Jump to content

Why cant the Bills win close games?


stl4life07

Recommended Posts

They have lost seven straight one score games. Thats a very bad trend. Why? Bc we know in the playoffs games will be tight. The Bills wont be blowing out every team in the playoffs. They are going to have to start winning close games or else they wont be winning the Superbowl.

For me I think its coaching. When I think of teams able more than not win close games Im thinking of the Pats, the Rams, the Chiefs. The coaches of those teams are Belichick, McVay, and Reid. They just know how to find ways to win. We know more games are lost than won. The Bills debacle at the end of the Dolphins game where they couldnt spike the ball. I think about last season against the Titans where Allen literally slips and falls failing to convert late in the game and they lose. That playoff game against the Chiefs where they couldnt hold on to the lead with 13 seconds left in regulation. Like things like that for me falls more on the coaching in McDermott. I think he is a really good coach but in order to be among the best of the best he has to get his team to win close games. Dont have to win all of the close games but win some of them. If they cant do so then Im telling you that will be their achillies heel come the playoffs.

Edited by stl4life07
Link to comment
Share on other sites

As @TecmoSuperJoe said, these tend to be fickle. That's one of the things you look at (along with fumble luck) when trying to figure out who will improve and regress leading into a season. 

Since Mcdermott took over in 2017, they have been: 

6-2 in 2017 (6-3 with playoffs)

3-3 in 2018

4-5 in 2019 (4-6 with playoffs)

5-1 in 2020 (6-1 with playoffs)

0-5 in 2021 (0-6 w/playoffs) 

 

Last year the offense really struggled in several of the games, and it really wasn't about "closing games out". In their 5 losses, they scored 16, 31, 6, 10, 24. The game against the Bucs they were actually down 24-3 and scored 17 straight in the 4th to force overtime where they lost to Brady. 

Just one of those things sometimes. I think the expectation is that you're typically .500 in these situations and they are right around there over his tenure. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 score games are completely random, if you look at every team in the NFL you'll see similar mass variance in their 1 score games year over year. It just is one of those things, once you condense a game down to one snap, one play, one variable outcome, you can't really judge it. It becomes a matter of chance, of luck.

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 minutes ago, Forge said:

As @TecmoSuperJoe said, these tend to be fickle. That's one of the things you look at (along with fumble luck) when trying to figure out who will improve and regress leading into a season. 

Since Mcdermott took over in 2017, they have been: 

6-2 in 2017 (6-3 with playoffs)

3-3 in 2018

4-5 in 2019 (4-6 with playoffs)

5-1 in 2020 (6-1 with playoffs)

0-5 in 2021 (0-6 w/playoffs) 

 

Last year the offense really struggled in several of the games, and it really wasn't about "closing games out". In their 5 losses, they scored 16, 31, 6, 10, 24. The game against the Bucs they were actually down 24-3 and scored 17 straight in the 4th to force overtime where they lost to Brady. 

Just one of those things sometimes. I think the expectation is that you're typically .500 in these situations and they are right around there over his tenure. 

Like to example my "it's all luck" take, one of those one score games last year was the Patriots game we played in a god damn hurricane.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 minutes ago, Forge said:

As @TecmoSuperJoe said, these tend to be fickle. That's one of the things you look at (along with fumble luck) when trying to figure out who will improve and regress leading into a season. 

Since Mcdermott took over in 2017, they have been: 

6-2 in 2017 (6-3 with playoffs)

3-3 in 2018

4-5 in 2019 (4-6 with playoffs)

5-1 in 2020 (6-1 with playoffs)

0-5 in 2021 (0-6 w/playoffs) 

 

Last year the offense really struggled in several of the games, and it really wasn't about "closing games out". In their 5 losses, they scored 16, 31, 6, 10, 24. The game against the Bucs they were actually down 24-3 and scored 17 straight in the 4th to force overtime where they lost to Brady. 

Just one of those things sometimes. I think the expectation is that you're typically .500 in these situations and they are right around there over his tenure. 

