Bills’ Allen: ‘We gotta find a way to finish in the end zone’

For most of their game against the Jets on Sunday, it was not pretty for the Buffalo Bills, but fortunately for them, there are not any style points for wins in the NFL. Behind six Tyler Bass field goals, the Bills(5-2) defeated the lowly Jets(0-7) 18-10 at MetLife Stadium.

Buffalo’s defense made it a long day for the Jets. After leading the Bills 10-6 at halftime, Buffalo shutout New York in the second half. Ultimately, they sacked Jets QB Sam Darnold six times and intercepted him twice.

On offense, Bills quarterback Josh Allen threw for 307 yards and ran for 61 yards, but they were not able to score touchdowns, which Allen said is on him.

“It was a situational football type of win today,” Allen said after the game. “It took all three phases, but we can do a better job on offense, myself, emphasize there myself. We could do a better job and put some more points on the board and make it easier living for our defense.”

Buffalo had 422 yards of total offense on Sunday, so they could move the ball against New York, but according to Allen, penalties hurt the Bills, and Buffalo finished the game with 11 penalties. 

“i think we did a good job of moving the ball,” Allen said. “Obviously, the stats speak for themselves. We gotta find a way to finish in the end zone. It’s gotta be better on my part. Couple penalties pushed us back and put us in bad a position, and shoutout to T-Bass(Tyler Bass) for obviously making those field goals and getting us the win.”

In the end, a win is a win, and now Buffalo will host the New England Patriots next week.

“It’s a division win,” Allen said. “These aren’t always going to be the prettiest of wins, and we understand that, so we’ll take them when we can get them.”

This was a game Buffalo had to have, and a loss to the jets would have been inexcusable. With the Patriots struggling, and the Dolphins going to a rookie quarterback, it appears the Bills are the class of the AFC East. Now, they must continue to show it as the season progresses.

Jags’ Allen on Minshew: ‘He’s a superstar on and off-field’

Jacksonville Jaguars QB Gardner Minshew came out of nowhere as a rookie and played some solid football for the team last season. In fact, the Jaguars had so much faith in the former sixth-round pick that they decided to trade Nick Foles and make Minshew the team’s starting quarterback this season.

At this point, the 24-year-old Minshew is rewarding Jacksonville’s faith in him. After two games, the second-year quarterback has thrown for 512 yards with six touchdowns and 115.7 quarterback rating. In Week 1, Minshew was close to perfect as he completed 19/20 passes for 173 yards and three touchdowns in the Jaguars’ 27-20 victory against the Colts. 

Last week, against the Titans, Minshew brought his team back from a 13-point fourth-quarter deficit before falling to Tennessee 33-30. On Thursday night, the 1-1 Jaguars have an opportunity to move to 2-1 at home against the 0-2 Miami Dolphins. 

According to Minshew, going 1-1 against the Colts and Titans gives the team a lot of confidence as they prepare for the Dolphins.

“Those were two very good teams, two very good divisional teams we’ve played so far,” Minshew said on Tuesday via a video call. “[We] competed well, had a chance to win both. So, it’s just taking those good things we’ve done and building on those and then trying to fix the stuff that we haven’t done well.”

On the Thursday Night Football stage last season in Week 3, Minshew got his first victory as a starter, and “Minshew Mania” grew from there. According to his teammate, DE Josh Allen, Minshew is now a superstar on and off the field. 

“I think he’s a superstar,” Allen said. “But him on and off the field, he’s a great guy, great quarterback, and he’s also a special human being, and he’s just a guy that you just want to be around. He gives off that energy. My wife loves him, probably more than she loves me, which I’m kind of a little mad at. She thinks he’s a superstar, so I kind of have to check him about that. But that’s just the vibe he gives. He’s a superstar on and off-field, but he doesn’t give off that attitude, and I love Gardner. That’s my guy, G-Money. He signed my gloves, ‘To Josh.’ I’m about to frame this.”

Minshew is not a superstar at this stage of his career, but he is definitely growing as a player. He’s very confident in his ability, and the confidence is spreading throughout Jacksonville’s locker room. Thursday’s night game against Miami is very winnable, and if the Jaguars want to continue to prove they can make some noise in 2020, it’s a game they have to win. 

