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4 Bills takeaways from dominant Week 12 win over Saints on Thanksgiving

Bills, josh allen, stefon diggs, dawson knox

The Buffalo Bills entered Thanksgiving on a down note. They had just been destroyed by the Indianapolis Colts at home the Sunday prior. That loss had dropped them out of first place in the AFC East behind the rival New England Patriots.

The Bills needed a solid performance, something to help get their confidence back. The got it Thursday, as they destroyed the New Orleans Saints on Thanksgiving, 31-6.

Here are 4 key takeaways from the win for the Bills over the Saints.

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Bills Takeaways from Week 12 Win over Saints

4. Dawson Knox is vital to the Bills success

The Buffalo Bills have been looking for a viable tight end for many years. They might have finally found what they have been looking for in Dawson Knox. Knox is a big guy, 6′ 4”, 254 lbs, but also can get downfield pretty well and has very good hands.

The last time the Bills had a tight end as a legitimate offensive weapon was probably Jay Riemersma. Believe it or not, Ranker actually has Knox as the 3rd best tight end in Buffalo Bills history, behind only Riemersma and Pete Metzelaars. That’s how bad it has been for this franchise at tight end.

Knox has made a big different this season for the Bills offensively, including Thursday night with two touchdowns.

He has scored seven touchdowns on the season already, despite missing almost a month due to a fractured right hand. The Bills have scored between 31 and 45 points in seven of the nine games he has played in. Clearly, when he is in the lineup taking up the middle of the field, it opens the entire offense up.

3. The Buffalo Bills go as Josh Allen goes

Thursday night the Bills listed running back Zach Moss as a healthy scratch. Only a couple of weeks ago, it appeared as though he had passed Devin Singletary on the depth chart. All of a sudden Matt Breida starting getting more playing time, at the expense of Moss.

Breida is a fine scat back who can run to the outside and catch passes out of the backfield. But he is not an every down runner. Singletary has shown he cannot handle a full workload. So, it seems that the offense will live or die on the arm and legs of quarterback Josh Allen.

Without Josh Allen’s 43 rushing yards Thursday, Singletary and Breida ran 24 times for 70 yards. That’s a putrid 2.9 yards per carry. It might have been worse had the Bills not had such a commanding lead for most of the game.

Despite the lack of a running game, Allen took matters into his own hands. He threw for four touchdown passes, completing 23 of 28 pass attempts. I look for the Bills to continue running the offense this way.

2. Stefon Diggs is a Bad Man

Stefon Diggs once again showed how skilled he is at the wide receiver position. He was lined up all game one on one against arguably the best cover cornerback in the NFL, Marshon Lattimore. If you are unfamiliar with how good Lattimore is, ask Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans.

Yet, Diggs continued to do his thing Thursday., catching seven passes for 75 yards and a touchdown. He used his excellent route running to break free from Lattimore on his 5 yard touchdown.

It’s not often you see Lattimore torched like that. In such tight spaces, Diggs was able to create more than enough separation for the touchdown catch. Everyone knows Diggs is an elite receiver, who has great hands. But he is also one of the best route runners in the NFL.

1. The Bills still have a lot to prove

The win on Thanksgiving improved Buffalo’s record to 7-4 on the season. That is tied with the New England Patriots atop the AFC East, pending the Patriots game against Tennessee Sunday.

These two division rivals have yet to play this season. Buffalo will play host in Week 13 before they meet again in Week 16 in Foxborough. Obviously, much of the division will come down to those two games. But on a whole, the Bills have not proven very much.

Their wins have come against the Dolphins twice, the Jets, Washington, Houston, Kansas City and New Orleans. Even the win against the Chiefs is a bit tainted, as that happened in the midst of their season swoon. Yet, they have lost to the Steelers, Titans, Jaguars and Colts.

They have beaten soundly the teams that they should beat. But are yet to prove they can consistently play well against the good teams in the league. They will get their chance next week against Bill Belichick and the hated New England Patriots.