The Philadelphia Eagles (3-4) and Buffalo Bills (5-1) are set to play at New Era Field on Sunday. In order to preview this Week 8 matchup, I reached out to our associates over at Buffalo Rumblings. The considerate Corey Giacovelli kindly took the time to answer my questions about the upcoming game. Let’s take a look at his answers. Also, don’t forget to check out my side of the Q&A exchange over at BR.
1 - I see there’s an article on Buffalo Rumblings titled: “5-1 should feel better than this.” I also see Buffalo ranks 21st in DVOA. Just how good is this team?
This team is good but we feel like they can be great. The defense is legit and will keep the team in the game almost every time but we would like to see the offense get better. There has been a couple games this year like the Bengals and Dolphins game for example where it feels like it should not have been a game for as long as it should have. Against the Bengals they blew a big lead before coming back and against the Dolphins they were settling for field goals in the first half. The Bills are a good football team but they like making us sweat it out for four quarters.
2 - Josh Allen has 7 TD and 7 INT this year for a 80.2 passer rating. What’s the confidence level in him?
We believe in Josh Allen and a lot of fans have that ride and die mentality for him. We know there will be bad moments that come along with the good and all we ask is that he grows from them. When Allen does not turn the ball over this team starts to click on all cylinders and the offense starts moving. Against the Patriots was a good example because of how bad he started but fans still had confidence in him. Then in the second half he led that opening touchdown drive and was clicking before getting injured. Josh gives it his all for this team and he is a fighter so fans will continue to believe in him until something changes.
3 - How would you grade the job that former Eagles defensive coordinator and current Bills head coach Sean McDermott has done so far through his Buffalo tenure?
I would give McDermott an A. This guy has changed the entire culture of the team in such a short time and the guys believe in each other and what they can accomplish. This team plays with a chip on their shoulder and not only gives it their all for each other but for the city of Buffalo. Sean has created his ideal defense like the one he had in Carolina and they are among the best in the league the past two season. He was even able to break the playoff drought when many did not expect him to. If McDermott is able to give the Bills another post season birth this season then I can easily see him being the coach of this football team for a long, long time.
4 - If you were building a game plan for the Bills, how would you attack them on both offense and defense?
To attack the Bills on offense you need to make Allen uncomfortable in the pocket. Get him moving and try to bait him into some bad throws that he has been known to do in the past. However, if you get him moving in the pocket, you need to make sure that you have someone spying him because his legs can be just as deadly as him arm and he can make something out of nothing. Defensively, you have to run a lot of misdirection to try to get guys out of place. You can try to get the running game going like Miami did but part of the reason for the success was Matt Millano missing the game but he may be back for Sunday. This defense is hard to beat long but don’t be afraid to take some deep shots to flip field position.
5 - Who wins this game and why? Score prediction? And what are your expectations for the rest of this Bills season?
I am going with the Bills not because of my bias but because of the momentum they have and this game being in Buffalo. I think that the injuries have become to much for the Eagles and the secondary is really beat up. I can see the final score being around 24-17 but I am excited to see what can happen. For the rest of the season I expect the Bills to be in every single game and still give the Patriots a run for their money in December for the division which is something that hasn’t been the case in years.