Jaguars’ Allen on doubters: ‘They don’t see how well we play together’

No one expected much out of the Jacksonville Jaguars when the season started. On paper, many believed the Jaguars had one of the worst teams in football. However, the Indianapolis Colts might think differently after the Jaguars’ 27-20 victory over Indianapolis last Sunday.

Jacksonville(1-0) got outstanding quarterback play out of Gardner Minshew(19/20, 173 yards, 3 TDs). Furthermore, the Jaguars were opportunistic on defense and created two turnovers. 

Even after this victory, the doubters are still out there, which DE Josh Allen addressed on Thursday.

“A lot of good players left our organization, and they really saw that, and they’re just like, ‘Oh, they’re weak now.’ But little do they know, they’re not in the locker room with us, they don’t see the guys that we have, and they don’t see how well we play together,” Allen said. “We’re a family, man, we play for each other, we play as one. And that’s just how our mindsets [are], and I’m just excited to get going again.”

Jacksonville will be tested on Sunday when they go on the road to battle the Tennessee Titans(1-0), who made it to the AFC title game last season. 

Allen discussed what it would mean to beat Tennessee.

“I feel like [there’s] always going to be that doubt when people think about us, and that’s just the status quo we have to change around here,” Allen said. “But we’re really focusing on ourselves and how we play week-in and week-out. Because we’re not really focused on the outside noise, we hear it all the time, since probably Jalen [Ramsey] left that we weren’t going to be a good team and everybody that left after that, it’s just been getting worse and worse. And now, they saw us play last week, and now they’re surprised.

“So, yeah, I think it’s a big game for us, it’s a big game because it’s a divisional game. It’s a game we must have. If you win, if you go undefeated in our division or any division, there’s a good chance you’re going to go to the playoffs. So, we see this as a big challenge because it’s a second divisional game, and starting off 2-0 in that would be major. So, yeah, we’re excited about this weekend, we can’t wait to get going.”

Defeating the Titans won’t be easy, but If the Jaguars can find a way to beat Tennessee on Sunday, all the doubters will indeed become believers.

Jags’ Allen: ‘I really do believe Leonard(Fournette) is one of the best backs in the NFL’

There is a lot on the line for Jacksonville Jaguars RB Leonard Fournette in 2020. Because the team declined his fifth-year option, the 25-year-old Fournette can be a restricted free agent at season’s end. Therefore, if he continues to play well, he can put himself in a position to make a decent amount of money in the offseason.

In 2019, Fournette set a career-high in rushing yards(1152), receptions(76), and receiving yards(522). However, in the offseason, there were reports that the team wanted to trade him. Ultimately, the team did not move Fournette.

The fourth-year running back has respect among his teammates, and according to Jaguars LB Josh Allen, Fournette is one of the best backs in football.

“I really do believe Leonard is one of the best backs in the NFL, personally,” Allen said via a video call on Monday. “This year, I really got to be able to connect with him off the field and know what type of person he is, not just player, but person. He’s changed a lot in my eyes, just being to talk to him more. We talk about life, family, and literally football every time we talk. He’s really a great person. I know he gets perceived as one of those bad words, but Leonard is a guy that’s growing.

“He’s growing in his career, growing off the field. As a football player, on the field going against him, I kind of hate it. He is a really big back who is explosive, who catches the ball, who runs really great routes, who blocks in protection extremely well. He’s just one of those really versatile running backs that’s going to be a nightmare in the league for a very long time.”

In reality, the Jaguars don’t have the success they did in 2017 without Fournette’s production. Jacksonville made it to the AFC title game that season. While some may question his attitude, you’re not going to find many running backs as good as Fournette. Also, a best friend for any quarterback is a running game, and with Fournette, Jaguars QB Gardner Minshew has a dependable running back. Like all NFL players, Fournette wants to get paid, and for that to happen, he must have another strong season.

 

Jags’ Allen on goals for 2020: ‘To be the best defensive player in the league’

In 2019, Jaguars LB/DE Josh Allen was impressive. As a rookie, Allen led the team with 10.5 sacks(most sacks by a rookie in franchise history), which helped him make the Pro Bowl. Now, the second-year player wants to do even better in 2020.

