Howard Picks the Bills: Week 11

November 12, 2019 - 9:22 am
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Heading into this past Sunday's matchup with the Cleveland Browns, the Buffalo Bills were 6-2 in the standings and were looking to get to the 7-2 mark for the first time since the 1993 season.

On the flip side, the Browns were a struggling 2-6 team who had failed to exceed expectations in the first half of the season, and also were starting to show their frustrations on and off the field.

It was a typical Bills-Browns matchup at FirstEnergy Stadium in Cleveland with a low scoring affair and not a lot of offense to speak of for a large portion of this game.

The Bills took a 16-12 lead with less than six minutes to go in the fourth quarter thanks to a touchdown run from quarterback Josh Allen, but that gave Baker Mayfield and the Browns plenty of time to charge down the field for the go-ahead touchdown drive.

However, Cleveland did give the Bills some time of their own to either steal the win back on the road or tie the game to force the 10-minute overtime. Buffalo got as far as the Browns' 35-yard line before lining up for a 53-yard field goal from kicker Stephen Hauschka, but his attempt ended up falling just a bit short and wide-left.

While a loss may not look so bad for the now 6-3 Bills, their problems are starting to stand out more with this team on both sides of the football.

The offensive play calling has been more perplexing as the season rolls along with some questionable decisions in certain situations. While he can make some big plays with his arm or his feet, second-year quarterback Josh Allen has not been able to hit on the deep throw this season, missing on a number of shots down the field.

On the defensive side of the ball, other teams are starting to expose a weak run defense that has given up a combined 492 yards in the last three games. And while the Buffalo defense has looked very good, almost unstoppable, at times, this season, they have still had some ill-timed breakdowns that allow the opposition to extend drives.

The Bills will hope to rebound for their tough loss this week as they head down to Miami, Florida to take on a suddenly surging Dolphins team, who has won their last two games after starting the season 0-7.

It will be the second and last time this season that the Bills will face their AFC East rivals. Buffalo was able to pull out a 31-21 win over the Dolphins back in Week 7 of the season at New Era Field, but Miami was able to give the Bills a scare with a fast start to the contest.

Buffalo will have to bring their A-game this week if they want improve to 7-3 and avoid the talks of a potential collapse similar to the 2008 season, where that team got off to a 5-1 start to the season.

After a 24-9 win over the Washington Redskins, Howard Simon was still feeling positive about the 2019 season, picking the Bills to go 11-5 in last week's edition of "Howard Picks the Bills." However, after the disappointing loss to the Browns this past week, Howard's picks have dipped to 9-7, which potentially puts Buffalo in a spot where the team may miss the playoffs after a good start to the year.

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