Bills vs. Colts: 9 things to watch for during Week 11’s game

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The Buffalo Bills will look to build on some momentum in their Week 11 game. The Bills (6-3) host the Indianapolis Colts (5-5) after routing the New York Jets, 45-17.

Once the game gets going, there will a few particular things to keep in mind throughout it.

With that, here are nine things to watch for during Week 11’s Bills-Colts matchup:

Taylor is rolling

Colts running back Jonathan Taylor (28) Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Through 10 games, Colts running back Taylor is currently tied for the league lead with 937 rushing yards. Of course, he’s even with the Titans’ Derrick Henry who has missed a few game already due to injury.

Nonetheless, Taylor is No. 1 now and is on a roll. A historic one.

Per Colts Wire this week:

Taylor has been on fire during the last seven games. Over that span, he’s recorded at least 100 scrimmage yards and a rushing touchdown in each game. He’s only the fourth running back in NFL history to do so, along with Hall of Famer LaDainian Tomlinson.

Additionally, The Colts’ wins this season are a direct correlation to Taylor. In every win, he has had 100 yards rushing. In every loss, he’s been held under that.

However the Bills plan to keep him under that number, it has to work. It might involve extra linebacker at times instead of their usual nickel scheme.

How the Bills start

Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen. Syndication The Record

In recent weeks, a big topic of discussion for the Bills has been their starts to games. In Weeks 8 and 9, Buffalo preformed poorly in the first half against the Dolphins and Jaguars, respectively.

Last week vs. the Jets a lot went right, including a touchdown in their opening drive. The Bills also came out and scored 17 in the third quarter.

Which Buffalo team comes out of the gate against the Colts? It will likely be a difference maker in the outcome.

A game of turnovers

Jordan Poyer of the Buffalo Bills Syndication The Record

The Bills had five takeaways last week against the Jets. Everyone in the secondary got one and that’ll help the differential.

That turnover differential number has been edging out a couple of teams narrowly in recent weeks before that big total. One of those teams is the Colts.

In Week 11, Buffalo and Indy facing off means the top two teams in terms of turnover differential will battle. The Bills, at plus-14, beat out the second-best Colts at plus-11.

Who takes it away more?

An elite opponent in the trenches

Indianapolis Colts running back Jonathan Taylor (28) and Indianapolis Colts guard Quenton Nelson (56) celebrate (USAT photo)

Whether it’s the offensive or defensive line, the Colts are good on both sides of the trenches.

In front of quarterback Carson Wentz is a unit led by three-year pro and three-time All-Pro Quenton Nelson. As a whole, this unit is getting healthier, too.

On defense, DeForest Buckner moves all around the defensive line from his tackle spot. Rookie Kwity Paye has also started to improve in recent games. He notched his first sack last week, but he still has played well as Pro Football Focus grades him as their 17th best edge defender in the NFL currently.

The Bills have keep up in the dirty areas.

Spread out the passing or no?

Bills wide receiver Stefon Diggs Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The Bills got the outside passing game going against the Jets last week. That was led by Stefon Diggs, who had 162 yards, a season-high. Gabriel Davis also surpassed 100 yards.

But by comparison, the distribution by quarterback Josh Allen didn’t involve the middle of the field much. Wide receiver Cole Beasley and tight end Dawson Knox had a combined three targets in New York.

How does that shake out against Indy?

For what it’s worth: Indianapolis has allowed more passing touchdowns than any other team in football (23).

Does Breida make another impact?

Buffalo Bills running back Matt Breida . (AP Photo/Kamil Krzaczynski)

One could expect that running back Matt Breida could be involved in the offense once again. Both Zack Moss and Devin Singletary outsnapped him against the Jets, but Breida was a spark, scoring twice.

Will the Bills try to mix Breida in again?

Does 2019 Carson show up?

Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz. (AP Photo/John Munson)

Colts quarterback Carson Wentz has faced the Bills once. It was a good day for him. His team won, 31-13, back in 2019 while he was with the Philadelphia Eagles.

Wentz was not spectacular in that outing, but his team outscored Buffalo 20-6 in the second half. That was the difference.

Does Wentz have that type of effort in him again?

How do the Bills handle Spencer Brown situation?

Buffalo Bills offensive tackle Spencer Brown. (AP Photo/Wade Payne)

The Bills will not have Spencer Brown in the lineup on Sunday. The team might not for their next game as well.

The rookie right tackle was placed on the Reserve/ COVID-19 list on Thursday. Depending on his vaccination status, he could miss two games.

Is it Cody Ford’s chance again? Defensive tackle Star Lotulelei also remains on the designation.

Injury concerns at linebacker

Buffalo Bills middle linebacker Tremaine Edmunds . (AP Photo/John Amis)

On Monday, the Bills had declared linebacker Tremaine Edmunds as “day-to-day” with a hamstring issue. He did not practice on Wednesday or Thursday. That’s not a good update.

Also limited at practice has been Matt Milano. Buffalo will hope at least one of these two can suit up vs. the Colts.

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