When asked what his goals for 2020 are, Allen had this to say:

“To be the best defensive player in the league,” Allen said via a video conference call on Wednesday. “That’s high standards. I had a high standard last year, and I kind of achieved that goal. But now, I set the bar really high for myself, and I’m looking to stay there and stay at the top, and I’m going to push myself as much as I can push each year.

“This year I’m not holding anything back, I’m coming in as best as I can, the best version of me. I feel like coming into practice with what I did so far; I feel like my game has grown. I feel like I’m getting more comfortable, but there’s still a lot I got to learn. I got high standards this year and just know I’m shooting for the top.”

For Allen to be the best defensive player in the league, he must do more than sack the quarterback. According to Allen, he wants to be a complete player.

“I feel like I work on pass rushes, but I worked on my whole game,” Allen said. “It’s so big to get caught up in the sacks – this is just talking about people in the NFL – it’s so big to get caught up in the sacks if you’re considered a pass rusher and I’m not trying to be considered as just pass rusher. I am trying to be considered a great defensive player.

“My main focus is going to be to stop the run, tackle for losses, plays that destruct the whole offense. That’s really what I have been working on. So, I have been working on just getting off my three-point stance as explosive as I can and things like that. I worked a lot of pass rush, but like I said, I worked on trying to be able to stop the run, tackle for losses, and be quick on my first step.” 

Allen won’t have Calais Campbell(traded to Ravens) on the other side, and he might not have Yannick Ngakoue(contract dispute) as well, so the pressure could be on him in 2020. Jacksonville did draft LB/DE K’Lavon Chaisson in the first round of this year’s draft, but he is rookie, and he won’t have a preseason, which could impact his production. 

Allen appears to have the goods, and he has high standards, which should excite the Jaguars in 2020.

McDermott on Allen: ‘Let’s recognize the work this young man has put in, and the growth that he has shown’

In the third quarter of the Bills’ 22-19 loss in OT to the Texans on Saturday, Buffalo was up 16-0, and at that point, many expected that the Bills would be moving onto the Divisional Round. However, mistakes happened, and Deshaun Watson started to make plays, including spinning away from a sack in overtime to set up the game-winning field goal.

Now, the Bills go into the offseason knowing they had a very good shot at winning a playoff game. Fortunately, for the Bills, their quarterback Josh Allen is still young and getting better. Therefore, they seemed to be set at the quarterback position, but Allen, who threw for 264 yards and rushed 92 yards and caught a touchdown pass against Houston, still has some work to do in the offseason.

“He’s made a tremendous amount of progress,” Bills head coach Sean McDermott said about Allen on Tuesday. “Let’s start there. Let’s recognize the work this young man has put in and the growth that he has shown. Is there still work to do? Yes, and he’d be the first to tell you that is, in fact, the case. The game did not end the way we wanted it to end, and the reason is because we didn’t play well enough in the second half in particular. We scored field goals; we needed touchdowns.

“You look back and say hey, we were up 13 I believe it was after the half there, we have a takeaway and we had the chance to go up 20 to nothing at that point. Maybe the game changes at that point, or maybe it doesn’t. There are so many things that he can do better, and there are certainly things that I can do better and our entire football team. I think if you take the right approach, that’s being accountable and taking ownership and I know Josh did that, that’s really where it starts. With that, he’ll put the work in, and you know he will be better next season. I think you’ll see another step this offseason into next season.”

At times on Saturday, Allen tried to do too much. Whether it’s taking a bad sack late in the fourth quarter or trying to lateral the football in the open field, the second-year quarterback was just doing too much, something McDermott acknowledged on Tuesday.

“I think it all comes back to, for Josh, just trying to do too much,” McDermott said. “That’s been something we’ve talked about, and that’s something he has to continue to handle as he moves forward and continues to grow in his career, and I’m confident that he will do that. I think that’s the next step for Josh, is that awareness, maturity; however, you want to phrase it.

