Numerous mistakes and bad play calls led to the Buffalo Bills‘ disappointing loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 1, and while quarterback Josh Allen could point fingers at the offensive line or coordinator Brian Daboll, he’s taking the blame for himself.
Allen completed 58.8% of his touchdowns for 270 yards and finished with a passer rating of 79.7 on Sunday, per BuffaloBills.com. He received little help from his offensive line, unable to elongate certain drives due to six holding penalties. As a unit, they were only able to convert one of three fourth downs against a formidable Steelers defense.
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Allen addressed the media on Wednesday, taking fault for his role in the team’s 23-16 loss to Pittsburgh, and explained how he plans to turn things around in Week 2.
When asked about how he can help the offensive line in protecting him on pass plays, “Maybe working bottom to top a bit more instead of top to bottom,” Allen said, “which essentially translates to taking the short completions to get ball out faster,” One Bills Live host Chris Brown tweeted.
“Whether it be just first game nerves or jitters or feeling stuff with my feet but again I gotta play better, I gotta be better, I know that,” Allen said, as reported by WIVB 4. “Finding completions early on, quick ones, trying to help myself out there and help the line and try to get these guys hands down and maybe tired and it’s something I didn’t do.”
Fans Can Expect to See Less ‘Highlight Reel’ Throws in Week 2
Allen saying he’ll try throwing shorter passes instead of leaning on his rocket arm to make MVP-style long balls, which he is still highly capable of doing, is the $258 million franchise star eating some humble pie. Sure, he might have fewer “highlight-reel” throws, as Buffalo Rumblings‘ Matt Warren noted, winning the game matters most, and Allen knows that.
On the team’s inability to score in the red zone, “It was mainly execution and that starts with me,” Allen said. Daboll is also focused on implementing shorter passes and delivering “in the fringe of the red zone.”
“We missed on a couple of those short-yardage opportunities,” Daboll said. “And that’s the game against a really good defense that holds opponents to usually 300 yards or less the most of their games. We have to capitalize on those opportunities, and we have to all do a better job.”
Allen Is Not Brushing Off the Miami Dolphins as an Easy Win
Even though the Bills have been 7-1 against the Miami Dolphins since McDermott took over as head coach in 2017, Allen is not taking anything for granted.
It was just last season the Bills routed the Dolphins 56-26, and Buffalo should expect to face a team wanting nothing more than sweet revenge. “We’re focused on going into a hostile environment and trying to execute,” he said on facing the Dolphins in Week 2.
The Dolphins were the only AFC East time to snag a win during Week 1, and a Bills loss in Week 2 would give Miami an early lead in the division. As it stands, Buffalo is favored by 3.5 points while the game has an over/under of 48.5, per Sports Illustrated.
Buffalo faces off against their AFC East rival at the Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens on September 19 at 1 p.m. ET.