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2020 Season Post Mortem: talent, coaching, or scheme hump we need to get over?


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And I used the word "hump" rather than "problem" because we just made it to the AFC Championship game. This team doesn't really have a problem, but there's definitely a hump to get over with KC.

 

I watched Mahomes throwing to a wide open Hill or Kelce throughout the entire AFC Championship Game. I damn well assume our coaches knew that was coming... or do you think they didn't and it was a coaching issue??? Or do you think they knew and we just had a bad game plan and it was a scheme issue??? Or do you think we just lack the talent to match up on Defense???

 

White is supposed to be an Elite CB... has he really looked like that at all this year? Who else on our D can match-up with these guys? And who on the front 4 can generate pressure???

 

I tend to think that other than Milano, Edmunds, White and Poyer... losing or letting go of almost anyone else on our D in the off-season just won't be a big deal. I also think getting Star back--as long as he's motivated--will really help.

 

On the opposite side of the ball... I was encouraged by going for it on an early 4th down and disappointed with 2 Red Zone 4th downs we took FGs instead of going for it. I guess the no huddle stuff was a problem early with the crowd noise, but we should've been ready.

 

So what about scheme? Did Daboll plan for too much over the top? Or has he not been coaching Josh enough to take the underneath stuff? And I swear I'm gonna bash my head against the wall every year saying this, but Allen needs to be coached to understand that scrambling equals a checkdown... and often better. We finally saw designed runs mostly cut from the offense and Allen use his legs on broken passing plays, but I think he should've been doing more of this today and throughout the season in general.

 

Okay, so is it talent on offense??? Diggs and Allen are the core Elite guys obviously... so who else is the problem??? Was it a health issue tonight? Davis, Brown and Beasley were all clearly hobbled. Is that why on every passing play our WRs looked bracketed??? If not, is it an upgrade we need? At what position and who gets cut. Our running game is woefully underwhelming... so we obviously need to upgrade our RB corps... plus our OL??? Which positions???

 

I feel good about Allen working hard this off-season to get better and think he will even if his numbers next year aren't at the level they were this year.

 

So then what the heck does this team truly need to be a Super Bowl Champ next year since next season is clearly Super Bowl or bust???

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  • transplantbillsfan changed the title to 2020 Season Post Mortem: talent, coaching, or scheme hump we need to get over?
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It is a bit of all 3.    1. We don't have as much elite talent as KC.  2. We don't have the experience they have in terms of coaching (those FG decisions McDermott made last night I don

The advantage of living over here is that after the game you just go straight to bed as it is 4am and you need to get up for work 2 hours later...  So having slept on it, a little bit, I’m surprisingl

Going into this season the two things I wanted were a playoff win, and to know if we had our franchise QB.  I got both of those.   We got beat by a superior team.  No shame in that. But for

IMO... this team is a reflection of the coaching staff. They preach process, process, process. And that’s cool and all... look I love McD and I think this staff has done a great job to get the team where it is today. He adapts after he reviews tape and has time to digest, but this staff severely lacks in-game adjustments. Maybe McD and co are great Monday-Saturday coaches, but they lack on game day. I was smh many times at the passive conservativeness today and stubbornness to stay the course. We showed no guts or passion today. 

Much like everyone else, I wanted to bang my head through a wall watching this soft shell zone get torched by the Chiefs. We kept rushing four and had guys wide open all over the field. McD didn’t change a thing coming out of half and left our players to rot. White looked like a 5th string CB out there today. If this guy is your franchise shutdown corner then you put him man to man on their best threat and tell him to shut them down. Jam his ass at the line and be physical. Will he win every battle? No, but he will win some, which was better than ZERO tonight. The whole defensive backfield got embarrassed tonight. 
 

On to another note, the inconsistencies of both our offensive and defensive lines plagued the team this year. JA covers up a lot of the offensive line mishaps and the defensive line generated no consistent pressure all year. The defensive line especially needs a hard reboot before next season. Beane will address this... I’m sure of it. 
 

