The bills could surprisingly hang with the Patriots for the majority of Monday Night Football . Then again, the Buffalo Offense missed his defense in a loss of 25-6.
Derek Anderson threw for 290 yards and an interception, the running game averaging only 2.4 yards per carry, and the bills failed to score a touchdown for the fourth time this season. They have now been kept out of the end zone for eight quarters.
When the Bills came into play, they already made a legitimate reason for being the worst offense ever. They had an average of just 3.9 yards per game before the eighth week and had only 81
On Monday evening, there was a particular trip that encapsulated their offensives.
The Bills had a glimmer of hope when they were back at 18-6 in the middle of the fourth quarter. They were just outside the Patriots' Red Zone and had a chance to score before the game quickly got out of hand.
The Bills scored a touchdown – until they did not
A few weeks ago, Derek Anderson was not even in the NFL. The 35-year-old journeyman quarterback was signed as mentor to rookie Josh Allen. Then, after Allen suffered an elbow injury and Nathan Peterman threw two interceptions at a loss to the Texans, Anderson was pushed into the starting lineup.
At second and -10 at the New England 25-yard line, Anderson was just trying to make something happen. If the bills ran a 12-point field goal after 6 minutes, they would still have two scores to retire the ball to Tom Brady, which essentially guarantees a loss. They needed a touchdown.
Anderson fired a shot into the end zone to defeat Jason Croom, who was initially scheduled for a touchdown. On closer inspection, it turns out that Croom has not even nearly reached a score. The ball fell very clearly to the ground.
The incompleteness brought them to third-and-10. Then the bills, which were called for more offensive penalties than any other league team, were pushed back a little more. A bad start by Charles Clay took him to third and 15th.
A horrible throw from Derek Anderson led to a winning goal
In this third case, Anderson fired a pass into the middle of the field like an open Charles Clay. He was not open.
Devin McCourty lurked in the middle of the field, catching the ball and returning him 84 yards to the house.
This was the 13th Interception – and second Pick-Six – by the Bills' three Quarterbacks this season. You've combined for just three passing touchdowns.
This interception put the Patriots ahead of what would be an insurmountable 19 points with 5:54 left in the game. The Next Gen Stats version of the game shows a dubious throw from Anderson – McCourty hid in sight.
Devin McCourty reached a top speed of 22.05 MPH on his 84-yard INT Return TD, the fastest of a ball-speed carrier this season.
– Next Gen Stats (@ NextGenStats) October 30, 2018
For the rest of the season there is not much Hope for Buffalo
The Bills could do nothing for the rest of the fourth quarter. Worse, Anderson left the game late with an injury. Peterman came for him and completed his two passes for 23 yards. When he entered, the bills were up against 32 and 32, so it did not matter – but they improved his passing game. Life is about the small victories.
Nathan Peterman just raised his career pass rating from 29.9 to 31.4 with these two games.
– Adam Stites (@AdamStites_) October 30, 2018
Anderson was rated after the game, but his injury status is unclear. The loss dropped the bills to 2-6, and if Anderson missed a lot of time, they could somehow be in worse shape than they already were. Allen probably will not be back soon, so their options are limited. They would have to plunge into the free agency or the trading market before the deadline on Tuesday … unless they want to reunite with Peterman, which is a bad situation for an offense that can not do anything.
On Monday night, a ride against the Patriots was a microcosm of the Bills' season to this point – and they showed that there is not much hope that things will get better.