Eagles’ Schwartz on Allen: ‘He is running like a big man and running like a fullback’

After six games, the Buffalo Bills have proven that they are a pretty good football team. At 5-1, the Bills are behind the undefeated Patriots(7-0) for the top spot in the AFC East, and to Buffalo’s credit, they gave New England their toughest game of the season.

While the Bills’ defense has been leading the way for this team in 2019, they seemed to have found their franchise quarterback in Josh Allen, and although the second-year quarterback has not put up big numbers this season(1324 yards, 7 TDs, 7 INTs), he is doing enough to help Buffalo win games.

What he may lack in the passing game, Allen makes it up with his running ability, and last season as a rookie, Allen rushed for 631 yards and eight touchdowns.

Next Sunday, the Bills host the Philadelphia Eagles, and according to Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz, Allen is one of the better running quarterbacks in football.

“It’s not just his athleticism, it’s their willingness to run him on the football,” Schwartz said on Tuesday. “A lot gets made of the way [Panthers QB] Cam Newton played and the way that [Ravens QB] Lamar Jackson plays in Baltimore. Buffalo has sort of flown under the radar with that with a lot of designed quarterback runs. Stuff that looks like Wildcat, but he’s just running quarterback sweep, quarterback power, quarterback counter, quarterback draw, and he’s not sliding.

“He is running like a big man and running like a fullback, a lot of stuff that Cam Newton would do. They have all the RPOs. They have probably a more — complex really isn’t the best word I am looking for, but varied run game than any team we’ve faced. Some teams sort of take the approach of keep it simple, and we only do a couple things. These guys do an awful lot. They have powers, they have counters, they have stutters, they have zone runs, they have RPOs, they have jet sweeps, they have quarterback runs, and he’s a big part of those.

“And then you add into the equation his ability to extend plays and to run for first downs. I think that we have to be at our very best. It’s not just going to be covering guys. We have to play well in the run game, and then we also have to be good in our pass rush game to keep him from escaping or having step-up lanes and have guys in position to keep him from moving the chains.”

Allen is definitely a load. At 6’6, 237 pounds, he is not easy to tackle. However, if Allen really wants to make his mark in the league, he has to improve as a passer, which I think will come. For now, the Bills are 5-1, and judging by the way the Eagles have been playing of late, Buffalo has an excellent chance of moving to 6-1.

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Allen on playing Pats: ‘We understand what this game kind of means to fans and people around the league’

It’s only Week 4 in the NFL, but it appears that the 3-0 Buffalo Bills could be for real, and while you may say Buffalo has defeated two 0-3 teams, it’s clear that there is a decent amount of talent on this roster. Statistically, the Bills are ranked in the top-10 on both offense and defense, and they seem to have a decent quarterback in Josh Allen.

However, all of that will be put to the test when the Bills battle the world champion and undefeated New England Patriots(3-0) in Buffalo on Sunday. The Patriots look like the best team in football. Obviously, there is Tom Brady, who at age 42, is still playing at an elite level. Additionally, the Patriots’ defense is playing at an elite level as well. After three weeks, the Patriots have the number one ranked defense in football, and only have allowed 17 points in three games.

Many believe this game will tell us a lot about the Bills, but according to Allen, it’s just another game for Buffalo.

“Well, I think every week, really is a measuring stick. And, you know, we’re not trying to approach this any differently than we would in the game,” Allen said on Wednesday. “It’s the most important game that we’re playing right now because it’s the next one. So we’re going in with that mindset. And, you know, we understand what this game kind of means to fans and people around the league, but in house, you know, we’re just trying to go 1-0 every week.

“Doesn’t matter who we’re playing. But we know that this team prepares well, you know, they’re 3-0 for a reason they got, you know, one of the greatest ever do it, you know, their quarterback position and head coach. So yeah, we got to be fundamentally sound, we got to understand what we’re trying to do, and really key on ways to try to, you know, get a job done on Sunday.”