Linebackers also need to be looked at. I don’t see any reason for us to offer a lucrative deal to Milano and we shouldn’t pick up the fifth year for Edmunds. Hindsight and looking back I wish we drafted Darius Leonard instead of him. I may be in the minority, but I don’t think Milano and Edmunds are any better than average. They aren’t game changers and you need a game changing leader at LB. They miss their gaps so many times. 
 

Offensively, JA needs to keep improving, which he will if his desire to be great stays there. Having him and Diggs long term will keep this team offensively competitive for a long time. He needs to get better and have more confidence in the big moments though. You can tell he’s not up to it quite yet in the big playoff moments yet. 
 

Most importantly they need to find a running game in the offseason. That’s on Daboll and scheme more than anything. Idk if the reasoning for this was him knowing we have crappy rbs and blocking so he just didn’t try or if he just trusted JA that much and didn’t think we need it. 
 

The offensive line was Jekyl and Hyde. Getting Ford back will help, and I believe Morse may be a so casualty. Bring back Feliciano and let him take over at center. Hopefully we can retain Daryl Williams. 
 

TL;DR - To be legit threats to KC in the AFC we need to coach more decisively and to win. Not be as stubborn in their ways when things are going wrong and put our players in a position to win. We also need personnel help in various spots and continued development from JA. 

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The talent on defense paired with a bend but but don't break game plan killed them.  It's fine if your offense is converting third downs and scoring points like the regular season.  Doesn't work in the playoffs.  Both Tampa and KC have attacking defenses.  Stopping the run is not even a passing thought for those defenses. It's all about pressure on the QB.  McD needs to evolve.

 

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Well Tampa has the best run defense in the league, but I digress.

 

The issues we saw today were season long. The offense is one dimensional and KC is an overmatch for every defense 2 years running now.

 

On defense, the pass rush has to improve at getting home. Buffalo actually blitzes quite a bit (8th in blitz percent), but they're 27th in hurry percent and 20th in QB knockdown percent. It's an average sack team that doesn't consistently get there.

 

It's tweaks, not overhaul. Improve the pass rush, bring balance to the offense and go try again.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I think that everyone is way too emotional to look at this logically right now or at least most of us the fact of the matter is is that her defense went down this year it was not what it has been in previous years we need to fix that because we can’t expect our offense to be a powerhouse in every game sometimes you just have to grind it out

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As mentioned above with our wide receivers, I would really like to know how many of our guys were carrying injuries today before making too many comments. There had to be some reason the coaches continued to let Kelse and Hill have so much room.

The season-long issues though are lack of a really effective pass rush outside Jerry Hughes, a running game which went from not that good to basically nonexistent, and run defence which ranged from iffy to appalling.

Despite these issues, the team had a terrific season, well beyond most of our expectations. There is continuity in the organisation, we have our franchise quarterback who will improve even further, and the needed culture change has been well and truly affected. Three trips to the playoffs in four years; with two playoff games won this year; show that this franchise is in a better place than it has been for decades.

When we get over today’s disappointment, we should all be able to enjoy  reflecting on a very successful year.

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The advantage of living over here is that after the game you just go straight to bed as it is 4am and you need to get up for work 2 hours later...  So having slept on it, a little bit, I’m surprisingly calm about the loss.  We were just beaten by a better team, that played probably its best game of the year, while we didn’t bring our A-game.   

I thought that, just like in week 6, they played KC with too much respect.  Going for a 4th down on the very first drive gave me hope, but once playing from behind it was too calculated and respectful.  I was actually OK with going for a field goal at the end of the second quarter, as blowing that would have taken the soul out of the team.  But in the second half, when behind two scores, it was inexcusable.