“It’s the understanding that I don’t have to do it all myself. I’m a tremendous generator and playmaker, but I have pieces around me. As we continue in all honesty, to build the roster, that’s what we have to do. We have to continue to give him pieces that he trusts in addition to the ones he already has.”

Allen got his first taste of playoff action, which should help him moving forward. While he contributed to the lost, Allen had his moments against the Texans, and in 2019, Allen set career-highs in passing yards, touchdown passes, completion percentage, and passer rating, so to McDermott’s point, Allen has made progress in 2019.

Bills’ Allen: ‘I’ve got to lead this team’

   The Buffalo Bills(10-6) are back in the playoffs, and the man that led the way is QB Josh Allen. The second-year quarterback and the Bills will travel to Houston on Saturday to face DeShaun Watson and the Texans(10-6).

The Bills are in the playoffs for the second time in three years, but for Allen, who led all quarterbacks with nine rushing touchdowns in 2019, this will be his first taste of playoff action.

“I think everybody knows what we’re playing for, both sides included, it’s win or go home,” Allen said on Tuesday. “It’s the playoffs, it’s what we wanted, what we worked for.  Now we gotta go out there and play a game on Saturday.”

The last time Allen played the Texans in Houston, he left the game early with an elbow injury. Allen, who was a rookie at the time, felt that situation helped him grow as a player.

“Obviously going through that game there’s not great memories,” Allen explained.  “No one likes getting hurt, but having the opportunity to have Derek [Anderson] and Matt [Barkley] come in, learning from those two guys, it was a blessing in disguise. But having that experience of playing there, seeing a familiar stadium — the crowd’s going to be hyped up a little more being a playoff game, but kind of having a feel for that is experience we can take into that game.”

Fortunately for Allen, he will be backed by an outstanding Bills’ defense. Buffalo ranked second in total defense and second in points allowed, so Allen does not have to do it all for the Bills to be successful against Houston. However, Allen, who set career-highs in passing yards(3089), touchdown passes(20), completion percentage(58.8), and passer rating(85.3) this season, believes he has to lead the way for the Bills.

“I don’t have to be the best quarterback out there, I have to be the best quarterback for this team to help us win a football game,” Allen said. “Regardless of the circumstances that may go on during the game, I’ve got to lead this team and be able to find a way.”

Allen believes the Bills, as a team, will do everything in their power to move onto the Divisional Round of the playoffs.

“I can tell you this, we have a bunch of guys that play for each other,” he said. “We want to win, we don’t want to go home, and we’ve got a bunch of guys that are willing to fight for each other. I love this team, I love this squad, and we’re going to try and do everything in our power to extend our season.”

Bills’ Josh Allen discusses what he learned from playing against Patriots

While the Buffalo Bills are officially in the playoffs and have had a lot of success in 2019, this is still a reasonably young football team, especially at the quarterback position with second-year QB Josh Allen.

The 23-year-old Allen continues to grow and learn what it takes to be a good quarterback in the NFL, and it’s plain to see that he is making progress. After a slow start in 2019, Allen has thrown 15 touchdowns with only two interceptions in the last ten games. Furthermore, he has the best touchdown to interception ratio(8:0) in the fourth quarter in the league this season.

Last week, the Bills traveled to Foxboro to battle the Patriots, and anytime you face Bill Belichick and the Patriots, it’s not easy, especially for a young quarterback, and last Saturday night in their 24-17 loss to New England, Allen struggled at times but had Buffalo deep in Patriots’ territory late in the contest with an opportunity to tie the game up, but Buffalo would turn the ball over on downs.

On Tuesday, Allen talked about the things he learned from playing the Patriots last Saturday night.

“Just understanding certain types of pressures and what they are trying to do when they bring certain guys,” Allen said. “They looped their linemen, but I felt like I saw things pretty well. We went back and watched the tape, and obviously finding some completions early on and getting off to a hot start would have helped us out tremendously.

“That first and goal situation with a couple minutes left, we learned a lot there and what we can do and what we can’t do. Just more in-game experience that we are going to learn from, and I’m thankful that I got to be in that operation and had the opportunity to have that, but those are ones we have to have.”

