ORCHARD PARK, NY – After a miserable offensive showing in Week 3, requests for rookie Nathan Peterman to take over at quarterback are regaining steam among fans. Inside team facilities at One Bills Dr. though, the confidence in starting QB Tyrod Taylor hasn’t wavered. Head coach Sean McDermott reaffirmed Taylor as the team’s starter earlier in the week, then on Wednesday Taylor’s backfield-mate, running back LeSean McCoy, came to his defense.
“I haven’t heard that,” McCoy said snickering, in regards to the murmurs about benching Taylor. “I guess [Tyrod] gets blamed for everything. But I don’t think so. Tyrod is a hell of a player. Without him we would of had no shot last week. He made some plays, things wasn’t blocked well, he got out of it. Certain plays I didn’t help him out. A lot of people don’t see those types of things, but you know he’ll get blamed for it. I haven’t heard that yet, but I’m sure that’ll start up. I have a lot of confidence in Tyrod and the guys on the team and offense, we do too. ”
For what it’s worth, Taylor was the most productive player on the Bills offense in Week 2, completing 17 of his 25 passes for 125 yards, while adding a team-best 55 yards on the ground. Still, those numbers aren’t exactly eye-popping and left much to be desired from the most important position in football.
Not helping Taylor’s case is the fact that his receiving corps struggled to create separation from opposing defenders. Despite that noticeable deficiency, McDermott doesn’t believe there’s a lack of speed at the position.
“I do feel we have enough speed at receiver, I do, McDermott stated. “That is one of the areas that we need to improve on, our winning the one-on-ones as I alluded to earlier, whether physically or with speed, find ways to win one-on-one matchups.”
From the quarterback’s perspective, Taylor agreed, even suggesting a few receivers who can help the offense stretch the field and not look so one-dimensional.
“You face good corners each and every week,” the 28-year-old explained. “There’s gonna be one-on-one battles that we have to win. I have confidence in the guys that line up at wide receiver for us and we’re gonna make those one-on-one battles work in our favor.
“We’re going to have to pick and choose when we take our shots downfield and be able just to have that threat of going downfield. And we have the players on this team: Kaelin [Clay] and Brandon [Tate], are some of the more quicker guys that can run down the field. As well as Zay [Jones], Andre [Holmes]; those guys can stretch the field.”
Whether it’s Taylor’s own deficiencies, his lack of chemistry with this unfamiliar receiving corps or a lack of speed at the receiver position, the Panthers may have provided other NFL teams with an obvious blueprint to neutralize the Bills offense. Shut down the run game and make Taylor throw the football.
Taylor seems to think otherwise.
“I don’t think that they set the blueprint,” he said. “We have a very strong running game and it’s proven over the years and even this year in the first game. We just gotta continue to do what we do well.”
For Taylor’s sake, he better hope other teams can’t mimick the Panthers’ gameplan with similar success, or the calls for Peterman to start will only get louder.
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