Monday, September 12, 2011

3 things we learned from the Bills Sunday

The Buffalo Bills played like they had something to prove Sunday, blowing out the Kansas City Chiefs, 41-7, on the road. Here's what they proved.

The offensive line has some life.

The Bills gave up five quarterback hits and a sack against the Chiefs defense. While five QB hits wouldn’t be a stellar number as a per-game average at the end of the season, it’s pretty good for the opener, and it’s a big improvement over last season. Only 10 of the other 27 teams that played before Monday night did better.

“With all of the hard words and criticism (the offensive linemen) were getting, I think they deserve some praise for what they did out there,” Bills quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick told the media Monday.

Buffalo’s line also churned out 4.2 yards a carry, which is tied for seventh-best so far, and the Bills’ 163 yards on the ground is tied for fourth-best of the 28 teams.

Ryan Fitzpatrick can be more than just a stop gate.

A four-touchdown, no-interception game was just what Fitz needed to hop right on track to where he was a season ago. He’ll certainly hit a few bumps in the road, but if Fitzpatrick can keep up production anything close to what he’s shown over the last 12 months, the 28-year-old field general still has enough time to see an offense grow around him.

Fitzpatrick is already surrounded by young wideouts in Steve Johnson and Donald Jones, as well as up-and-coming running back C.J. Spiller. Oh, and there’s this 6-foot-7 tight end named Scott Chandler who caught two scores from Fitzpatrick Sunday. He’ll help.

Chan Gailey has the right attitude.

Certainly, the Bills were ecstatic about this one, but coach Gailey seems to have the players in the right mindset.

“Starting now it means nothing,” Gailey said Monday. “We got a lot of work to do. You watch the film, we left a lot of plays on the field on punt return, in the passing game and run defense. We could have done better and I think our guys realize that. They want to be better. We know it’s going to take better to be successful on the road.

“It was a good win. It was enjoyable. Those are always fun. When you win all three phases you normally win lopsidedly and that’s what we were able to do. It was just one of those games. I’d love to say it will happen every week but you don’t expect that in this league.”

Enough said.

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