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AFC East Report week 6: Bills lose game, starting quarterback Josh Allen to injury

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Notes from around the division.

Buffalo Bills v Houston Texans Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images

The New England Patriots’ prime time thriller against the Kansas City Chiefs was the final AFC East game played in week six – and like two of the three that happened before, it was a successful one for the division. While New England stays on top, the rest of the teams are not too far behind. With one notable exception that lost not just a game on Sunday but a quarterback in the process. Let’s take a look at it in this week’s AFC East Report.

1. New England Patriots (4-2)

Week 6: 43-40 win against the Kansas City Chiefs, in Foxboro MA

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To watch highlights of the game, click here.

2. Miami Dolphins (4-2)

Week 6: 31-28 OT win against the Chicago Bears, in Miami Gardens FL

After back to back defeats made the Miami Dolphins lose the AFC East lead, the team bounced back against the visiting Chicago Bears on Sunday – despite starting quarterback Ryan Tannehill being out with a shoulder injury. His replacement, however, played a well enough game. Together with some opportunistic defense, this allowed the home team to come away with a 31-28 victory.

The game started slowly, with Miami getting on the board first: the team’s second possession ended with a 5-yard touchdown pass from Brock Osweiler (28/44, 380 yds, 3 TDs, 2 INTs) to tight end Nick O’Leary (4/49 yds, 1 TD). The score was the lone offensive highlight for the Dolphins in half one – the rest of quarters one and two was dominated by the team’s defense.

Late in the first quarter, the unit stopped Chicago on fourth down near midfield. Late in the second it forced and recovered a Bears fumble at the Miami two-yard line. But while the Dolphins could not turn the takeaways into points – in part because of an Osweiler interception – it did allow the team to take a 7-0 lead into the locker rooms at halftime. However, the lead did not hold long as Chicago scored two consecutive touchdowns to open the third quarter. The latter of which was preceded by Osweiler’s second interception.

At that point, the game turned into a shootout. Miami answered with a field goal before the Bears added another touchdown to go up 21-10. The Dolphins then added three more points to their total before the team’s defense made another big play by picking off Chicago quarterback Mitchell Trubisky (22/31, 316 yds, 3 TDs, 1 INT) inside the Miami end zone. This time, the home team took advantage and tied the game on an Osweiler touchdown pass to Albert Wilson (6/155 yds, 2 TDs).

The Bears answered with a touchdown of their own but Osweiler’s second scoring pass to Wilson – a 75-yarder – tied the game once again with three minutes left to go. With neither team being able to score again before the conclusion of the fourth quarter, the contest was headed to overtime. Miami found itself in a position to score a game-deciding touchdown on its first possession but Kenyan Drake (13/57 yds) lost a fumble near the Chicago goal line.

The visitors were then able to drive into the range for what would have been a deciding field goal, but missed the 53-yard attempt wide right. Subsequently, the Dolphins moved to the Bears 29 and with three seconds left had rookie kicker Jason Sanders (3/3 FG, 2/2 XP) deliver the game-winning 47-yard attempt.

To watch highlights of the game, click here.

3. New York Jets (3-3)

Week 6: 42-34 win against the Indianapolis Colts, in East Rutherford NJ

The New York Jets are back at .500 after a shootout victory over the visiting Indianapolis Colts. Todd Bowles’ team started very well into the meeting: on the second play from scrimmage, cornerback Morris Claiborne (4 TKLs, 1 INT) picked off a tipped pass from Andrew Luck (23/43, 301 yds, 4 TDs, 3 INTs) and returned it for a touchdown. The lead did not hold long, however, as Indianapolis tied the game on the very next possession.

The back-and-forth continued throughout the game. New York answered the Colts’ score with a field goal drive before two straight Jets giveaways – an interception from Sam Darnold (24/30, 280 yds, 2 TDs, 1 INT) and a fumble by Quincy Enunwa (1/9 yds) – allowed the visitors to take a 13-10 lead. Following a Jets fumble recovery by Jordan Jenkins (1 TKL, 1 FR), the home team was able to re-gain the lead on a pass from Darnold to Terrelle Pryor (5/57 yds, 1 TD).

After New York’s third takeaway of the first half – an interception by linebacker Avery Williamson (5 TKLs, 1 INT) –, the team was able to add two more field goals to its lead and enter the locker rooms at halftime up 23-13. The first series after intermission saw the Jets increase their lead to 17 points when Darnold found fellow rookie Chris Herndon (2/56 yds, 1 TD) from 32 yards out.

Following another Colts touchdown on the next drive, the Jason Myers (7/7 FG, 3/3 XP) show started. New York’s kicker made four field goals over a 15-minute span to solidify the Jets’ lead even when the Colts were able to score two touchdowns in the fourth quarter. In between, the team’s defense registered two more big stops: linebacker Darron Lee had an interception before the unit stopped Indianapolis on a fourth down pass.

And while not all was perfect from the Jets’ perspective, the team played solid complementary football and made big plays at critical points – something that the 2017 Jets often failed to do.

To watch highlights of the game, click here.

4. Buffalo Bills (2-4)

Week 6: 20-13 loss against the Houston Texans, in Houston TX

The Buffalo Bills’ up-and-down season continued on Sunday against the Houston Texans. In a defensive battle, the team failed to string enough plays together to come away victoriously and move back to .500. Instead, the team lost its fourth game of the season and – to make matters worse – first-round rookie quarterback Josh Allen (10/17, 84 yds) late in the third quarter. Allen could reportedly miss up to three games because of the elbow injury he suffered.

Buffalo started the game with the football in its hands but despite quickly driving to the Houston side of the field had to punt. The Texans were also forced to kick away following their first drive, but remained in possession when Bills wideout Ray-Ray McCloud (1/2 yds) muffed the catch. The home team was able to take advantage of the second chance and went up 7-0.

Buffalo failed to respond and instead turned the football over on another special teams blunder in the early second quarter. Following the blocked punt, the Texans further increased their lead by a field goal. Meanwhile, the Bills offense continued to be ineffective as well which is why the squad headed into the half down 10-0. The third period, however, started better for Sean McDermott’s team.

Following an interception by Lorenzo Alexander (4 TKLs, 1.5 SCKs, 1 INT), kicker Stephen Hauschka (2/2 FG, 1/1 XP) put the Bills on the board. The defensive back-and-forth continued with Hauschka’s second field goal late in the third quarter which brought the team within four points. After another takeaway – a fumble recovery by Harrison Phillips (1 TKL, 1 FR) – Buffalo actually scored a touchdown to go up 13-10 on a touchdown pass from Nathan Peterman (6/12, 61 yds, 1 TD, 2 INTs) to Zay Jones (3/35 yds, 1 TD).

However, the lead did not hold. First, the Texans tied the game on a field goal with 1:37 left in the fourth quarter. Two plays later, Peterman threw a pick-six that gave Houston a 20-13 advantage. Buffalo failed to respond this time and a second interception thrown by the backup passer effectively sealed the game.

To watch highlights of the game, click here.