The Buffalo Bills made waves in Week 1 when Zack Moss, who had slated in as the backup running back, was a surprise health scratch.
Ahead of Sunday’s AFC East showdown with the Miami Dolphins, Bills head coach Sean McDermott offered a bit more explanation as to why Moss was inactive and dropped a hint for his status on Sunday. Inserting Moss into the lineup could mean another member of the offense is headed to the bench, an insider explains.
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Moss May be Ready Take the Field
Talking to Sal Capaccio of WGR 550 on Friday, McDermott shared some insight as to why Moss didn’t playhe ath against the Pittsburgh Steelers. He noted that the second-year running back missed some critical time this offseason as he was rehabbing a broken ankle that ended his season last year and a hamstring injury suffered in training camp.
“Zack missed quite a bit of training camp for us and was out so we’ll see where it goes this week,” McDermott said.
As Nick Wojton of USA Today’s Bills Wire noted, this seems to be a different answer than earlier in the week, when McDermott suggested that Moss had slid down the depth chart.
“But this is a change of reasoning from the coach. Previously it sounded like Moss was jumped on the depth chart by both by Devin Singletary and Matt Breida,” Wojton noted.
McDermott added that Moss has looked better in practice this week, hinting that he could be ready to hit the field against the Dolphins.
Moss rushed for 481 yards with four touchdowns last season, splitting time with Devin Singletary in the backfield. The Bills leaned heavily on the pass in 2020, and often utilized wide receiver Isaiah McKenzie for jet sweeps while keeping Singletary and Moss largely between the tackles.
Changes for the Bills
As Joe Buscaglia of The Athletic noted, the Bills could gain an important edge with Moss back on the field, as he was one of the team’s most effective short-yardage running backs last season. But inserting him into the lineup could also come at the expense of another skill player, he noted.
“The Bills can find a spot for Moss in two ways. They can make tight end Tommy Sweeney inactive, but that’s not a great option if the Bills shift back to more 11 personnel. The optimal way would be to make three defensive linemen inactive,” Buscaglia wrote, pointing out that Efe Obada is already questionable for Sunday’s game with a calf injury.
After scoring just 16 points against the Steelers and struggling at times to move the ball, quarterback Josh Allen said the Bills need to do a better job of executing against the Dolphins. The Bills missed out on a few opportunities for big plays against the Steelers, including a long pass to an open Emmanuel Sanders that Allen overthrew.
“The best way to cure that is to go out there and execute and play how we know we can play football,” Allen said, via Syracuse.com. “It’s going to be no easy task going against the team that we’re playing this week. … We’re hungry.”