It’s been an up-and-down season for the Buffalo Bills. They beat the Colts by 13 in Week 1, lost to the Patriots by eight in Week 2 (in a game they trailed 37-13), beat the Dolphins by 27 in Week 3, and lost to the Giants by 14 in Week 4.
What do we make of the Bills at this point?
“Well, I think they’re a roller coaster ride right now,” NFL on CBS analyst Steve Tasker said on CBS Sports Radio’s Gio and Jones. “They are really high and they are really low. One of the things that’s bothering them now, they’ve got some key guys injured. They’re a top-heavy roster, they’ve very talented in their front 11 on both sides of the ball. But behind those 11, they don’t have much depth. They had an offensive lineman out this last week – their right guard, the rookie John Miller was out – and I think they struggled up front. They had a couple of holding penalties, they had two touchdowns called back, missed a field goal and lost by 14 to the Giants. And they did it without Sammy Watkins and without LeSean McCoy in the lineup, who are both injured. So they’ve got some injury problems and they’ve some depth problems that are starting to show through, and that makes for a pretty up and down season.”
It seems the Bills also have a discipline problem. They’ve done a lot of jawing and have been called for a lot of personal fouls.
Shouldn’t they just shut up and play?
“Yeah, they’re hearing about it from everybody this week – not only from the head coach, but from the media,” said Tasker, who will call Bills/Titans this Sunday. “And also, I think the level of veteran leaders they have in that room, they’re hearing it from each other as well. It was interesting. If you hear the Buffalo spin on it, Odell Beckham Jr. should have been thrown out of the game because there were three different instances where he punched players on the field and now has been fined by the National Football League, and you throw that into the wrench of what the referees see and what they didn’t. The Bills will tell you that the Giants should have been without Odell Beckham Jr. That would have changed the tilt of the field a little bit right there, and the Bills retaliating to getting punched get penalties and the Giants get off scot-free. Nobody on the Bills got fined for the personal fouls, so it looks as thought the Giants played that just about right. If you want to give them credit for that, they actually did a nice job by drawing some personal-foul penalties.
“But as it goes, there’s no question (the Bills) had some holding penalties, all kinds of offsides penalties – and really at crucial moments as well where you lose two touchdown plays, which were really great plays by the offense,” Tasker continued. “So there’s a lot of reasons to be optimistic and certainly if the Bills get their roster back and get a guy like LeSean McCoy back in the lineup and Sammy Watkins back in the lineup, things may be different for them. But for now, the roller coaster seems to be on the low side.”