Many positives though this season, the main one is perhaps that this team has proven it can learn and grow, call it the process if you want.  JA was overall great but yesterday he didn’t play with his usual confidence early on, throwing it off target a few times and getting away with one or two near interceptions.  And he needs to run sideways when tackled or toss the ball away earlier, you can get sacked, but not with a 15 yard loss, that happens too often with him.  As for the rest of the offense, our running game is obviously mediocre at best, but I happen to think that, with the weapons we have, we lack a top quality Tight End.  We have done for years in fact.  A bit lost in all the post-match doom and gloom is our kicking game, after a shaky season start Bass really came through, he just hasn’t had the opportunity yet to win us a game with a last second pressure kick, that’s a psychological test he still needs to go through. 

I am curious about the off season, will they stick to the nucleus of this team or make some surprising cuts and replacements?  The one I have most on my radar is Tremaine Edmunds.  He’s got all the physical skills but doesn’t always take the right decisions, and in the games when Milano was out injured he just looked lost.  Not a bad player, but making him captain of the defence is not the right decision IMO.

 

Anyway, in hibernation now until we embark upon next season, hopefully in a Covid-free world… Go Bills !

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33 minutes ago, Jeff1954 said:

As mentioned above with our wide receivers, I would really like to know how many of our guys were carrying injuries today before making too many comments. There had to be some reason the coaches continued to let Kelse and Hill have so much room.

The season-long issues though are lack of a really effective pass rush outside Jerry Hughes, a running game which went from not that good to basically nonexistent, and run defence which ranged from iffy to appalling.

Despite these issues, the team had a terrific season, well beyond most of our expectations. There is continuity in the organisation, we have our franchise quarterback who will improve even further, and the needed culture change has been well and truly affected. Three trips to the playoffs in four years; with two playoff games won this year; show that this franchise is in a better place than it has been for decades.

When we get over today’s disappointment, we should all be able to enjoy  reflecting on a very successful year.

The run game basically went out the window when Moss went out.

 

Talk about injuries, as I think the entire receiving core was battling lingering injuries. The way they were being shadowed by the Chiefs DB's left Josh Allen with nobody open most plays. Hence all the QB runs.

 

Diggs normally gets most of the looks and makes his defensive counterpart look foolish attempting to cover him...not this game. 

 

13-3 and the AFC Championship was an awesome season considering most had the Bills for 7-9. 

 

 

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Going into this season the two things I wanted were a playoff win, and to know if we had our franchise QB.  I got both of those.

 

We got beat by a superior team.  No shame in that. But for the Bills to improve and overtake the Chiefs, we need to focus up front.  I expect a lot of turnover in the D line; need Star back to plug things up and a real pass rushing threat. I would look at moving Oliver around on the one to let him be more disruptive.  Need to continue working on the O line.  Both Feliciano and Williams looked bad yesterday.  And run blocking has to improve either by scheme or personnel.

 

Skill positions it would not surprise me to see Motor out next year.  Need a fast change of pace guy. I think we’re fine at WR and in the back 7.  Edmunds will keep improving and Dodson will replace Milano.  Smoke will be gone but McKensie and Isiah our 6th rounder last year will step in.  

 

McD said after the game that the Chiefs have a lot of speed.  I expect they’ll be adding speed all over the roster.

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10 minutes ago, oldmanfan said:

Going into this season the two things I wanted were a playoff win, and to know if we had our franchise QB.  I got both of those.

 

We got beat by a superior team.  No shame in that. But for the Bills to improve and overtake the Chiefs, we need to focus up front.  I expect a lot of turnover in the D line; need Star back to plug things up and a real pass rushing threat. I would look at moving Oliver around on the one to let him be more disruptive.  Need to continue working on the O line.  Both Feliciano and Williams looked bad yesterday.  And run blocking has to improve either by scheme or personnel.

 

Skill positions it would not surprise me to see Motor out next year.  Need a fast change of pace guy. I think we’re fine at WR and in the back 7.  Edmunds will keep improving and Dodson will replace Milano.  Smoke will be gone but McKensie and Isiah our 6th rounder last year will step in.  

 

McD said after the game that the Chiefs have a lot of speed.  I expect they’ll be adding speed all over the roster.

