Bills Head Coach Sean McDermott (Post-Game Transcript)

Opening statement:

“I thought our guys played hard. We had some opportunities to win it, but they had more plays than we did. With that, I’ll turn it over to you for questions.”


On the decision to kick in overtime:

“Yeah, there was – if we had gotten to fourth-and-two or fourth-and-three possibly, we had talked about that. Going for it. Going for the win for sure.”


On kneeling at the end of regulation:

“I thought about it. I thought about going for it, but just with their pass rushers and 20 seconds, I just wanted to make sure – really, I was trying to end the game a couple of plays before using the timeout on third down. I think it was the plus-41 [yard line], trying to make sure we had the right defense there and making a tough field goal, which it was. Emptied out the next one to try and answer the rain, make the kicker think about it a little bit and then he made a 59-yard field goal. Great play by him, and then we’re left with one right there. So, we went to overtime and had a chance to win it and didn’t.”


On possibly keeping one timeout:

“Yeah, hindsight is always 20-20. Believe me, it’s gone through my mind more than once. So, when you get the result you’ve got, you’re always looking back and saying, ‘Hey, maybe if we kept one of those.’”


On the change in the defense in the second half:

“Yeah, in the second half, they hit a couple of runs. You know, they went to the run game more back there and hit a couple of runs, and then it became the two dimensional-type of game again with their running game, the RPOs, and then [Eagles QB Jalen] Hurts made a number of plays with his feet, more so in the second half than he did in the first half. I thought we were rushing well in the first half and playing good [run] coverage, and they have their tackle down as well in the game, and so I felt like our defense was getting after it a little bit there. In the second half, he got out a few times and made some trouble with his feet.”


On his evaluation of the officiating:

“No, I’m not going there. I appreciate the question.”


On the redzone defense:

“I thought our third-down defense was good, but our redzone wasn’t good enough. We tried to hit a zero blitz there at the end just to maybe pop the quarterback run. [Eagles QB Jalen Hurts] was making plays with his feet, so you tend to add to the rushing lanes, and he popped it.”


On the offense under interim Bills Offensive Coordinator Joe Brady:

“I thought we moved the ball well – 500 yards. I think that says a lot about the direction we are headed on offense. I do think we had some opportunities to come up with more, just as an overall team that’s the general sentiment coming out of the game. Whether it’s special teams opportunities there, opportunities offensively, and opportunities defensively. Those are the ones you want back, the players want some of them back, I want some of them back, the coaches do as well. Against a good football team, we came in here and played well. We just have to continue to work on finding plays. Finding plays down the stretch and, obviously, [today] not enough.”


On whether he feels like the Bills defense let down the offense tonight:

“Well, that’s where I look first. I look at myself first. I look at the defense right after that. In the second half we didn’t do enough to win the game. And so, we come out and we didn’t shut them down in the second half like we did in the first half. But, again, I think it’s a team game. You have opportunities across the board on offense, defense, and special teams. That’s where I start with myself and the defense.”


On what the explanation was for the intentional grounding call in the second quarter:

“They said that [Bills WR] Gabe [Davis] was not in the area. You know, from the information I got, Gabe was in the area.”


On what he saw in Bills WR Gabe Davis tonight:

“Yeah, I felt like he made some big-time catches for us. I thought quite a few of the guys did. [Bills QB] Josh [Allen] threw the ball around a little bit there. I mean that’s a good pass-rushing defense.”


On what happened on the throw in the end zone to Bills WR Gabe Davis in overtime:

“It was a little bit of a miscommunication there. Had him open. That’s where I’m saying, that’s one right there, where an opportunity to win the game and put it away and they made the plays that needed to be made and we didn’t. We’ll go back and learn from this and move forward.”


On the assessment of Bills K Tyler Bass:

“I think T. Bass has done some really good things. You know, we have a lot of confidence in T. Bass. Obviously, he made some kicks tonight. I think he wants two of those back, I’m sure. Those are some of the opportunities I was referring to of the overall team. So, it never comes down to one person or one play.”


On the number of penalties being on the road:

“We will look at them. The one I saw on the replay, our hands were outside the framework on one of the holds that got called, so I’m not going to get into how many we had, whether the calls were there or not. At the end of the day, you have to take the officials out of it. That’s what you’ve got to do if you’re going to play.”


On whether he has seen over the last few weeks Bills QB Josh Allen playing at an MVP level:

“Yeah, for sure. His level of play has risen over the last two weeks. That is really the biggest thing. When your quarterback is playing well, you have a chance. The inconsistency leading up to the last three weeks were one of the reasons why I made the decision that I did to move forward here. The last two weeks, Josh Allen’s level of play has been good enough for us to win.”


On what he can take into the bye with the message to his team:

“There are no moral victories. I am encouraged by the direction of our offense the last two weeks. I think holistically as a team, I will assess where we are at. I am going to do some self-scout this week and get ourselves ready for the Kansas City Chiefs.”


On keeping the team up after feeling like they received a gut punch:

“Stand up. This is the league we are in. We came in here, fought our [tails] off. We didn’t make enough [plays]. We didn’t do enough or make enough plays and do enough on the coaching end. At the end of the day, there is a tough group of guys in that locker room. A tough group of coaches. We are a good football team and just came out on the short end here. There are no moral victories. Each and every one of us has to look at ourselves. Like I told you, that starts with me. That is what you do. That is what the best do and I know our football team is a darn good football team.”