Buffalo Bills vs. Las Vegas Raiders 2020 NFL Live Stream: Preview, odds, predictions for Week 4. The Buffalo Bills travel west this week to play the Las Vegas Raiders on Sunday with a chance to capture the franchise’s first 4-0 season start since 2008.
Everything has gone right for the Bills offense through three games. The passing game is among the NFL’s best led by third-year quarterback Josh Allen. The Bills rank no. 2 in passing and have the no. 3-ranked scoring offense in the league. Allen’s been playing at an MVP level, posting eye-popping passing numbers (1,038 yards, 10 touchdowns, 1 interception) through 12 quarters.
Raiders coach Jon Gruden has been impressed this week while watching film on Allen and the Bills offense.
“This guy is something else. It starts right there,” Gruden said. “Allen is a problem for everybody. He can make the throws that you can dream about. He’s powerful, he’s got a rocket, he’s hard to tackle, he’s smart – he’s everything you’re looking for at the quarterback position. They’ve surrounded him with an arsenal of good players and speed.”
Allen was named the AFC’s Offensive Player of the Month for his efforts in September and his playmakers are healthy. Receiver John Brown missed practice on Wednesday and was limited on Thursday with a calf injury, but practiced in full Friday and looks ready to go. Buffalo will get back tight end Dawson Knox, who missed last week’s 35-32 win against the Los Angeles Rams while still in the league’s concussion protocol.
The biggest storyline of this game may be how banged up the Raiders are on both sides of the ball. Las Vegas will be without starting receivers Henry Ruggs (doubtful) and Bryan Edwards, meaning veterans Nelson Agholor and Zay Jones will start in their place. Bills fans are familiar with former Buffalo second round pick Jones, who was traded to the Raiders last season. Gruden said the team has confidence in Agholor and Jones should have fun going against former team.
The Bills defense struggled last week, allowing 29 unanswered points in the second half while Rams quarterback Jared Goff was able to pick the secondary apart to get L.A. back into a game that they were clearly being outplayed in.
Bills safety Micah Hyde said he’s been on teams before that go into halftime and can’t seem to find it in the second half. But in this year’s case with the Bills defense, which is allowing an uncharacteristic 25.7 points per game (16th in NFL) and 380.7 yards per game (21st in the NFL), Hyde thinks it’s more about working through the early struggles after no preseason games.
Raiders quarterback Derek Carr will be facing a healthier Bills defense this week. Linebacker Tremaine Edmunds played through a shoulder injury last week and remained in a red non contact jersey in practice this week on Wednesday and Thursday. He was out of it on Friday.
Carr has thrown for 784 yards, six touchdowns and no interceptions in his first three games, but the strength of the Raiders offense is in their run game. Josh Jacobs is one of the best young backs in the league and Hyde called the 22-year-old “a beast.”
“He’s a young guy who gets it done all over the place. He runs hard and it takes multiple guys to take him down. The kid is awesome; he’s amazing,” Hyde said. “It’s going to take everybody, all 11 guys on defense to take him down. And then with last game, improving our run fits. Everybody staying in their gap, tackling. I think each and every game you can improve on something, and that’s a big note from us the last game to improve on tackling and gang tackling and getting guys to the ground.”
The Rams were able to run the ball consistently against the Bills last week as Darrell Henderson rushed 20 times for 114 yards and a touchdown. The New England Patriots limited Jacobs’ impact last week, holding him to 71 yards on 16 carries. If the Bills can stop the run and force Carr to air it out, the Bills defense should be able to improve on last week’s game. The Raiders might be without two starters on the offensive line, too. Left guard Richie Incognito is on injured reserve with an achilles injury, while right tackle Trent Brown is doubtful with a calf injury.
When the Bills have the ball Devin Singletary should be considered a weapon Buffalo can use to exploit the Raiders defense. Last week Patriots back Sony Michel went over 100 yards and New England was just more physical than the Raiders. The passing game should continue to find success for the Bills, but Singletary could be find some room to work.
When it comes to stopping Allen, Raiders linebacker Cory Littleton said Vegas has their work cut out for them,
“He’s a mobile quarterback that can extend plays and he’s a tough dude,” he said. “He honestly puts the game in his hands sometimes and he’s a quarterback that won’t give up easily. He’s always going to do whatever he can for his team and we just have to stop that.”
Easier said than done, especially considering Stefon Diggs has a nice matchup against second-year cornerback Trayvon Mullen. The 23-year-old called Diggs a top 5 receiver and said he thinks he’s ready for the challenge.
Bills defensive tackle Ed Oliver missed practice on Thursday but was a full participant on Friday and should play. Defensive end Mario Addison and running back Zack Moss are both listed as questionable.
Buffalo activated cornerback Josh Norman off injured reserve yesterday at the 4 p.m. deadline. He could make his season debut today against the Raiders.
BILLS vs RAIDERS
Kickoff: 4:25 p.m. (ET) on Sunday at Allegiant Stadium
TV: CBS (Ch. 4 in Buffalo, Ch. 8 in Rochester, Ch. 5 in Syracuse)
RADIO: WGR 550 AM (Buffalo), WROC 950 AM (Rochester), 106.5 FM (Syracuse)
Line: Bills by 3.5 (Over/under at 52.5)
While I think the Bills win this one comfortably, I think they could run into some trouble against a fast, hard-hitting Raiders defense. The problem Vegas will face is that they don’t have enough players in the secondary to account for all of the Bills weapons. Damon Arnette likely won’t play today, which means Mullen will be asked to do a lot. Look for Diggs to have another big game and the Bills defensive line to make things tough on Derek Carr.
Bills 25, Raiders
The Raiders got off to a promising start early this season, but they are dealing with a lot of injuries heading into their game against Buffalo. It could be the perfect opportunity for the defense to get right while the offense continues to put up their fair share of points. Bills get a commanding lead and don’t let up. – Ryan Talbot