Around the NFL  

 

LeSean McCoy runs wild as Bills ruin Kap's return

Print

Colin Kaepernick's return was no match for a Bills team that is on a roll. Here's what we learned from Buffalo's 45-16 victory.

1. The attention has been on the Bills' defense, but this was another game won Rex's dream offense. LeSean McCoy and Tyrod Taylor are making strong cases as the toughest players to tackle in the NFL at their respective positions. McCoy overcame an injury scare to shake and bake past 49ers tacklers from a variety of formations for 140 yards and three scores. Taylor (68 rushing yards) repeatedly beat free rushers and scrambled to buy time before converting third and long. This team knows how to play with a lead.

2. Kaepernick was an upgrade from Blaine Gabbert, which is damning faint praise. Kaepernick's throws were erratic on a gusty day in Orchard Park, but he is clearly a better scrambler than Gabbert, showing impressive vision on the way to 66 rushing yards. Kaepernick avoided big mistakes while completing 13 of 29 passes for 187 yards and a score, however, he is hardly a cure-all for this team's problems.

3. The final score is misleading. It was a one-score game late in the third quarter but Buffalo's run-heavy approach wore down a 49ers defense that has been on the field more than any team in football. The Bills finished with 312 yards rushing. This is a team handing the ball off to McCoy on third-and-22 and converting. Rex's change to Anthony Lynn as offensive coordinator has shown immediate dividends in four consecutive wins.

4. It's sad to see Chip Kelly punt on fourth-and-2 from the Bills' 40-yard line. It's also sad to see a Chip Kelly team utterly incapable of picking up short yardage situations.

5. The career years for Bills linebackers Zach Brown (two tackles for loss and a sack) and Lorenzo Alexander (sack, forced fumble and pass defensed) continues unabated. This defense is going to be nasty when they get Marcell Dareus and Shaq Lawson back.

Print