, the Bills have scored 104 points (26 points per game). A Harvard graduate, Ryan’s got a quarterback rating of 102.2. (I just picked him up for my fantasy team as my backup quarterback.) Buffalo is also rushing the ball fairly effectively as they’re ranked #15 in the league with about 110 yards rushing per game. The Bills have some decent skill players with Lee Evans and Fred Jackson. And you don’t think that Chan Gailey won’t be extra motivated to have his offense humming against the Chiefs?

This will be an interesting test for Kansas City’s defense. The Chiefs are making that transition from underdog to division leader. And they’ll be facing a pesky and balanced offense capable of scoring some points. The Chiefs allowed the Jags to hang around for a half before pulling away. But the Bills are better offensively than the Jags. The Chiefs are not getting enough pressure on the quarterback, and are capable of giving up big plays in the passing game.

Chiefs Offense / Bills Defense
As a Chiefs fan, this is a match made in heaven. The Chiefs are not only leading the league in rushing, they’re doing so by a significant margin. The Chiefs are averaging 176.5 yards per game on the ground. In second place are the Jets at 159.2 yards per game. Only the Texans average a little more per rush than Kansas City. The Chiefs are creative in the running game. Both Thomas Jones and Jamaal Charles have proven effective running between the tackles and taking the ball outside. Mix in a little Dexter McCluster and this could be a nightmare for the Bills. Why? Because they Bills are the WORST team in the league against the run. They’re giving up 174.5 yards per game on the ground, which is 17 more yards than the Bucs who are the second worst team against the run. Hhhmm, what do you suppose the Chiefs’ strategy will be against the Bills?

Technically the Bills are ranked #9 against the pass, but this is very misleading. Why would you bother passing against the Bills when you can run against this defense?

Keys To The Game
The Chiefs will run the ball and control the clock. It’s difficult to imagine that the Bills will all of a sudden become effective against the run, against the Chiefs, at Arrowhead stadium. The key becomes the Chiefs defense against Fitzpatrick. The Chiefs defense is ranked #25 against the pass, and Fitzpatrick is a smart enough quarterback to find some openings. This game worries me a bit. Actually worries me more than the game against the Jags last week. In the NFL, every week you get an upset. And the Bills are going to find a way to win a couple games this year. Just hoping it’s not this week.

Prediction: Chiefs 27, Bills 24

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