Yup. I look at this every year. Typically a mix of turnover luck, strength of schedule, injuries, and record in close games. They all virtually always regress to the mean in extreme situations. There are some exceptions, like Tom Brady has always been an outlier in the close games thing, it always look like he should regress and he almost never does, but that makes sense for obvious reasons. But ultimately, the odds of this continuing are very, very low. 6 games is still a very small sample size.

Additionally, more specific to the Bills, the Bills aren't really a team that lets up. From years of watching the Chiefs, it's clear when Andy Reid thinks the game is in hand. The Cardinals game could've been a 40 point win if he wanted it to be, but he likes to hold plays back, Spags stops putting blitzes on film, etc., when the time versus score equation just isn't winnable for the opposition. Buffalo is far, far less interested in this, for better or worse. Josh Allen had multiple scrambles and 100 yards worth of deep passes in the 4th quarter of the Bills/Rams game. They probably didn't need to do some of that up 14 against a team that clearly didn't have it that day. But they're a foot on the throat kind of team. So some games that would be one score wins for other teams, don't wind up that way for Buffalo. A more conservative team doesn't chuck it deep to Diggs midway through the 4th, and runs clock instead, then goes deep zones on D and let's the other team get a slow but pointless TD at the end of the game, and wins 24-17 instead of 31-10. Would've been basically the same win but with a different mentality, and it would check the box of a one score win.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

22 minutes ago, Thelonebillsfan said:

1 score games are completely random, if you look at every team in the NFL you'll see similar mass variance in their 1 score games year over year. It just is one of those things, once you condense a game down to one snap, one play, one variable outcome, you can't really judge it. It becomes a matter of chance, of luck.

I wouldn't go so far as completely random. QB play and coaching tends to equalize something like this over time. But for a sample size as small as 6 games, pretty damn random, yeah. Honestly, Josh Allen having a bad year plus in close games is proof of some of the randomness, though, given that the one thing that has typically bucked this regression to the mean in the years I've tracked it has been great QB play.

Of course, the fun thing about it, is just as the difference between a one score win and a one score loss is kind of random, so really is the difference between a one score win and a two score win. Like, the Bills beat the Falcons by two scores because Matt Ryan got flagged for taunting on what he thought was a TD. Had that penalty not happened, Atlanta has good odds of scoring from the one, the Bills still run out the clock as they did, and it's 29-22 instead of 29-15, box checked again. And there's probably a handful of these across those 6 or 7 games or whatever it is.

Also, let's be real here. OP probably saw this stat brought up by Nick Wright, today. I love Nick Wright. He's an unabashed Chiefs homer and is incredibly loud about it, so as a Chiefs fan, it's really entertaining to hear him just talk about how amazing we've been these past few years. Loads of fun for me, miserable for everyone else. But without a doubt, the dude is unbelievably biased if it's Chiefs or Chiefs adjacent. And how good the Bills are or aren't definitely qualifies as Chiefs adjacent.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

47 minutes ago, Jakuvious said:

I wouldn't go so far as completely random. QB play and coaching tends to equalize something like this over time. But for a sample size as small as 6 games, pretty damn random, yeah. Honestly, Josh Allen having a bad year plus in close games is proof of some of the randomness, though, given that the one thing that has typically bucked this regression to the mean in the years I've tracked it has been great QB play.

Of course, the fun thing about it, is just as the difference between a one score win and a one score loss is kind of random, so really is the difference between a one score win and a two score win. Like, the Bills beat the Falcons by two scores because Matt Ryan got flagged for taunting on what he thought was a TD. Had that penalty not happened, Atlanta has good odds of scoring from the one, the Bills still run out the clock as they did, and it's 29-22 instead of 29-15, box checked again. And there's probably a handful of these across those 6 or 7 games or whatever it is.

Also, let's be real here. OP probably saw this stat brought up by Nick Wright, today. I love Nick Wright. He's an unabashed Chiefs homer and is incredibly loud about it, so as a Chiefs fan, it's really entertaining to hear him just talk about how amazing we've been these past few years. Loads of fun for me, miserable for everyone else. But without a doubt, the dude is unbelievably biased if it's Chiefs or Chiefs adjacent. And how good the Bills are or aren't definitely qualifies as Chiefs adjacent.