Allen can try to downplay this game all he wants, but in reality, this game may not tell us everything about the Bills, but it will tell us something. At this point, we know that the AFC East is a two-team race, and we know that the Bills are better than last year. However, we will find out how much better they truly are after Sunday.

Gore on Josh Allen: ‘We have the right quarterback for this team’

Two trips to MetLife Stadium and two victories for the Buffalo Bills, as they defeated the Giants today 28-14 to start the season 2-0 and complete the sweep of the Jets and Giants. With the victory, the Bills are 2-0 for the first time since 2014.

The Bills got another solid game out of second-year QB Josh Allen, who completed 19 of 30 passes for 253 yards and one touchdown. Allen also scored a rushing touchdown in this contest, and when the Giants cut the lead to 21-14 in the fourth quarter, Allen led the Bills on a 13-play, 75-yard drive to put the game away.

15-year veteran RB Frank Gore, who signed with the Bills this past offseason and scored a rushing touchdown on Sunday, is convinced that Buffalo has the right man leading the way in Allen.

“I saw him last year,” Gore said after the game. “Just being here with him, he’s very competitive and very tough. We have the right quarterback for this team. I don’t care what the outside world says; I know we believe in him. I feel he can do anything on the field, and it showed today.”

It’s still early, and there is a lot of football left, but after two weeks, the Bills have a team that could sneak into the playoffs, especially with the defense that they have and the play of Allen.

Next week, the Bills have the 0-2 Bengals coming to town, and if they win that, they could be 3-0 when they host the Patriots in Week 4. That game could tell us a lot about the Bills in 2019. However, for now, the Bills can enjoy 2-0.

Bills’ OC: ‘I have a lot of confidence in Josh(Allen)’

QB Josh Allen and the Buffalo Bills’ offense started slowly against the Jets on Sunday, and at one point, the Bills were down 16-0 in the third quarter. One of the Jets’ touchdowns was a pick-6 by C.J. Mosley in the first quarter.  However, things got better in the fourth quarter for the Bills’ offense, as Allen was able to lead the Bills on two touchdown scoring drives to help Buffalo defeat the Jets 17-16 at MetLife Stadium.

Allen finished the game 24/37 for 254 yards, 1 TD, 2 ints, despite Allen’s struggles, Bills’ OC Brian Daboll continued to have confidence in his quarterback.

“I’ve said this before; I have a lot of confidence in Josh,” Daboll said on Monday. “Again, he hasn’t even started a full season. But he’s a grinder. He’s a competitor. He’s smart. He’s tough. And I got a lot of faith in him. So, we started out the game in no huddle to spread [the Jets] out. Sometimes you start games, you pass to set up the run or you run to set up the pass. Each week is a little bit unique. This is what we felt was best going into this game. Unfortunately we had some turnovers, but again, you don’t pull the plug on that. You take a look at why, and we have enough confidence in him and the rest of the guys to keep going in that no huddle and throwing the ball around a little bit.”

The Bills’ offense turned the ball over four times on Sunday, which, according to Daboll, was one of the reasons they were not able to have success early in the contest.

“Well, we were moving the ball. We had four turnovers,” Daboll said. “It’s well documented, right? Two tipped balls, a fumbled snap, and then we lose one in the pocket on the opening drive. So you have turnovers, that stops drives. Now, if you weren’t moving the ball, then you’re going to have to figure out how to do something else. But we felt like we were moving the ball, and we had turnovers.

“Did we change a whole bunch at halftime? No. I mean we had four drives in the second half minus the four-minute. We had one safety back there backed up. And then we had a drive for three points and two drives at the end. So we had four drives. And give credit to the players. That’s who I give credit to. They went out and executed and made some good plays when they had to make them. You talk about Josh or Smoke (John Brown) or really, I’d say the whole group; that we’re far from where we need to be. But they played the best when it counted the most, and that’s resiliency. That’s mental toughness. You have to string them together and have a good week of preparation this week. Really, what you did last week means nothing in this business. But I’m proud of the way they competed and fought.”

