Sunday, September 15, 2013

WEEK 2: Buffalo Bills 24, Carolina Panthers 23

Oh wow.

EJ Manuel makes sportswriters across the country rewrite their recaps as he leads the charge for the go-ahead touchdown with 2 seconds left to beat the Carolina Panthers 24-23.

It was a electric comeback that the Buffalo Bills had been missing all season last year, and unexpected how the Bills had been playing leading to the final drive, which elapsed only 96 seconds.

Stevie Johnson was the recipient of the touchdown pass.

Redemption: The come-from-behind touchdown for EJ Manuel was much-needed redemption, having fumbled the ball on a sack and thrown a pick, both in their own territory and setting up two Carolina 4th quarter field goals.

EJ Manuel threw 27-for-39, passing for 296 yards.  His last-second touchdown was his lone of the game.

Defense Discipline: The Buffalo Bills were flagged 7 times for 55 yards. Two of those flags resulted in Carolina first downs in situations where the Panthers would have otherwise been forced to punt.  In fact, the Panthers were punting to the Bills on one of those two flags when a holding call that came before the punt resulted in the automatic first down.  The other flag was the result of a late hit from Aaron Williams, coming on an incomplete pass on third down.

Good Things: Mario Williams had 4 1/2 sacks for the Buffalo Bills, a career high for him.  The most he had sacked before was in 2007, when he picked up 3 1/2 sacks against the Denver Broncos.

Third Down Efficiency: The Carolina Panthers converted seven of their sixteen third downs.  This is an improvement over last week, when the Patriots converted eleven of their twenty.

NEXT UP: The Buffalo Bills travel away from Ralph Wilson Stadium for the first time this year as they head to East Rutherford, New Jersey to face the New York Jets.  The Jets are 1-1 after losing to the Patriots 13-10 on Thursday Night Football.  Although the Jets may have more rest, the Bills may still be riding high after the finish today.  COVERAGE: 2:00PM Pregame (on 1410 CBS Sports Radio); 4:25PM Kickoff.

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