Saturday, 22/9/2018 | 3:03 UTC+0

Bills’ defense shines in upset over Broncos

The Buffalo Bills shipped out several key pieces from the previous regime. Sammy Watkins, and Reggie Ragland were sent away already. Buffalo’s remake won’t end there.

Bills’ defense shines in upset over Broncos

Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported Sunday on GameDay Morning that Marcell Dareus is in the crosshairs heading into the 2017 season. Dareus signed a six-year, $96 million contract in 2015. He’s struggled since inking the cheap jerseys deal, compiling 5.5 combined sacks in the past two years.

“I am told he is in a make-or-break year for the Buffalo Bills, needs to show this administration he is in fact all in, to stay with this team,” Rapoport said of Dareus. “This is the same Marcell Dareus who got sent home for the third week of the preseason for violating a team rule. He does have a tough contract to get out from under, but this is a player — a really good player — who needs to show the team a lot during this 2017 season.”

After Buffalo generated just 10 yards in the first quarter, quarterback went on to author his best outing of the season, hitting 17 of his first 21 passes and throwing a pair of touchdowns. Generating just 176 total yards against Carolina last week, the Bills cooked up six scoring drives and battled with fury against one of the NFL’s stingiest defenses. The play of the game for Taylor came on a fourth-quarter scramble that saw the nimble runner stumble to his feet with Broncos defenders swarming, only to jump up and frolic for a 7-yard, chain-moving scramble and a fresh set of downs. The Bills went on to put Denver away with a chip-shot field goal just minutes later.

All that talk about the Bills tanking was ultra-rubbish. While the roster is missing pieces, Buffalo’s defense came to play once again for first-year coach Sean McDermott. A third-quarter sequence saw the Bills coax into an ugly pick before snuffing out a fake punt in Denver territory on the following drive. While Siemian showed flashes of arm strength, decisiveness and touch — making a pristine, highlight-reel throw down the sideline to Bennie Fowler — he also hurt the team with NFLĀ  and another second-half interception that displayed troubling decision-making. It’s a reminder that Siemian is still developing under center.

(8/36) spent the first two weeks of the season as the unquestioned engine of Denver’s offense. The fifth-year runner was a ghost on Sunday until ripping through the Bills for 32 yards, a second-quarter gallop that set up a 12-yard scoring run by Jamaal Charles. The former Chiefs star played a pivotal role for Denver on Sunday, gaining 56 yards and the touchdown off nine carries. The Bills had a tougher time corralling Charles, but Sunday’s outing saw Buffalo successfully force Siemian into a slew of ill-fated, third-down passing situations. Future opponents will take notice.

Nike Bills #52 Preston Brown Royal Blue Team Color Men's Stitched NFL Vapor Untouchable Limited Jersey

Nike Bills #52 Preston Brown Royal Blue Team Color Men’s Stitched NFL Vapor Untouchable Limited Jersey

“I think they had me pretty good, outnumbered three to one, with the coaches,” Peterman told the team’s official site. “Definitely different, being a little ghost town out there. I missed Tyrod and T.J. both. We have a good time out there. So hopefully they’ll get back quick.”

While Peterman might have to wait awhile to get his old friends back, it seems extremely likely the Bills will make a roster move at the position Monday. With even the club’s official site speculating on a quarterback signing, it’s safe to assume help is on the way.

In the meantime, this is not the worst scenario for Peterman, a high upside rookie out of Pittsburgh. Peterman is an even 34 of 68 so far this preseason (50 percent) with a touchdown and no picks. He’s been sacked three times. For the moment, he has the highest passer rating among the team’s three signal-callers this preseason but a lot of developing left to do with .

Quality reps for non-starters are hard to come by at this point in the preseason, especially with regular-season prep so close. While all eyes are on him, it could be time to make the most of this ghost town.