By Brandon J. Koch
The Buffalo Bills kick off week 2 of the season in Carolina to take on the Panthers.
Buffalo is entering Sunday 1-0, with a nine point victory last week over division rival New York Jets.
So what are the keys for a 2-0 Bills start? Time to dissect this matchup.
Take away the Panthers run game: I know it’s easier said then done, but the Bills need to make Cam Newton throw the football. Make the Panthers one demensional. Yes, it’s a tough task. First there’s Jonathan Stewart and rookie Christian McCaffery, then added Cam Newton. But the one thing the Bills have going for them that they’re doing well? Tackling. Sean McDermott has been preaching fundamentals. If the Bills can tackle, they will stop the run. The Panthers are limiting the times Newton takes off, so with a sore arm and shoulder, taking away the run is key for this defense.
Offense has thier work cut out for the them: I really like this Panthers defense. First, thier defensive line is very good with Kawann Short leading the way, then Star Lotulelei. Richie Incognito and Eric Wood have thier hands full. I am concerned about Jordan Mills and John Miller. The Panthers like to move around thier ends and will matchup Charles Johnson with Mills. Not good for this offense. So Rick Dennison has got to keep to the short, get the ball out quick principles. Also Tyrod has got to move around in the pocket, I liked the roll out passes, get the receivers open.
Power run game. LeSean McCoy is off to a great start, I hope that continues Sunday. I know I started off with the passing game, but we all know the running the football is this offenses bread and butter. Control clock, get McCoy touches via runs or passes. Mike Tolbert will get his share of carries to keep Shady fresh. If the run game doesn’t click, it could be a long day for this offense.
Finishing drives: There were a couple times last week where the Bills offense stalled and missed out on points. They can’t do that against this Panthers team. If the Bills offense can come out on drives and have sustainability and work the clock and put up points, they will come out of Carolina with a win.
Get a big special teams play: I know it’s special teams, but if the Bills can make a big play in ethier the punt return avenue or a turnover, that can be a difference in this game. I liked the way special teams covered and tackled last week. Brandon Tate had some nice returns as well.
What do you see vitle to a Bills victory? Leave something in the comment section.
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