Josh Allen was basically the entire offense for the Bills in their Wild Card playoff win vs. the Colts. He finished the day 26-35 for 324 yards with 2 TDs and 0 INTs. He also ran for 54 yards and another touchdown. His growth this season has been fun to watch. His maturity and special talent were both on display vs. Indianapolis and led to the key plays on each of Buffalo’s scoring drives.
When things start to click for a quarterback, he begins to feel more comfortable. He becomes proactive instead of reactive. That often leads to more frequent attempts to manipulate defenders. Against the Colts, Allen got Buffalo’s offense kickstarted by doing this very thing.
On the below play, the Colts would spin out into Cover-2.
Allen pump-faked to the right initially, and this got the deep safety to that side to move towards the sideline. This left an opening in the middle of the field for Stefon Diggs’ route.
The result was a 36-yard gain, and the Bills Offense was up and running.
In the 4th quarter with the Bills leading 17-10, Allen again was able to manipulate coverage to help create a big play.
Pre-snap, Allen saw safety Khari Willis creeping down into the box and deep safety Julian Blackmon slowly moving to the middle of the field.
So he changed the play, assuming he would get single high-coverage. Single-high meant Stefon Diggs would get to run a go route vs. cornerback T.J. Carrie in 1-on-1 coverage on the outside. That’s a mismatch favoring Buffalo.
All Allen had to do was hold the deep safety to the left to prevent him from being a factor in the play. And that’s what he did.
Diggs just ran right by Carrie. It did look like Carrie was expecting a quick throw due to the blitz and was sitting on an intermediate route. Unfortunately for the Colts, Allen was well protected and was able to deliver a strike to an open Diggs.
Allen also used his legs to make play after play on Saturday. In addition to his 54 rushing yards, he made several throws outside the pocket to pick up big chunks of yards.
This great throw along the sidelines got the Bills out from the shadow of their own goalpost and started a 96-yard touchdown drive before the end of the first half.
This scramble came just two snaps later. The downfield accuracy while moving to his left is absurd.
This 21-yard completion on a 2nd-and-15 later in the game allowed the Bills to eat up a little more clock late in the 4th quarter.
Allen was simply outstanding in getting Buffalo its first playoff win in 25 years. He’ll need to continue playing out of his mind to beat a red-hot Ravens team in the Divisional Round.
[…] by the way, the ability to make those special athletic plays didn’t go away. They just became more of a last resort for Allen. The end result was an MVP-caliber season. The […]
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