The Brawl in Buffalo: Sometimes ‘Being a Man’ Means Punching Someone Who Is Wearing a Helmet
On the Monday Morning NFL Podcast, Andy Benoit and Gary Gramling analyzed the brawl in Buffalo, Josh Allen’s revenge and the Bills’ win over the Jaguars…
GARY: Let’s go to Jaguars-Bills. We had the brawl in this game. Leonard Fournette shouldn’t throw punches anyway because the Jaguars need him, but he especially shouldn’t throw punches at a guy who is wearing helmet when you’re not wearing a helmet. That’s a doubly bad idea.
ANDY: I think that’s being a man. A man who lets down his team in crunch time, no less. That takes even more manhood. Get yourself ejected for fighting a below-average defensive lineman when you’re the star running back. I think that’s really being a man.
GARY: The comeuppance came so fast on that. They were first-and-goal on the six-inch line. The false start may have happened if Fournette was in the backfield anyway, but they backed themselves up so quickly with a couple penalties and end up missing a 42-yard field goal. The Bills just took the ball and it was a three-play drive Josh Allen needed for the go-ahead score there. That turned around so quickly.
Fournette’s got to be better than that, yes. I will say, Josh Allen, he’s incredibly green and he’s surrounded by a not very good supporting cast, but he made a couple of spectacular plays in this one. I still can’t believe that touchdown throw to Robert Foster because he was being swallowed up by three guys as he let that ball go.
ANDY: 75-yard touchdown under severe duress, knowing the hit is coming, releasing the ball as the hit is coming and he throws a big-time spiral. If we’re isolating just the arm and taking out the legs, that’s probably the best throw we’ve seen all season.
GARY: It was incredible and it was just shocking to see on the broadcast angle because it looked like a sack. He had three black jerseys basically draped on him, converging on him, and all of a sudden that ball pops out of there. You would’ve thought it was some sort of CGI glitch.
I’ll say this about Josh Allen, because a lot of Bills talk is, “Oh, Patrick Mahomes, we could’ve had Mahomes.” And yes the Bills should have taken Patrick Mahomes, everybody should have taken Pat Mahomes and should be kicking themselves over that. I’m not about to argue Allen is in the same class as Mahomes, but I will say, Josh Allen is winning games throwing to guys like Robert Foster and Jason Croom and Isaiah McKenzie.
ANDY: He won a game. He won this game. Josh Allen’s been out several weeks and he was very up and down before this injury.
GARY: He won a game in Minnesota, Andy. That’s a win.
ANDY: You know what stood out in this game particularly to me, and I was surprised this wasn’t a bigger factor earlier this season, is Josh Allen can really run. His mobility is an asset. I think he’s in the Cam Newton class for talent there… I think he’s in the class. I think Cam Newton sits at the front of that class, Josh Allen probably sits in the middle rows, maybe near the back, but he’s in that small classroom with Cam Newton of guys that can really hurt you with their legs. The reason I bring up Newton is Allen can do it as a power runner. He’s 245 pounds, but there’s some load behind his movement. He scrambled a lot, which he’s going to do because he doesn’t always see things clearly, but I thought the scrambles for the most part were appropriate. There were some designed runs with him. He had a touchdown run on a quarterback draw. The read-options were not successful, but I love the concept. I love that they’re using him in that way. They need to use Josh Allen almost the exact same way as the Panthers use Cam Newton. It’s going to be a watered-down version because Allen’s a few years away from running that kind of expansive offense, but that’s how it has to be. Josh Allen is the next Cam Newton if everything goes well.
GARY: I said that so much last spring and I took so much crap for it. This is the last thing I’ll say about this game. The Jaguars are not going anywhere even had they won this game, but Andrew Norwell went out in this one so they’re done on the offensive line. I don’t know what they can do offensively going forward. It was a lost season and now it’s a really lost season.
ANDY: A note on that offensive line because it absolutely humiliated the Bills in the first half of this game. They moved the line of scrimmage and just ran between the tackles for 10-12 yards every snap it seemed like and yet here they are losing the game. They did the same last week against Pittsburgh. What I’ve come to learn from Jacksonville is, I think your running game is only as good as the passing game that comes off your running game. If you’re just going to ram the ball down the other team’s throat, that’s all good and well, but it’s not going to win the game for you over the course of 60 minutes in today’s NFL. You’ve got to have a passing game that relates to your running game and it’s got to be effective. Jacksonville has that, but it hasn’t been effective.
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Also on this week’s edition of The Monday Morning Podcast:
1:37—Vikings beat Packers in battle for survival, the NFC playoff picture
8:55—Colts keep rolling, Adam Gase gets too conservative in Indy
16:04—Seattle wins the way they want to in Carolina
20:26—Steelers keep giving it away, let one get away to the Broncos who are FOR REAL!
25:34—The champs stay alive, Odell Beckham Jr. isn’t happy about it
29:29—Piling on Hue Jackson some more
34:15—Bills and Jaguars brawl in Buffalo, Leonard Fournette is a man, Josh Allen does really good things
39:59—Bucs handle Niners
40:24—The end of Reuben Foster in San Francisco
42:41— LIGHNING(ish) ROUND!
• Ravens win again, ready to keep rolling with Lamar Jackson
• Patriots roll over the Jets
• Philip Rivers nears perfection, oh man that Cardinals defense
48:50— Andy and Gary each pick their “Thing of the Week” awards
50:59— Andy and Gary discuss the sounds of the holiday season
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