"The Good, the Bad, and the Ugh. Reading the Signs in the Game Good Signs"
Finishing in the red: In the first half, the offense did not stall in the red zone, it hit on all eight cylinders: Philip Rivers, MelvinGordon, pass-catching Virgil Green, Austin Ekeler, Mike Williams, Keenan Allen, Tyrell Williams sputtered, so as the last two cylinders, the whole offensive line, even with replacing injured Joe Barksdale with Sam ‘the Chevy’ Tevi.
Bolts were so dominant that some Bills fans began leaving in the second quarter: By halftime, thousands headed for the parking lot, leaving their money, team and faithfulness on the field of battle. They missed quarterback Josh Allen’s first two touchdown passes, the first touchdowns of the Bills season. The rookie Allen is freakishly strong, smart and can throw darts: the kid will stay in the picture.
The Running Game is in good (soft) hands: Integrated into the passing attack. Rivers’ passer rating in the first half was 152, 15 of 16 passes complete. Wow.
The Defense figured out how to cover a mobile rookie QB without Bosa rampant in the backfield. Better late than nada.
Defensive rookies improved: Kyzir White, Uchenna Nwosu and the Black Panther Derwin James, are growing smarter and faster. Like the Scarlet Pimpernel, James appeared here, there and everywhere — as promised.
Nobody shadowed Shady McCoy: Not until the second half, after the Bills had called his number over and over and over like a one-ball bingo game. A moderate 80 yds from scrimmage, but still had the most carries and most receptions by a Bill — and mostly in the first half.
Tyrell Williams: Another fumble. And just three receptions. T-Dub, are you sliding down the passing tree? Travis Benjamin is as fast as a rabbit, but too often just as hare-brained, so the Chargers need you fully charged.
…”His white headband blossomed red as he lay on the field like a stone.”
Two outrageous personal fouls, which could easily have lost a closer game:
Uchenna Nwosu hit Buffalo special teamer Taiwan Jones in the head with his helmet. Jones was not wearing a helmet. His white headband blossomed red as he lay on the field like a stone. Things happen in the fog of war, but the new rules state you can never lead with your helmet.
2. Hey, Desmond King, Nwosu is a rookie, and made a mistake in the heat of the moment, but what you did… That was intentional, and you are not a rookie. Taunting? Really? And then interviewed afterwards, you said “It was a BS call”– right after you said the head coach tore a strip off you. You knew the rules. Put on your big boy pants and be accountable.
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Outscored in the second half 10-3.
There is a long ugly history within Bolts culture, of not being able to finish. I still remember them, long ago, choking up a record 28-point lead against the Raiders.
There was another systems crash at home against the Manning-led Broncos not so long ago– do you remember that one?
The Nutshell in a Nutshell:
The Bolts are now demonstrably better, because you are what your record says you are, and last year Chargers went 0-4 in the first quarter of the season.
All fans will take a sloppy win over a hard-fought loss. But then give us a blast of Joey Bosa.