The starters played into the second quarter but were only able to score 3 points, while giving up a touchdown.
Overall it was a mixed night for the offense. EJ Manuel had a much better outing than last week, going 9 for 13, 96 yards. No TDs or INTs. He was decisive, which was a concern for him this week at practice.
One huge issue for the Bills coming in to this season was short yard and 3rd down situations. Clearly, they need more work in this area as Fred Jackson was stuffed twice on 3rd and short and 4th an inches inside the Carolina 3 yard line. They offensive line has to win these battles for the Bills to be successful this year.
The good news, aside from EJ, was that the team showed they can move the ball. They just need to finish.
Mike Williams showed off his leaping ability with a 34 yard catch. Sammy Watkins played well too, 3 catches for 21 yards
CJ Spiller ran with purpose tonight, 3 carries for 22 yards. He did have a long runr taken back by a holding call on Lee Smith.
The Bills starting defense played well, creating a lot of pressure and generally not giving the Panthers much. However, they did allow a TD early in the quarter on a great catch by Kelvin Benjamin, who tripped on the play but managed to make the catch from Derek Anderson. That gave the Panthers a 6-3 lead. They missed the extra point: remember extra points are 33 yarders for not only last week, but this and next week’s games around the NFL as an experiment.
The second teamers game in with Thad Lewis at QB. Their 1st drive ended after Dan Carpenter missed his first FG of the preseason, a 45 yard field goal off the upright that would have tied the game.
The Bills second team defense forces a turnover on a strip sack on the next series. Landon Cohen made the strip and Manny Lawson recovered. Bryce Brown then lead the way with 2 carries for 25 yards. Then Anthony “Boobie” Dixon powered in for a 1 yard Touchdown. That put the Bills up 10-6.
The Bills defense got an interception from Da'norris Searcy late in the 1st half. That lead to a 42 yard FG by Dan Carpenter, putting the Bills up 13-6 at the end of the 1st half.