Bills drop preseason opener to Vikings

Sean McDermott's first game as head coach ends with a loss

August 10, 2017 - 7:27 pm

The Buffalo Bills opened up the 2017 preseason with a 17-10 loss to the Minnesota Vikings at New Era Field in Orchard Park, New York.

While the Bills looked ready to come out and play right off the bat, the team ended up struggling at times, and you could see the growing pains of a team still in transition.

Here is a recap of how things unfolded on Thursday night:

First Quarter:

  • 0-0 - Bills undrafted rookie defensive end Eddie Yarbrough made the most of his opportunity right away. He sacks Sam Bradford on 3rd and 7 to end the Vikings' first drive. Yarbrough started at defensive end for the injured Shaq Lawson.
  • 0-0 - Tyrod Taylor and Sammy Watkins got going right away on the Bills' first offensive drive. The first three plays were all catches by Watkins for a quick 30-yards. A holding penalty and a sack stalled the drive right after. On the sack, Taylor stayed down for a second holding his knee/ However, he got right back up and played the next two drives.
  • 0-0 - Sean McDermott pulled his starters on defense after two drives. The Vikings' first-team offense stayed on the field and played one drive against the Bills' second-team defense. Even with the advantage, Bradford and the Vikings went three-and-out. 
  • 0-0 - Bills running back Jonathan Williams looked great in the 1st quarter, hitting open holes with speed. Williams averaged just under 10-yards a carry, and finished his day with 39-yards rushing on four carries. 

Second Quarter:

  • 3-0 Bills - After a failed conversion on a 3rd and 1, The Bills settled for a 42-yard field goal from Stephen Hauschka
    • Drive info: 7 plays, 37 yards, 2:46
  • 3-0 Bills - The Vikings' second team offense, led by Case Keenum, was unable to move the ball on their first two drives.  
  • 3-0 Bills - T.J. Yates did not impress in his first drive, nearly throwing an interception and air mailing a pass to the sideline. 
  • 3-3 - Finally, Minnesota was able to get some traction on offense. They drive down the field and settle for a 36-yard field goal from Kai Forbath with 3:26 remaining in the half.
    • Drive info: 11 plays, 60 yards, 5:47

Third Quarter:

  • 3-3 - Vikings running back Bishop Sankey leaves the game with a non-contact knee injury. A scary sight for the Vikings.
  • 10-3 Vikings - After a big completion to the Bills' 2-yard line on 3rd down, Vikings running back C.J. Ham ran the next play into the endzone for the first touchdown of the season. The extra-point attempt was good.
    • Drive info: 7 plays, 69 yards, 3:26
  • 10-3 Vikings - Reggie Ragland made his first big play in the 3rd, shooting through the line to stop a Vikings run for a loss of 4 yards. 
  • 17-3 Vikings - Minnesota gets into the endzone again with Taylor Heinicke capping off the drive with a 2-yard touchdown pass to Rodney Adams. The extra-point attempt was successful.
    •  Drive info: 14 plays, 71 yards, 7:28
  • 17-3 Vikings - Nathan Peterman comes in to replace Yates with just 1:03 to go in the 3rd quarter.

Fourth Quarter:

  • 17-10 Vikings - The Bills get a couple of nice catches by Logan Thomas and Walt Powell get themselves in scoring position early in the fourth quarter. The Bills found the endzone for the first time with a Peterman fade pass to Dez Lewis for the 1-yard touchdown.
    • Drive info: 13 plays, 79 yards, 6:01
  • 17-10 Vikings - Right after the score, Bills defensive back Joe Powell made a nice interception to get the ball back in scoring position. 
  • 17-10 Vikings - After the pick, Sean McDermott decided to go for it on 4th and 10. Peterman escaped pressure and threw it to a wide open Taiwan Jones, who dropped the ball. 
  • 17-10 Vikings - The Bills had a chance to tie the game in the final minutes. Nate Peterman converted a 4th down to Daikeil Shorts to keep the game alive, but a bad snap on another 4th down play ended the game on the next set of downs. 




Buffalo Bills:

Nathan Peterman: 13 of 25, 112 yards, 1 TD

T.J. Yates: 6 of 11, 48 yards

Tyrod Taylor: 5 of 8, 46 yds

Minnesota Vikings:

Case Keenum: 11 of 16, 121 yards

Sam Bradford: 5 of 7, 35 yards

Taylor Heinicke: 3 of 8, 20 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT



Buffalo Bills:

Jonathan Williams: 4 carries, 39 yards

Mike Tolbert: 4 carries, 27 yards

Nathan Peterman: 4 carries, 26 yards

Joe Banyard: 5 carries, 17 yards

Cedric O'Neal: 3 carries 7 yards

Jordan Johnson: 2 carry, 5 yards

Taiwan Jones: 1 carry 4 yards

Tyrod Taylor: 1 carry, 2 yards

Minnesota Vikings:

Terrell Newby: 12 carries, 26 yards

Bishop Sankey: 4 carries, 14 yards

Rodney Adams: 1 carry, 14 yards

Taylor Heinicke: 1 carry, 14 yards

Dalvin Cook: 5 carries, 13 yards

Case Keenum: 1 carry, 7 yards

C.J. Ham: 3 carries, 5 yards, 1 TD



Buffalo Bills:

Sammy Watkins: 4 catches, 39 yards

Daikiel Shorts: 4 catches, 37 yards

Philly Brown: 3 catches, 23 yards

Dez Lewis: 4 catches, 22 yards, 1 TD

Logan Thomas: 2 catches, 22 yards

Brandon Reilly: 1 catch, 18 yards

Nick O'Leary: 1 catch, 16 yards

Joe Banyard: 2 catch, 9 yards

Jason Croom: 1 catch, 9 yards

Jonathan Williams: 1 catch, 7 yards

Walter Powell: 1 catch, 4 yards

Minnesota Vikings:

Stacy Coley: 3 catches, 67 yards

Dalvin Cook: 4 catches, 30 yards

Michael Floyd: 2 catches, 20 yards

Bishop Sankey: 4 catches, 15 yards

Rdoney Adams: 2 catches, 12 yards, 1 TD

C.J. Ham: 1 catch, 11 yards

Jarius Wright: 1 catch, 9 yards

Terrell Newby: 1 catch, 7 yards

Stefon Diggs: 1 catch, 5 yards



Buffalo Bills:

Eddie Yarbrough: 1 sack

Jerry Hughes: 1 sack

Marquavius Lewis: 1 sack

Joe Powell: 1 INT

Reggie Ragland: 6 tackles

Minnesota Vikings:

Everson Griffen: 1 sack

Tashawn Bower: 1 sack

Jaleel Johnson: 1 sack


Total Yards:

Bills: 309

Vikings: 242


Rushing Yards:

Bills: 127

Vikings: 90


Passing Yards:

Bills: 182

Vikings: 152



Bills: 10 for 106 yards

Vikings: 3 for 36 yards


Time of Possession:

Bills: 27:04

Vikings: 32:56

Comments ()