I actually saw that stat on SVP last night and couldnt believe it. I knew the Bills struggled lately in one score games but I didnt know they lost seven straight one score games.

I get one score games can be random. Heck the Rams shouldve been up 27-9 against the Cards but Akers fumbled and the Cards went down the field to kick a field goal to make it 20-12 and the Rams won by 8pts which is one score. So yeah one score games can be random but there is nothing random about losing a playoff game when you are up with 13 seconds left. There is nothing random about losing to the Titans last season on MNF bc Allen literally slipped and couldnt convert that wouldve given more than likely given the Bills the win had he converted.

Like I dont think seven straight games is a small sample size at all. But I do agree with what one poster said about other years under McDermott so maybe things will start to work out in the Bills favor again. My thinking too is the Bills rely so much on Allen to do everything that late in the 4th quarter if its close its like how much does he have left? Its like KD with the Nets against the Bucks in the playoffs. KD played every minute and hit the game-tying shot which shouldve won the game had his toe not been on the line. So it went into OT and KD literally had nothing left and the Nets lost by 4pts. If Allen had a running game to lean on or ask to do lesser maybe things would be different in some of these games. Dude literally threw the ball 63x and ran it another 8x. Thats alot to ask for one man. And its not like the Bills were trailing by 3tds the entire game. It was close and he still was throwing it 63x. Thats just not good. Cant ask Allen to be Superman every game especially in the Miami heat or last season in the horrible weather when they played the Pats.

Edited by stl4life07
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yea I mean there are TONS of one score games where the team trailing by a score never touches the ball, ergo they never have a chance to tie. To me that's not the same as a game where the other team does have a chance to tie or win.

Like the last two Rams games - there was a moment where I thought the Falcons might actually take the lead. That never happened with Arizona. But both will go down as one score "luck" games for the Rams. All the funnier because had Cam Akers not fumbled, it's actually possible we beat the Cardinals by three scores instead of one.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 9/26/2022 at 10:02 PM, stl4life07 said:

They have lost seven straight one score games. Thats a very bad trend. Why? Bc we know in the playoffs games will be tight. The Bills wont be blowing out every team in the playoffs. They are going to have to start winning close games or else they wont be winning the Superbowl.

For me I think its coaching. When I think of teams able more than not win close games Im thinking of the Pats, the Rams, the Chiefs. The coaches of those teams are Belichick, McVay, and Reid. They just know how to find ways to win. We know more games are lost than won. The Bills debacle at the end of the Dolphins game where they couldnt spike the ball. I think about last season against the Titans where Allen literally slips and falls failing to convert late in the game and they lose. That playoff game against the Chiefs where they couldnt hold on to the lead with 13 seconds left in regulation. Like things like that for me falls more on the coaching in McDermott. I think he is a really good coach but in order to be among the best of the best he has to get his team to win close games. Dont have to win all of the close games but win some of them. If they cant do so then Im telling you that will be their achillies heel come the playoffs.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 9/27/2022 at 1:32 AM, stl4life07 said:

 

I get one score games can be random. Heck the Rams shouldve been up 27-9 against the Cards but Akers fumbled and the Cards went down the field to kick a field goal to make it 20-12 and the Rams won by 8pts which is one score. So yeah one score games can be random but there is nothing random about losing a playoff game when you are up with 13 seconds left. There is nothing random about losing to the Titans last season on MNF bc Allen literally slipped and couldnt convert that wouldve given more than likely given the Bills the win had he converted.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

While 1 score games are completely random and arbitrary and I subscribe to the law of averages, if you're looking for a "reason", I'd say that closing out games in traditional ways in terms of running the football in terms of committing to it and succeeding at it are a definitive weakness of this team, specifically from the RB spot.

When healthy, their defense is elite, as is their passing game.

Their OL is capable but not great, and their running game is bottom third of the league.

Often times, they have that "Mike Tyson effect" where they knock you out before the game really starts and you have zero chance of coming back, but teams who keep it close have found ways to be successful.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...