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Head Coach Sean McDermott and the Buffalo Bills flew down to Charlotte, North Carolina to take on the Carolina Panthers, McDermott’s former team. The Bills came up short by losing 9-3 in a crushing loss on the road. They are now 1-1 and face the Denver Broncos at home next week.

Here are my five takeaways from the game:

Can We Talk About That Bills Defense?

After two weeks, the Bills’ total defense is second in the NFL. The spectacular defense was  able to contain Cam Newton’s offense by sacking him six times, not allowing him to score any touchdowns, and limiting the Panthers offense to only 255 yards. They have come a long way from Rex Ryan’s defense from the past two years.

Can We Talk About That Bills Offense?

Despite a stalwart defensive stand by the defense, the Bills’ offense was not helpful as they could not get a passing game nor a rushing attack going. The Panthers defense limited LeSean McCoy to a putrid 9 rushing yards, a critical blow to a run-heavy offense. The Bills offense could only muster 107 passing yards and 50 of those yards occurred in the last drive made by the Bills before the clock expired.

Defensive Shining Star

Bills Safety Jordan Poyer is off to a hot start with his new team. In his first two games, he has two sacks, 5 passes defended, 1 interception, and 14 tackles. I honestly didn’t know what to expect out of the former Cleveland Brown after the Bills signed him to a four year $14 million contract. He has been exceptional and certainly has been a pleasant surprise as a brand new addition to the team.

It’s Gonna Be Okay, Zay

Rookie Wide Receiver Zay Jones unfortunately got a taste of what it feels like to miss a critical catch in a fourth and eleven situation. People are going to blame Zay but his quarterback, Tyrod Taylor, should be held accountable for making a bad throw that was hard for the youngster to catch. Bills Hall of Famer Andre Reed and former Wide Receiver Stevie Johnson took to Twitter to provide reassuring words that it happens. It was a tremendous effort. You need to hand it to him.

Future Looks Bright

According to Pro Football Focus, rookie cornerback Tre’Davious White is the highest rated rookie cornerback in the NFL through two weeks. Rookie defensive end Shaq Lawson had a nice sack that certainly rattled Cam Newton. Will he be the second coming of Bruce Smith? It’s way too soon to make those comparisons just yet, but with these two rookies, the future of the Bills defense looks promising.

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