Cole Beasley had his best game as a Buffalo Bill — and it came against his former team.
Beasley had 110 receiving yards and a touchdown to help the Bills beat the Dallas Cowboys 26-15 in an afternoon game on Thanksgiving.
Josh Allen connected with Beasley for the Bills' first touchdown of the game. A trick play gave the Bills the lead late in the first half. Allen handed the ball off to Andre Roberts, who pitched it to John Brown. Brown threw it to a wide open Devin Singletary for a 28-yard touchdown.
Steven Hauschka, who missed an extra point and a field goal attempt, made two field goals in the second half. Allen ran for a touchdown to pad the Bills' lead.
The Bills' defense played exceptionally well against the Cowboys, which entered the game No. 1 in total offense. The Bills sacked Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott four times, forced two turnovers and contained explosive running back Ezekiel Elliott. Elliott had a 30-yard run early in the game, but was held to 41 rushing yards on his 11 other carries.
With the Turkey Day win, the Bills are 9-3 this season. The Cowboys fall to 6-6.
Here is the Buffalo Bills Week 13 report card:
Josh Allen is getting a lot of love from the national NFL press after his performance against the Cowboys. He had 231 passing yards and a touchdown and added 43 rushing yards and a score. The fourth-down conversion on a quarterback sneak has been and will be replayed many times in the days and weeks to come. Allen fumbled the snap, but scooped up the ball and lunged forward for the first down. He took on defenders attempting to stuff his run, but he powered his way to a first down. This was a statement game by Allen. He's a rising star in the NFL.
The Cowboys had some success limiting the Bills' rushing attack. Frank Gore, who is third on the NFL's all-time rushing list, was held to 11 yards on nine carries. Devin Singletary had more success, with 63 rushing yards on 14 carries. But 26 of those yards came on one play. For the most part, Singletary was held in check. Singletary did help in the passing game with his 28-yard touchdown catch on the trick play. He finished with three catches for 38 yards. Gore chipped in with a 14-yard reception.
Wide receivers/tight ends
It was a big day for Cole Beasley. After seven seasons with the Cowboys, Beasley burned his former team. He led the Bills with six catches for 110 yards and a touchdown. He caught a 25-yard touchdown pass for the Bills' first score of the game. He made other plays throughout the game, including a reception on a great throw by Allen from the Bills' end zone. John Brown had three catches for 26 yards, but showed off his arm on the touchdown pass to Singletary. Isaiah McKenzie added three catches for 34 yards.
The Bills' offensive line is getting better as the season progresses, but there were some hiccups against the Cowboys. Josh Allen was sacked four times, but the line pass blocked pretty well for most of the game. The run blocking was average. The Bills had trouble getting the running game going. Overall, though, it was a solid performance by the offensive line. It's certainly not bad when you consider they were operating on short rest going up against a good Cowboys defense.
The Bills' defensive front gave the Cowboys plenty of headaches. The Bills sacked Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott four times. Rookie Ed Oliver accounted for two of those sacks, including a strip sack that resulted in a fumble recovery by defensive end Trent Murphy. Oliver is getting better, too, as the season progresses. Murphy had a sack of his own later in the game. Shaq Lawson, who had two sacks in his last outing, split a sack with Jordan Phillips. Lawson had 2.5 tackles for a loss against the Cowboys. Phillips now has 7.5 sacks this season. Another player to highlight: Star Lotuleiei, who intercepted a screen pass and partially blocked a field goal attempt.
Another good game for the linebacking corps. Tremaine Edmunds continues to be a tackling machine with eight tackles (seven solo). Matt Milano was impactful against the run and pass, with four tackles (four solo) and two passes defensed. That 1-2 punch at linebacker for the Bills is tough for opposing offenses. They can stop the run and defend against the pass. Not much will get by either player.
It was an OK day for the secondary. The stat line is a bit misleading because Prescott was able to pad his stats in the fourth quarter. But the Bills' defense did a great job against the Cowboys' offense all day. Tre'Davious White, who shut down Courtland Sutton four days ago, didn't have the same success against Amari Cooper. Cooper had eight catches for 85 yards in the loss. Taron Johnson did a good job as the Bills' slot corner and was one of the team's top tacklers with eight stops (six solo). The Micah Hyde-Jordan Poyer combo had good games against the Cowboys. Hyde was the Bills' leading tackler with 10 tackles (six solo).
Kicking and punting
Kicking isn't easy, but Steven Hauschka's misses this season have to concern the Bills. Hauschka missed a 50-yard field goal — a kick he made with regularity in his first two years with the team. He also missed an extra point. However, he did make up for it with two successful point-after tries and he booted two field goals in the second half.
Punter Corey Bojorquez had a good game. He punted three times, averaged 42 yards per kick and pinned the Cowboys inside the 20 twice.
Kick coverage and returns
Andre Roberts had limited opportunities to return kicks, but finished with two returns for 54 yards. His longest was a 32-yard kick return. He didn't have any punt returns against the Cowboys.
The Bills' kick coverage unit had a quiet day. The Cowboys didn't return a single kick or punt.
A few questionable decisions aside, a great game plan by offensive coordinator Brian Daboll to put Josh Allen and the Bills' offense in a position to win. The trick play was beautifully designed. There were some similarities to the Philly Special used in the Super Bowl. Daboll has been much better over the last few weeks.
The Cowboys scored twice: An early touchdown and a late touchdown. They were shut down for most of the game. Prescott did throw for 332 yards and the defense gave up some longer plays. But overall it was a good game plan against the Cowboys.
Offensive player of the game 🏈
Josh Allen. Allen threw for 231 yards and ran for another 43. He had two total touchdowns (one passing, one rushing) in the Bills' win over the Cowboys.
Defensive player of the game 🏈
Ed Oliver. Oliver is getting more comfortable in the NFL. It showed on Thanksgiving. The Bills' 2019 first-round pick had two sacks and a forced fumble. He didn't make life easy for the Cowboys' offensive line.
110. Cole Beasley's total receiving yards against his former team. He nearly set a single-game career high and it was his first 100-yard game since Week 6 of the 2018 season.
15. With a second consecutive four-sack game, the Bills have 15 in three games. Ed Oliver had a pair of sacks against the Cowboys. Shaq Lawson and Jordan Phillips teamed up on a sack. Trent Murphy added a sack.
28. John Brown threw a 28-yard touchdown pass to Devin Singletary. He is the first Bills non-quarterback to throw a touchdown since Fred Jackson in 2009.
The Bills (9-3) will play at 1 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 8, against the Baltimore Ravens. The game will be televised on CBS.
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