STRATEGY AND PERSONNEL
Inside Slant | Notes, Quotes | Strategy and Personnel |
QB Kyle Orton has thrown for 1,810 yards in his seven games as the Bills starting QB. He has 12 TDs and only 3 interceptions.
DE Mario Williams leads all defensive ends in the NFL with 12 sacks.
SS Duke Williams made the first interception of his NFL career in the victory over the Jets.
DE Jerry Hughes is coming a game where he had five tackles, two sacks, and three QB hits.
RB Fred Jackson now has 5,390 career rushing yards - the third highest total by a undrafted running back in NFL history. He passed Willie Parker (5,378).
TE Chris Gragg suffered a knee injury in the victory over the Jets and did not practice Wednesday.
TE Lee Smith was ill Wednesday and did not practice, but he is expected to be fine for the game against Cleveland.
WR Robert Woods had an issue with an ankle and was a limited participant in practice, but Doug Marrone expects him to play Sunday.
WR Marcus Thigpen was claimed off waivers by the Bills. The team released DE Bryan Johnson to make room on the roster.
The Bills are coming off one of their best performances of the season, but now the task gets a little tougher as they face the Browns in another must-win game, this one against a fellow playoff contender.
Quarterback Kyle Orton took advantage of the Jets' constant double-covering of Sammy Watkins to feed the ball to wide receiver Robert Woods who had the best game of his career. The Browns are much more stout in the secondary, though, so the Bills will look to pound away at a run defense that ranks 29th in the NFL, utilizing their three-headed backfield of Fred Jackson, Anthony Dixon, and Bryce Brown.
On defense, the Bills lead the league in sacks with 46, and they can generate pressure with just their front four. If they can get after Brian Hoyer, he is a QB who can make poor decisions and throw interceptions. Of course, Hoyer now has Josh Gordon at his disposal, and the star WR had a big game in his return from a 10-game suspension. The Browns can also move the ball on the ground, and they'll need to do so in order to try and slow down Buffalo's pass rush.
MATCHUPS TO WATCH
Bills DE Jerry Hughes vs. Browns LT Joe Thomas.
Thomas is one of the best in the league, and he'll need to be in order to slow down the speedy Hughes who has 9.5 sacks. Hughes will rush primarily from the right, so that will leave Mario Williams to go go against RT Mitchell Schwartz, and if the Bills have success on the edges, Brian Hoyer could be in for a long day.
Bills RB Fred Jackson vs. Browns SS Donte Whitner.
After their verbal sparring during the week, this should be an interesting battle. Jackson is a tough runner who won't shy away from contact, and Whitner likes to come into the box and hit, too. Also, Jackson is a vital piece of the short passing game, and there will be situations where Whitner will either be in coverage, or coming up to tackle Jackson. This will be fun to watch.