Tale Of The Tape: Buffalo Bills At New Orleans Saints

Buffalo Bills
New Orleans Saints
(credit: Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)
(credit: Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
(credit: Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)
(credit: Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
The Bills may not be one of the elite teams in the league, but rookie head coach Doug Marrone has a team that impresses you with its intensity. One of the reasons for that is the performance of Thad Lewis at quarterback, who has stepped in nicely for injured rookie E.J. Manuel. Lewis is completing 62.5 percent of his passes and is 1-1 in his two starts.
Winner Drew Brees gives the Saints a huge advantage at the quarterback position nearly every week. This is not one of the exceptions to that situation. Brees reads defenses as well as any quarterback in the league and he takes advantage of that ability by throwing with accuracy. While not a legitimate running threat, he can scramble out of the pocket.
Fred Jackson is a very tough running back. He took a shot against the Miami Dolphins and had to leave the field because of knee pain, but he came back and scored a touchdown. While Stevie Johnson may be a selfish diva at the WR position, he can make key catches when the game is on the line. Robert Woods is an emerging talent at the wide receiver position but he lacks consistency.
Winner The Saints are not getting much of a contribution from their running game because Pierre Thomas does not seem to be running with much purpose. Darren Sproles is a solid pass catcher who excels on third downs. Tight end Jimmy Graham is the best at his position in the league, and he excels when the Saints get in the red zone. Marques Colston is a tough receiver who catches the ball in traffic.
Winner The Bills were able to come through with a road win over the Dolphins largely because their defense came through at big moments. Nobody was more impressive than defensive end Mario Williams, who had two fourth-quarter sacks as well as a forced fumble. Outside linebacker Kiko Alonso has the speed to make tackles sideline to sideline.
Winner The Saints have improved dramatically on defense this season as they rank 11th overall and eight against the pass. Middle linebacker Curtis Lofton has a team-high 47 tackles, while strong safety Kenny Vaccaro has 33 tackles, four passes defensed and an interception. Defensive end Cameron Jordan leads the Saints with 5.0 sacks and has excellent quickness coming around the corner.
Special Teams
The Bills have not been good in their punt coverage and they gave up a touchdown return earlier this year. Veteran punt returner Jim Leonard can follow his blocks, but he lacks explosive speed. Dan Carpenter is a strong-legged kicker who has made 15-of-16 FG attempts.
Winner The Saints have handled their special-team responsibilities well this year, as they have not allowed a punt return longer than 17 yards. Garrett Hartley has made 14-of-16 FG attempts, but he is 5-of-7 from 40-to-49 yards and he does not have an attempt of 50 yards or more.

The Winner Is

(credit: Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Winner New Orleans Saints
4 out of 4

The Bills are a feisty team that is playing with a lot of effort, but that won’t be enough unless the Saints don’t take them seriously. New Orleans lost its last game to the Patriots and is coming off a bye week, so look for them to punish the Bills here.
-Steve Silverman, CBS Local Sports contributor


  1. DENVER, CO - NOVEMBER 15:  Quarterback Brock Osweiler #17 of the Denver Broncos looks on from the bench Kansas City Chiefs at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on November 15, 2015 in Denver, Colorado. The Chiefs defeated the Broncos 29-13.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images) Quarterback Philip Rivers #17 of the San Diego Chargers calls a play against the Cincinnati Bengals during a Wild Card Playoff game at Paul Brown Stadium on January 5, 2014 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
    Week 13 Tale Of The Tape: Denver Broncos At San Diego Chargers

    Not only has Brock Osweiler come up with two victories in his first two starts, he stared down Tom Brady and found a way to beat the New England legend in comeback fashion in Week 12.

  2. Ryan Fitzpatrick Eli Manning
    Week 13 Tale Of The Tape: New York Jets At New York Giants

    The Jets earned a much-needed win against the Dolphins in Week 12, and they need to continue that momentum by following up with another sharp effort here.

  3. ARLINGTON, TX - NOVEMBER 02: Carson Palmer #3 of the Arizona Cardinals throws against the Dallas Cowboys in the first quarter at AT&T Stadium on November 2, 2014 in Arlington, Texas. OAKLAND, CA - AUGUST 14:  Case Keenum #17 of the St. Louis Rams looks to pass the ball against the Oakland Raiders at O.co Coliseum on August 14, 2015 in Oakland, California.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
    Week 13 Tale Of The Tape: Arizona Cardinals At St. Louis Rams

    The Cardinals appear to be the best team in the NFC and may be that conference’s representative in the Super Bowl.

See All Tales of the Tape
Giving Tuesday
Charles Osgood Event

Listen Live