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Wayne Post
  • Report card: Grades for Buffalo Bills' Week 1 loss to the Patriots

  • See how the Bills performed in the opener.
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  • Quarterbacks: EJ Manuel made a few big throws, including a beautiful touch pass to Stevie Johnson in the back corner of the end zone to put the Bills in front. Not all the throws were great, as the rookie was nearly picked off twice. Buffalo could've used more than 150 passing yards. Grade: B-
    Wide receivers and Tight ends: Stevie Johnson and Robert Woods both hauled in 18-yard touchdowns. Johnson's third-down drop and Marquise Goodwin's fumble both hurt the team. Scott Chandler committed a pair of drive-killing penalties and dropped a pass. Grade: C
    Running backs: C.J. Spiller didn't make the debut he wanted, rushing for just 41 yards on 17 carries and losing a fumble deep in Buffalo territory. The bright spot for the unit was Fred Jackson, who gained 67 yards on 13 carries and was Buffalo's most productive receiver with 41 yards on four receptions. Grade: B
    Offensive line: The offensive line opened up holes for Buffalo's read-option attack all game long and the Bills finished with 136 rushing yards. The unit didn't allow a sack either. Cordy Glenn and Kraig Urbik both committed penalties that stalled drives. Grade: B+
    Defensive line: Kyle Williams turned in a solid performance with six tackles and a sack, while Mario Williams failed to make any big plays, registering just two tackles. The Patriots' offensive line pushed the Bills around up front, paving the way for 158 rushing yards (4.5 yards per carry). Grade: C-
    Linebackers: Kiko Alonso made a strong debut with nine tackles, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery. Manny Lawson performed well against the run, but the rest of the linebackers were quiet. Grade: C
    Secondary: Da'Norris Searcy filled in for Jairus Byrd admirably, finishing with eight tackles, a sack and a fumble recovery for a touchdown. Justin Rogers made a heads-up play to intercept a pass that was bobbled by Zach Sudfeld. The unit got the job done until the final drive, where Danny Amendola and Tom Brady picked them apart. Grade: B-
    Special teams: Shawn Powell punted the ball well, dropping three inside the 20, but the coverage gave up 10.7 yards per return to Julian Edelman. New kicker Dan Carpenter prevented New England from getting good field position with two touchbacks. Buffalo's return game was ugly, with Leodis McKelvin making a poor decision to not field a punt and T.J. Graham mishandling a kick in the end zone. Grade: C-
    Coaching: The offensive and defensive game plans did have Buffalo in front until the very end. Ultimately, penalties and mental mistakes hurt the team and when there are 10 penalties for 75 yards, that's on the coaching staff. The Bills also stuck with their no-huddle offense a bit too long in the second half when they could've burned time off the clock and given their defense a rest. Grade: B-
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    Follow sports reporter Dan Goldman on Twitter at MPN_DanGoldman for more Buffalo Bills coverage.

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