Buffalo Bills vs. New England Patriots: Week 16 report card

Buffalo Bills (Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports)
Buffalo Bills (Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports) /
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Buffalo Bills
Isaiah McKenzie, Buffalo Bills (Photo by Maddie Malhotra/Getty Images) /

Wide Receivers/Tight Ends

The Buffalo Bills entered this game without Cole Beasley and Gabriel Davis after both were added to the Reserve/COVID-19 list during the week. This opened the door for some players to get more playing time and one of those players was Isaiah McKenzie. He seized the opportunity and led the team in receptions (11), receiving yards (125), and caught a touchdown.

However, there were some players, like Emmanuel Sanders and Jake Kumerow, that left some big opportunities on the field. Both players dropped passes that would have been touchdowns and if the Bills came up short against the Patriots these plays would have been magnified.

The play of McKenzie and Stefon Diggs, who had seven receptions, 85 yards, and one touchdown, is enough to boost the grade this week.

Grade: B+

Offensive Line

Similar to the wide receiver position, the offensive line was in a tough position this week with Jon Feliciano, Cody Ford on the Reserve/COVID-19 list, and Dion Dawkins not coming off until Saturday. The Bills started this game with Dawkins on the sideline and Spencer Brown getting the start alongside Ike Boettger, Mitch Morse, Ryan Bates, and Daryl Williams.

However, an injury to Boettger during the game forced the coaching staff to significantly shuffle the line with Morse being the only player remaining at the position he started the game. Spencer Brown went back to right tackle, Dion Dawkins came in at left tackle, Daryl Williams moved inside to right guard, and Ryan Bates slide over to left guard.

The great news is that even with all the shuffling and challenges, this offensive line had one of their best performances of the game. The Patriots really didn’t get much pressure on Josh Allen during the game and he was not sacked once.

Grade: A