While Allen did his job in the fourth quarter, the credit definitely goes to the Bills’ defense, who kept the team in the game despite the four turnovers. Buffalo escaped with a victory on Sunday, but they have to play better moving forward if they want to have success this season.

Bills’ Josh Allen: ‘The guys that we have on this team, we’re very hungry’

Second-year QB Josh Allen is looking build on what he did in 2018. In 11 starts as a rookie, Allen went 5-6, and while Allen’s numbers were not eye-popping(2074 yards, 10 TDs, 12 ints), he did demonstrate an ability to make things happen with his feet as he rushed for 631 yards, including eight touchdowns on the ground.

On Wednesday, Allen addressed the media and discussed the Miami Dolphins, 2019 Bills, Devin Singletary, scrambling, and more.

Q: How do you blend all that Adam Gase has done is Miami and convert that to what you believe you will see on Sunday?

A: You don’t really know until you get on the field and then make adjustments during the game. Like you said, a lot of unknowns as it comes to personnel. What we expect them to do versus what they actually do. They’re a very well coached team with a good offense. That means we have to do our part on our side, and their defense is no joke either. They’re going to be ready to play. I know Gregg Williams has been a longtime defensive coordinator in this league and he has the respect of a lot of players including myself, just as far as what he does and what he’s been able to do in his career. It’s a heavy matchup that we’re going against and we’re not taking them lightly at all.

Q: When you see on tape what Gregg Williams defenses have done in the past, what do you think?

A: We have to stick to our base rules and we have to see what we see. I have to make sure the protections are right and I know where my answers are. Odds are they’re going to come out and we’re going to see something that we haven’t seen from them. Like I said we’ll have to make adjustments in the game. As long as we’re sticking to the base rules, I know what our answers are, we’ll be okay in that aspect, but we have to be consistent with that and take care of the football. That’s something Gregg is known for, is being able to take the football away with his defenses. Like I said, it’s no easy task playing against a defense coached by him. We’re trying to prepare as much as we can.

Q: In the face of that pressure, where is the line for you to extend the play and look for receivers and just running the ball up field?

A: Really it’s just the smartest play is the best play. Especially against a defense that thrives on turnovers. They’re trying to get pressure to the quarterback. If there’s an option to get a back or a receiver quick underneath and make some plays, that’s what we’re going to try to do. That’s the job of the quarterback to get the ball to playmakers and let them make some plays. However we’re going to try to do that, we’re going to do that.

Q: What are the challenges of making quick adjustments knowing you may not have the best chemistry with how the offense has been changing?

A: I don’t think it’ll be a huge problem. We’ve got a lot of players on this team that are very smart, that communicate very well. That’s one of our point of emphasis when we install our offense. We try to communicate and be the best possible at communicating, so in game adjustments, we have some smart guys that do their job. I don’t expect any difficulties there. Once we make our decision to change something in the game we’re going to run with that and expect our guys to do their job.

Q: Sean McDermott said he was intrigued to see the identity of this team, how would you describe the identity of this year’s team?

A: I think there’s a lot to prove. The guys that we have on this team, we’re very hungry. We’re not going to talk a lot, we’re not going to be in the media a lot, we want to focus in and play the best football we can and win as many football games as we can. I appreciate all the guys and what we’re doing right now, and how hard we’re working, how hard we’re preparing. It’s a group of individuals that really care about each other that put the team first and they are true professionals on this team. Try to see us on Sunday, with the offensive side of the ball, defensive side of the ball and phase three special teams and see how we fare there.

Q:  Sean McDermott said it doesn’t matter if they have to throw the ball 40 times or run the ball 40 times, you’ll do whatever you have to do to win. How much progress has been made on the offensive side of the football from last year to this year?

A: I think he’s very right there. I’m going to loop back there to we’re a group of selfless guys who really care about the team, and put the team first, and try to play complementary football as best we can. That’s offense trying to take care of the football and getting points on the board, and defense is try to get the ball back. As far as comparing it to last year, with the guys that we have in the building right now, how hard we’re preparing and the coaches that we’ve brought in, there’s nowhere to go but up in my opinion. There’s a lot to learn, there’s still a lot to learn that we’re going through. We’re going to make mistakes and we’re going to try to learn from them and we’re going to try to adapt and put that in our game plan.

