Originally written on Buffalo Wins  |  Last updated 11/18/14
The Bills started their final drive (I’m ignoring the final play of the game) with a one point lead in the fourth quarter and 5:51 to go at their own twenty yard line.The defense just stopped the Patriots and the reality that the Bills might actually win the game, as an 11.5 point underdog, was setting in. They just needed to finish the game well. Before the drive started, the Bills absolutely needed to score on this drive. You dont have to check NFL odds here to know how important the possession was. Even if they scored just a field goal, the Patriots would be forced to score a touchdown to steal the game. A one point lead is tenuous, especially against a quarterback of Tom Brady’s caliber. Getting his team into field goal territory was almost a given. Unfortunately for everyone at Ralph Wilson Stadium, the Bills went three and out while running their no huddle offense. The drive, three plays and a punt, took just 1:20 off the clock and the Patriots got the ball with 4:31 to go at their own 34 yard line. A lot of the post game commentary Sunday and into Monday focused on the decision to keep running the no huddle offense as opposed to trying to run the clock down. Let’s see if that’s really something to be upset about. Since 2000, a team with more than 4:30 and less than 5:00 left in a half (excluding drives that ended in kneel downs) scored 21.2% of the time. When trailing by eight or fewer points (down by one score) teams score on 19.9% of the time. That’s our baseline to compare to the alternative game state: less time remaining on the clock. Had the Bills milked the clock, they could have used a maximum of forty seconds between each play and each play might have lasted about fifteen seconds each at most (closer to five seconds, but 15 gives naysayers nothing to argue about). Based on 55 seconds per play, but still going three and out, the Bills would have punted the ball to the Patriots with 2:11 left. When teams have less than 2:30 but more than 2:00 left in a half and are down by a score or less (eight points), they score 19.3% of the time. By wasting time the Bills would have only reduced New England’s chance of scoring by 0.6%. Burning the clock wouldn’t have saved the game for the Bills. Getting a first down, and eventually scoring, would have. How do the Bills get a first down and eventually score? By running what they view to be their most efficient offense: the no huddle. Let’s also not forget the really good drive the Patriots put together that led to the game winning field goal. Amendola and Vereen were really good for New England. The Bills almost won, but they didn’t lose because of the no huddle.
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Corey Brewer: We got our butt kicked, it was embarrassing

Brian Kelly hints Notre Dame will have fast offense

John Madden: Last play of Super Bowl will 'torment' Pete Carroll

Cristiano Ronaldo nets hat trick, sets career high for goals

WATCH: Cormier tells Jones to get his s-- together


Fans holding 'Free Tom Brady Rally' at Gillette Stadium

Josh Hamilton to be activated by Rangers

WATCH: Top CB recruit makes insane catch doing backflip

Biggest surprises of the MLB season

Marcus Mariota leads NFL in jersey sales for May

Report: Scott Skiles frontrunner for Magic coaching job

Billy Donovan thanks Florida fans with full-page ad

WATCH: Daniel Cormier gets into it with Ryan Bader

Jim Harbaugh compares his driving to Jeff Gordon's

WATCH: High school seals win with perfect hidden ball trick

Warriors crush Rockets in Houston to take 3-0 series lead

WATCH: D'Angelo Russell whiffs on horrible golf swing

Brian Matusz ejected for having foreign substance on arm

PHOTO: Don Cherry wears wild suit even for his taste

PHOTOS: Gigantic sinkhole at Jack Nicklaus golf course

WATCH: Memphis player catches defense sleeping, scores

WATCH: Astros turn around-the-horn triple play

French Open Women's preview: Who will make the quarters?

All Sports News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Kelly drops hint about ND offense

John Madden: Last SB play will 'torment' Carroll

Eight biggest surprises of the MLB season

Bryan Price ejected before first pitch

Vin Scully narrates marriage proposal

Pats fan's obituary defends Brady

Marlins players skip own charity event

John Wall tells All-NBA Team voters to ‘keep sleeping’

Jim Kelly: No doubt Tom Brady cheated

Post-combine NBA Draft big board: Top 30

Ex-players sue NFL for conspiring to push painkillers

Astros surprising, but can get better with Correa

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.