It took Andy Reid a long time to get over the hump. He never won the big one in Philly, then he had the Patriots to deal with in the AFC.  He persisted. His teams got better and better, and now they are on the verge of a Super Bowl repeat, and Reid may be viewed as one of the great all-time coaches. 

 

I see this Bills team in a similar situation.  They will continue to build and get better in order to get past KC.  It's going to take a few years, but it will happen. 

 

It was a great ride this season.

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Just now, oldmanfan said:

No way.  

I look at impact here. Was tre as good as the previous two seasons? Absolutely not.

 

Was that him? His teammates?

 

I don't know, but I know he wasn't near the player that earned that contract.

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Just now, Joe in Winslow said:

I look at impact here. Was tre as good as the previous two seasons? Absolutely not.

 

Was that him? His teammates?

 

I don't know, but I know he wasn't near the player that earned that contract.

I think he played well this year.  Yesterday he had to try and slow down to of the best in the business in Kelce and Hill.  No one slows those two down.

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Just now, oldmanfan said:

I think he played well this year.  Yesterday he had to try and slow down to of the best in the business in Kelce and Hill.  No one slows those two down.

You guys are generous.

 

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14 minutes ago, Joe in Winslow said:

I look at impact here. Was tre as good as the previous two seasons? Absolutely not.

 

Was that him? His teammates?

 

I don't know, but I know he wasn't near the player that earned that contract.

I think Chris Simms is right...Tre White is a good corner, but he cannot be considered an elite shut down corner because does play a lot of man-to-man coverage against the other teams top guy, like Lattimore and Ramsey.  Tonight we saw why.

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It is a bit of all 3. 

 

1. We don't have as much elite talent as KC. 

2. We don't have the experience they have in terms of coaching (those FG decisions McDermott made last night I don't love... but you know who lost a load of Championship games on baffling game management decisions early in his career as a Head Coach? Andy Reid)

3. Schematically we just do not match up that well against KC - they will have to find a better plan on offense for attacking Spags's defense but defensively... I honestly don't know what the answer is. You can't play man against Mahomes. The few snaps we tried it last night he burned us. We don't have good enough athletes to effectively play zone. 

 

But look, we have closed the gap in the last year. We have to stay the course. We will be back because we are too talented and too well coached for 90% of the NFL. We have to find a way to crack through that last 10%. 

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The Chiefs are a superior team and they played that way.  The only thing that might beat them in the long run here is the salary cap.  And to beat a superior team they have to make a lot of mistakes.  KC made a few but not enough and the Bills played far from perfect.  Still I was not too upset with the outcome.  If you're old enough to remember, the Kelly-era Bills also lost their first time in the AFC conference finals to the Bengals in 1988 before making their run.  From what I expected this Bills team arrived a year ahead of schedule.  I think the plan starts with a major overhaul of the defensive line, a couple upgrade on the offensive line, getting a big power back to share the load in the running game.  From a scheme perspective more run/pass balance on offense and less of the soft zone approach on defense assuming they can generate a decent pass rush with some upgrades and consistency. 

 

One more thing on defense from last night.  When the Raiders beat the Chiefs this season they filled in some 3 man rush fronts on third and longs which had good results.  Putting 8 into coverage.  I was hoping the Bills brain trust would watch that game film and fill in some of that in their game plan.  But they didn't. 

     

 

Edited by All_Pro_Bills
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1 hour ago, Nihilarian said:

The run game basically went out the window when Moss went out.

 

Talk about injuries, as I think the entire receiving core was battling lingering injuries. The way they were being shadowed by the Chiefs DB's left Josh Allen with nobody open most plays. Hence all the QB runs.

 

Diggs normally gets most of the looks and makes his defensive counterpart look foolish attempting to cover him...not this game. 

 

13-3 and the AFC Championship was an awesome season considering most had the Bills for 7-9. 

 

 

I disagree.  We never had a run game that scared anybody OR made them compromise their pass defense.

 

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