Q: When the plays break down and you’re stuck trying to innovate, are there secondary routes you want your receivers to take?

A: Yeah, everybody’s got their own scramble rules. I really don’t know if they differ from team to team too much. You know, you see a quarterback scrambling, you try to run towards him, if there’s no one behind you then you run the opposite way. It’s nothing too difficult but the plan is to get the ball out quickly and if I have to improvise and make a couple plays on the run and that’s what is asked of me to do, then I’m going to try to do that.

Q: In practice, Duke Williams made a couple great catches, did you get to see any of them?

A: Yeah, I was sitting right there being able to watch it, it’s good to see him make that type of play. Obviously we’re happy to have him back here even though it’s as a practice squad, but keep making plays like that. We’ll see. He’s one of those guys that everybody kind of leans towards and brings a lot of juice to the guys and I appreciate what he does for us.

Q: You have to have more confidence in yourself then you did last year…

A: Yeah, I definitely have a lot of faith in the guys that we have out there. I’ll allude it to working hard, communicating well. You see a bunch of receivers over there getting extra work with the jugs, so we have guys that are hungry that just want to work, want to get a better, want to win footballs games, and I couldn’t be more proud of this group.

Q: Does this team sometimes want to pass to setup the run like you guys did in the first preseason game?

A: We’ll see. Every game is different, there’s no same situation in football. You can prepare for as many as you can but something will be different during that game. We’re just trying to prepare as much as possible, if we need to run it like I said, we’re going to run it. If we need to pass it, then we’ll pass it. We’ll play good complementary football.

Q: What do you think of Devin Singletary being thrown into the scene?

A: Motor is a good, smart kid. His vision is something that I love out of him. Just the things he can see, his body language in the passing game is very good, and he’s slippery to tackle. He’s going to be very good for us this year, and obviously we’ve increased the role that he’s going to have now and getting to learn behind Frank [Gore] and learn from T.J [Yeldon], he’s in a really good spot right now and I really appreciate how hard he’s been working.

Q: If you had to pick one guy to have a breakout season, who would it be?

A: It’s not going to go on the stat sheet, but Lee Smith. He’s one of those guys that he won’t probably get two or three catches every game, but he’s going to do his job and he’s going to do it well. He’s going to be talking, making sure we’re all on the same page and he’s someone that a lot of guys have a lot of faith in, including myself and he’s one of those vocal leaders that really not many people will know this season, but he’s going to have a huge impact for us.

Q:  Speaking of continuity, how is it going to be to finally get that continuity on the offensive line?

A: It’s going to be awesome. Like I said, I love each and every one of the guys on our team, and appreciate how hard they’ve been working on the offense. It’s going to be fun to get out there and play some real football, and it means something. We’re all hungry, both teams – probably all 32 teams included – everybody wants to get out there and play some real football. It’s a good special group to be a part of here in Buffalo. I think if you ask any of these guys they would say the same thing.

Bills GM Brandon Beane: ‘We want to be more competitive’

With the start of the NFL season just days away, many teams around the league are excited about the possibilities, including the Buffalo Bills.

Last season, the Bills started slow, 3-7 after ten games, and finished decently at 3-3, to end the season at 6-10. It was not a great season, but the Bills seem to have found their QB in Josh Allen.

Bills GM Brandon Beane likes the progress that this team has made, and he hopes they can build on it in 2019.

“Yeah, we want to show growth in a lot of areas,” Beane recently said. “Last year our defense probably carried our team, we weren’t good enough in offense or special teams. I think you saw a lot of the moves that we’ve made this offseason, whether it was draft or free agency, was to improve and try and if our defense was here, and those two were here, try to close the gap. And so I think a lot of that, wins and losses are, we know, what Sean [McDermott] and I get judged on but sometimes there’s adverse situations that happened in the year.

