Bills give up a 25-point lead but escape with a win over the Rams to start 3-0

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Buffalo Bills’ Tyler Kroft, left, celebrates with teammates after catching a pass for a touchdown during the second half of an NFL football game against the Los Angeles Rams Sunday, Aug. 26, 2018, in Orchard Park, N.Y. The Bills won 35-32. (AP Photo/Adrian Kraus)

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (WIVB) – This was the Bills’ biggest test so far this season, one of many this year on a tough schedule in 2020 and what a great start for Buffalo in the first half, they ended up needing a last minute comeback to win this one over the Rams, 35-32.

It was a chance for the Bills to make a statement and show what kind of team they really are after playing two weaker opponents with the Dolphins and Jets. Beating the Rams says a lot about how far the Bills have come. Los Angeles has big time playmakers on both sides of the ball, something you can’t say about the previous two teams the Bills beat so this was a big win.

Let’s start with the first half for the Bills. Once again Buffalo’s offense was rolling in the first half and picked up right where it left off from the first two weeks.

After going three-and-out on their opening drive, the Bills found success running the ball with Devin Singletary carrying the load in the Bills backfield with Zack Moss out with a toe injury. But this drive needed not one, not two, but three touchdown catches to finally get on the board. Allen hit Stefon Diggs for what looked like a short touchdown pass but after review, the low pass hit the ground and was ruled incomplete.

Then the next touchdown catch was wiped out by a Bills holding penalty and a Rams roughing the passer call. Those penalties offset so they had to replay 3rd and goal. The Bills didn’t score until 4th and goal when Allen hit tight end Lee Smith for the touchdown.

After missing a 52-yard field goal on their opening drive, the Rams second series, despite moving the ball well, ended with a Levi Wallace interception. That’s a big play for Wallace to bounce back after having a tough game last week against Miami.

And the Bills capitalized. Right off the bat, Allen hit Gabriel Davis for 39 yards. That drive was capped off by an Allen one-yard touchdown run as they took a 14-0 lead.

When the Rams took over next, they got in a groove on the ground as Darrell Henderson had some big runs up the middle rushing for a couple first downs on this drive. But the Bills defense held strong and forced LA to settled for a field goal.

The Bills added another touchdown before the end of the half as Allen found tight end Tyler Kroft to take a 21-3 lead at halftime.

It says a lot about how far this Bills offense has come, the fact that their top two receivers with Stefon Diggs and John Brown had zero catches in the first half, Cole Beasley only had one and they still took a 21-3 lead.

Josh Allen and the Bills offense came out firing once again to start the second half. After the defense stopped LA on fourth down, Allen capped off their first drive of the second half with a touchdown pass to Stefon Diggs who beat Jalen Ramsey on the play.

But the Rams started to wake up after that. We’ve seen the Bills struggle in the third quarter and he’s another example. First LA got on the board as Jared Goff punched it in himself and found the end zone for the first time in the game.

Then what looked like a great catch by Tyler Kroft, coming down with a bad throw by Allen, one of the few bad decisions he’s made this season, but instead it’s ruled an interception and offensive pass interference on Kroft. The penalty was declined and the Rams took over. Goff hit Robert Woods on a short pass and Woods did the rest taking it 25 yards to the end zone. Rams cut the lead, 28-17.

LA strikes once again after the Bills couldn’t do anything on their next possession. Goff finds a wide open Cooper Kupp for the touchdown. They go for two and Goff finds Tyler Higbee in the endzone and the Rams make it a 28-25 game.

Things only went downhill from there for the Bills. Aaron Donald really made his presence known in this second half, so much that he came up with a strip sack on Josh Allen and recovered which the Rams also capitalized on as Darrell Henderson scored to put the Rams up 32-28 after the extra point.

On their next drive, the Bills of course couldn’t settle for a field goal, they needed to find the end zone. And on 4th and 9 at the Rams’ 14-yard line, Allen threw an incomplete pass but LA was called for pass interference which gave the Bills new life. On 1st and goal from the 4-yard line, Allen finds Tyler Kroft again for the go-ahead touchdown. Tyler Bass made the extra point to give Buffalo a 35-32 lead and that would do it.

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