News & Analysis

NFL Week 12 PFF ReFocused: Buffalo Bills 27, Los Angeles Chargers 17

Nov 29, 2020; Orchard Park, New York, USA; Buffalo Bills running back Devin Singletary (26) runs with the ball against the Los Angeles Chargers during the fourth quarter at Bills Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Despite losing the turnover battle, the Buffalo Bills remain atop the AFC East after a 27-17 win over the Los Angeles Chargers. Buffalo lost two fumbles and quarterback Josh Allen threw an ill-advised interception, but the Chargers were unable to capitalize despite several second-half opportunities.

While these teams are at opposite ends of the standings, this game was expected to be exciting with two volatile quarterbacks in Allen and Justin Herbert, and that’s just what we got.

Editor's note: All of PFF's grades and advanced stats from this game will be finalized and made available to ELITE subscribers within 24 hours of the final whistle.

Story of the Game

Allen battled injury, but he had one of his worst games of the season, putting the ball on the ground multiple times on the same play to go with his fourth-quarter interception. He did add 32 yards on the ground, including a 3-yard keeper to put the Bills up 24-6 in the third quarter. 

Offensively, Buffalo scored on a trick play when wide receiver Cole Beasley found Gabriel Davis for 20 yards. RB Devin Singletary ran the ball well outside of his fumble, with 82 yards on 11 carries, including a 21-yarder for a score.

This game is another example of the all-around team the Bills have built, as their defense stepped up in a big way. Edge defender Jerry Hughes had a huge day rushing the passer with one of his best games of the season. Fellow defensive lineman Ed Oliver also showed up as a pass-rusher, while EDGE Mario Addison and DI Quinton Jefferson got to the quarterback multiple times on the day. 

Nov 29, 2020; Orchard Park, New York, USA; Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert (10) drops back to pass against the Buffalo Bills during the first quarter at Bills Stadium. Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

For the Chargers, Herbert had multiple risky plays, including a fourth-quarter interception to cornerback Tre’Davious White. Herbert did his best to get the Chargers back into the game, but dropping back 59 times against a tough Bills defense is a tall task. On top of that, the Chargers’ offensive line struggled once again in pass protection. They came into the game with the fifth-worst pass-blocking grade in the league, and that ranking may be getting even worse in this one.

On the positive side for Los Angeles, EDGE Joey Bosa had an outstanding game with three sacks and multiple other pressures. Unfortunately, Bosa was the only consistent pass-rusher among the four Chargers with at least 20 opportunities. 

In the end, the Chargers couldn’t take advantage of a few gifts from the Bills, and Buffalo once again showed that it has one of the best all-around teams in the league. 

Rookie Report

Bills EDGE A.J. Epenesa played 27 snaps, the most he’s seen since Week 6. He had multiple hurries on 14 rushes while doing his best work in the run game with two defensive stops. 

WR Gabriel Davis was on the receiving end of the 20-yard trick play and had the longest play of the day for the Bills, a 44-yard jump ball. He finished with 79 yards on three catches. 

RB Zack Moss had 59 yards on his nine carries while forcing two missed tackles — 52 of those yards came after contact. 

For the Chargers, it wasn’t Herbert’s cleanest outing, but he still had plenty of positives to his game given the circumstances. 

RB Joshua Kelley picked up 35 yards on his seven carries including a 1-yard touchdown. LB Kenneth Murray played all but three snaps on defense.

ELITE subscribers can view player grades, advanced statistics, positional snap counts and more in Premium Stats 2.0.

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