The Manuel To Success: Buffalo Bills vs New York Jets


Sep 8, 2013; Orchard Park, NY, USA; Buffalo Bills quarterback EJ Manuel (3) walks off the field after a game against the New England Patriots at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Patriots beat the Bills 23 to 21. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

1) Control The Game Tempo

The Buffalo Bills head into the Meadowlands this weekend to face the New York Jets in a good ol’ fashioned AFC rivalry match. The first key to victory is to control the tempo of the game. Take the crowd and emotion from the home team’s fan base by methodically controlling the game through strong offensive pressure with the run game of Fred Jackson & CJ Spiller along with a strong passing attack. The New York Jets have a tall, physical corner in Antonio Cromartie, who will be matched up with Stevie Johnson, but don’t forget Bills fans: Johnson had four catches for 55 yards and a TD in his last match up with the New York Jets in week 1 of the 2012 season. This means Johnson can be relied upon in the passing game, especially with Robert Woods holding it down as the number two receiver. This will be an emotion-filled bloodbath of bad plays, penalties (yet again), and turnovers; I mean it’s a rivalry game so it’s bound to have ups and downs, but the Buffalo Bills can survive the battle in the Meadowlands through steady scoring and strong, physical defense.

2) Bend Don’t Break

The Buffalo Bills defense will have their hands full with Geno Smith & co. In the pocket, Geno can pressure a defense with his arm strength, confidence, and accuracy, while the running game of Chris Ivory continues to improve into week three. The Buffalo Bills defense can dominate this battle, but don’t think it won’t be a Pettine/Ryan chess match. The game will get tough and physical to the breaking point of each team. It is only a matter of who breaks the will of the other first. The Buffalo Bills will have to bend to the flow of the game, regardless of how events turn, but we cannot break and crumble as a team.

3) Turnovers

While Geno throws the ball with confidence, he makes some horrible passes. The Buffalo Bills defense can control the New York Jets offensive game with persistent defense and points from turnovers. The more, the better.

4) Penalties

I know. Penalties WILL happen tomorrow but the Buffalo Bills need to pay attention and limit them as much as possible. It’s an emotional game for a young team  who was embarrassed by the Jets in week 1 of the 2012 season but penalties will kill the Buffalo Bills if they don’t play smart, professional football within the rules of the NFL.

5) EJ vs Geno

Ultimately, the game comes down to EJ Manuel vs Geno Smith. The game is in their hands, and honestly fans, what better way than to dominate than to come into the home of the New York Jets and outplaying Geno Smith in his own house. EJ needs to beat Geno the way his mother did when he was late for supper as a kid. Remember the pre-draft talk before the 2013 draft? Geno was one of the top QB’s entering the draft until the downfall of the West Virginia Mountaineers season. EJ steadily built a solid fan base as the Florida State Seminoles starting QB through the season, capping the season off with an Orange Bowl victory over Northern Illinois. This will be a test to see which quarterback can lead his team to victory and another step in the evolution of EJ Manuel & Geno Smith at the quarterback position. With the poise of Manuel in last week’s last second victory against