The Bills played the Patriots tough in 2019 but lost both times to New England. However, losing tough games to good football teams is apart of the process of getting to the next level, which based on what we have seen in 2019, might not be too far away for Allen and the Buffalo Bills. 

Week 15: Bills-Steelers flexed to Sunday Night Football

The NFL announced today scheduling changes for Week 15 on Sunday, December 15.

Buffalo at Pittsburgh has moved from 1:00 PM ET on CBS to 8:20 PM ET on NBC. Minnesota at Los Angeles Chargers has moved from 8:20 PM ET on NBC to 4:05 PM ET on CBS.

The following is the updated Week 15 schedule (all times ET):

Thursday, December 12, 2019

New York Jets at Baltimore Ravens

8:20 PM

FOX/NFLN/Amazon

Sunday, December 15, 2019

Seattle Seahawks at Carolina Panthers

1:00 PM

FOX

New England Patriots at Cincinnati Bengals

1:00 PM

CBS

Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Detroit Lions

1:00 PM

FOX

Chicago Bears at Green Bay Packers

1:00 PM

FOX

Denver Broncos at Kansas City Chiefs

1:00 PM

CBS

Miami Dolphins at New York Giants

1:00 PM

CBS

Houston Texans at Tennessee Titans

1:00 PM

CBS

Philadelphia Eagles at Washington Redskins

1:00 PM

FOX

Cleveland Browns at Arizona Cardinals

4:05 PM

CBS

Minnesota Vikings at Los Angeles Chargers

4:05 PM

CBS

Jacksonville Jaguars at Oakland Raiders

4:05 PM

CBS

Los Angeles Rams at Dallas Cowboys

4:25 PM

FOX

Atlanta Falcons at San Francisco 49ers

4:25 PM

FOX

Buffalo Bills at Pittsburgh Steelers

8:20 PM

NBC

Monday, December 16, 2019

Indianapolis Colts at New Orleans Saints

8:15 PM

ESPN

Bills’ Allen on Cowboys: ‘Our defense is going to have their hands full, so we have to do our part on offense’

The Buffalo Bills’ offense seems to be peaking at the right time. In their previous two games against Miami and Denver, Buffalo is averaging over 28 points per game and 424 yards of total offense. Their QB Josh Allen is playing well, and the running game has been very effective. The Bills had 168 yards on the ground against the Dolphins, and 244 yards rushing against the Broncos on Sunday.

On Thursday, the Bills travel to Dallas to face the Cowboys on Thanksgiving, and while the Cowboys’ offense struggled against the Patriots last Sunday, they have a lot of weapons, including QB Dak Prescott, RB Ezekiel Elliott, and WR Amari Cooper. With those weapons, the Bills’ offense may have to put up a good amount of points against Dallas.

“Obviously, they have some really good pieces on the offense over there,” Bills QB Josh Allen said on Tuesday. “I know Dak [Prescott] is playing extremely well, and they have a couple of receivers. They have the running back there too that’s an All-Pro guy. Our defense is going to have their hands full, so we have to do our part on offense. It’s a complimentary football game. We all have to execute in all three phases of the game.”

This is a big game for the Bills(8-3) for many reasons. Currently, Buffalo is the fifth-seeded team in the AFC, which is two games ahead of the sixth-seeded Steelers. A win against the Cowboys would put them in a good spot in terms of making the playoffs. Also, it’s a nationally televised game; however, according to Allen, he is not going to treat this game any differently.

“I don’t really think it’s different from any other game that we’ve played,” Allen said. “I really don’t know the logistics of what makes it a prime-time game or whatever. We’re going out there, and we’re playing football how we know how to play. I’m going to trust the game plan that we put in, and just try to play like we’ve been playing the last few weeks.

“They’re a tough defense, and they’re going to be doing some things that we have to look at and continue to game plan for. We’ll have to make some in-game adjustments, no doubt. It’s going to be a four-quarter battle with these guys, and we just have to stay on track and go out there and execute as best we can.”

Defeating the Cowboys on Thursday won’t be easy, especially with Dallas coming off a loss. Allen and the Bills will have their hands full, but based on the way the offense is playing right now, Buffalo might have the confidence to get it done.