Bills QB Josh Allen Turns Heads With Subtle Comment on OC Ken Dorsey

Josh Allen

Getty Bills quarterback Josh Allen looks at Ford Field on November 24, 2022.

Just as they had done often over the course of the last four games, the Buffalo Bills stalled out on offense for long stretches in a 24-18 loss to the Cincinnati Bengals on November 5.

After the game, remarks from quarterback Josh Allen and head coach Sean McDermott seemed to point at offensive coordinator Ken Dorsey, with one insider questioning whether Dorsey’s job could be at risk. Sunday’s loss dropped the Bills to 5-4, wasting an opportunity to move into a tie for first place in the AFC East and throwing their playoff hopes into question.

Josh Allen Can’t Explain Pace of Offense

The Bills have gotten criticism for the pacing of their offense, as they found success when going no-huddle and in hurry-up scenarios but often struggling when they slow it down and take a more methodical approach. When asked about why the team didn’t use an up-tempo offense more against the Bengals, Allen answered with what The Athletic’s Joe Buscaglia called a “subtle, yet coded response” aimed at Dorsey.

“Just the game plan that we had going into it,” Allen replied.

Buscaglia added that the normally subdued McDermott seemed to take a more direct shot at the offense.

“That can’t happen,” the Bills coach said. “Against a good football team that’s known for scoring points, and a good quarterback. We’ve got to be able to score points, and we didn’t do it enough.”

Biscaglia noted that the more direct shots at Dorsey represent a “rather interesting shift in how things have sounded” and could represent more desperation as the team has continued to struggle and Super Bowl hopes appear to be fading away.

“The subtle messages are becoming less so,” Buscaglia wrote. “The frustration and exasperation is growing, and the words used have become tougher. After a great start to the game, in which the Bills averaged 12.1 yards per play on their opening drive, that dynamic offense went missing in action. They gained only 158 yards over their next eight drives, and watched as the Bengals slowly pulled away.”

Offense Struggling, Defense Banged Up

As the Bills have struggled to find their footing on offense, the defense has been hit hard with a series of key injuries, which worsened in Sunday’s loss to the Bengals. Already down one key member of the secondary when Tre’Davious White suffered a season-ending Achilles tear, the Bills lost safety Micah Hyde and cornerbacks Christian Benford and Dane Jackson during the game.

Linebacker Terrel Bernard, who emerged as a key leader on the defense this season, also left the game in concussion protocol. As WGR 550 reporter Nate Geary noted, the team could be very shorthanded when they take on the Denver Broncos next Monday night.

“If Christian Benford misses time (McDermott mentioned he tweaked his hamstring which is not good) and Dane Jackson also didn’t finish the game, the Bills will be down to their 5th and 6 CBs in week 10,” Geary wrote on X, formerly known as Twitter. “If Bernard misses time due to a concussion, they’ll be down to their 3rd and 4th LBers.”

The Bills could have a strong chance to turn things around next week. Heavy projections powered by Quarter4 give the Bills a 69% chance of winning against the Broncos, predicting they will be favored by 5.5 points.

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