“So, it would never do me justice to give you; I expect this number of wins. But, we want to be more competitive. We want our offense to win some more games for and not have to put too much on the defense. We want to be a balanced team. We want our special teams to improve and control, win the field position game. There’s a lot of factors, what’s our red zone, how’s our red-zone defense, how’s our red zone efficiency on offense. Where are our turnovers, is our team winning the turnover battle. Those things that, generally Monday morning you can point to, and this is why you won the game, or this is why you lost the game. If you win enough of those, I think the wind total will be where you want it at the end of the season.”

Buffalo has a chance, especially if Allen is who they expect him to be. In reality, the AFC East is not one of the better divisions in football. The Jets are the Jets, the Dolphins don’t have a quarterback, and while the defending champion Patriots still have Tom Brady,  they will probably miss TE Rob Gronkowski.

Defensively, Buffalo still should be a formidable unit, but as stated by Beane, the offense must bring more to the table, and that falls on Allen. First, he must stay healthy, and next, he must continue to improve as a passer. Anything is possible for the Bills but expect somewhere around 8-8 for this team in 2019.

Jags’ Allen: ‘I have two All-Pros with me’

Being a rookie in the NFL is never easy. However, if you are rookie that is surrounded by Pro Bowl talent, well, maybe it’s not so bad, which is the case for Jaguars rookie DE/LB Josh Allen. The 22-year-old, who was the seventh overall pick in the 2019 NFL Draft, is fortunate enough to have a lot of great players to learn from in Jacksonville.

He has four-time Pro Bowler Calais Campbell.

“I mean, ‘it’s Calais Campbell. You all have seen his work, ‘you’ve seen what ‘he’s been doing for the last 10-plus years,” Allen said on Thursday. “So, having a guy like that, that wants to teach me, that needs me, ‘I’m going to listen to anything he tells me to do. And what ‘he’s telling me to do, I can do it, so when I do it, ‘he’s making a play and ‘I’m making a play, ‘we’re going to be an unstoppable duo.”

Allen also has the pleasure of playing with two-time Pro Bowler DT Marcell Dareus and DE Yannick Ngakoue, so essentially, Allen has a lot of resources.

“I have two All-Pros with me [Marcell Dareus and Calais Campbell]. I have Abry Jones, and I have Calais with me,” Allen said. “They are teaching me so much about the game. I know when [Yannick] comes back, my game is going to get so much better. Right now, we are just focused on winning, and I know when he comes back, we are going to have a good tandem going on.”

Allen, who was a 2018 All-American last season, and also the 2018 SEC Defensive Player of the Year,  knew how to get after the quarterback at Kentucky; Allen had 17 sacks last season, which were the most by an SEC player in a single season since the NCAA started official sack records in 2000, and he finished his four-year career at Kentucky with 31.5 sacks.

Allen is going to have growing pains, but with the talent he has around him, the transition may not be all that bad.

Ramsey on Josh Allen: ‘I definitely thought he was the best player in the draft’

Jaguars rookie LB Josh Allen comes to the team with a lot of expectations. Allen was seventh overall pick by Jacksonville in the 2019 NFL Draft, and in his last season at Kentucky, Allen had a team-high 88 tackles, 17.0 sacks, 21.5 TFL, and five forced fumbles, earning consensus first-team All-America honors, SEC Defensive Player of the Year.

Allen’s 17.0 sacks were the most by an SEC player in a single season since the NCAA started official sack records in 2000 and he ranked second nationally in sacks, fourth in fumbles forced and sixth in TFL.

Allen’s ability to get after the quarterback is something the Jaguars can use, and according to Jaguars corner Jalen Ramsey, Allen has the ability to be a special player.

“I watched him in college, and I thought he was a dog,” Ramsey recently said about Allen. “I thought he was a good player and I guess he was on his visit or something here and he mentioned me in one of his stories and I saw it. I DM’d him back. I definitely thought he was the best player in the draft. I got to see him when he was in Orlando for the bowl game, and he had like 4.0 sacks. Then after the game, just his swag and his whole demeanor about it, he was like, ‘If I’m not the No. 1 overall pick, I don’t know who will be.’ That sh** just … Yeah, that’s me right there. You all know, I love that. That type of mentality as well as actually putting it out there on the field, that’s what I’m all about. I think he will fit in well. I hope he can get healthy; I don’t know what all is going on with that.”

Allen has been slowed during minicamp with a knee injury, but if healthy, he should help. Jacksonville amassed 37 sacks last season, which was tied for 22nd in the league, so if Allen has the goods, that Jacksonville pass rush should be stable for years to come.

Photo/courtesy: Jacksonville Jaguars

Ngakoue on Allen: ‘The better he is, the more he can take double teams off him and myself’

The Jacksonville Jaguars have signed 2019 first-round draft pick DE/LB Josh Allen to his NFL rookie contract, the club announced today.

“The journey began when I got drafted here, but now it’s official,” said Allen. “Now, I get to put my head down, get to work and continue to try and be the best player I can.”

With the seventh overall pick in the 2019 NFL Draft, the Jaguars selected Allen from the University of Kentucky. Allen, 6-5, 262, did not miss a game in his four-year career, playing in all 51 games with 35 starts. He totaled 224 tackles, 41 tackles for loss, 31.5 sacks, 11 forced fumbles, two FFs and eight passes defensed.

In 2018, Allen had a team-high 88 tackles, 17.0 sacks, 21.5 TFL and five forced fumbles, earning consensus first-team All-America honors, SEC Defensive Player of the Year and was honored with the Bronko Nagurski Award, presented to the nation’s top defensive player. Allen’s 17.0 sacks were the most by an SEC player in a single season since the NCAA started official sack records in 2000 and he ranked second nationally in sacks, fourth in fumbles forced and sixth in TFL.

“I see a little of myself in him,” said fourth-year DE Yannick Ngakoue following OTA No.1. “I definitely want to get with him each and every day and try to get him better. The better he is, the more he can take double teams off him and myself.”

Allen is the sixth of the team’s seven 2019 draft selections under contract. Only LB Quincy Williams remains unsigned.

Photo/courtesy: Jacksonville Jaguars

Allen: ‘Having that year under my belt in the same system is huge’

The expectations are much higher for second-year Bills QB Josh Allen in 2019. Last season, Allen was 5-6 in 11 starts with the team and showed a lot of promise with his arm and legs. Fortunately for Allen, things will be very familiar to him. He will have the same offensive coordinator in Brian Daboll, which Allen believes will give him a significant advantage in 2019.

“As far as knowing the playbook, I would say I’m leaps and bounds ahead,” Allen said on Monday during the first day of OTAs. “Having that year under my belt in the same system is huge, for a young quarterback especially. You look at some of the better quarterbacks in the league, they’ve been under their offensive coordinator for a few years. That helps, just knowing what’s going on, you don’t really have to think about it; you just play football.”

In the offseason, the Bills strengthened the wide receiver position with the additions of Cole Beasley, Andre Roberts, and John Brown to go along with they had at the position in Zay Jones and Robert Foster, which should help Allen. However, for those guys to be effective, Allen must be a more accurate quarterback in 2019. Last season, Allen had a 52% completion percentage. According to Allen, improving his accuracy is one of the things he worked on in the offseason.

“Ball placement is huge, especially in this league,” Allen said. “The type of concepts that we have, trying to get the ball to our playmakers where that can make some plays. That was a huge emphasis; we’re still working it. That is something that will never change; you always want to try to work on ball placement. Every day you come out, it’s kind of a new thing, and sometimes the ball comes out of your hand a little bit differently. You have to make adjustments and understand what your body is trying to tell you and try to go with it. Like I said, just trying to get the ball to the playmakers because we can’t do anything if they don’t have the ball in their hands.”

The Bills are depending on Allen to have a big 2019 season, and if he delivers, happy times will be in Western New York again!