So that didn't go well.
Playing for their playoff lives, if not also Rex Ryan's job, the Bills got outclassed in just about every way imaginable. How bad a day was it? They even made a mess of trying to clear snow from the field at halftime, making mounds of rubber pellets around the boundaries and delaying the start of the third quarter.
About 45 minutes before kickoff reports started circulating that Rex could be be fired as soon as Monday. An organizational spilt over Tyrod Taylor continuing as quarterback, even for the duration of this season let alone next year, is cited as the reason. That seems entirely believable from here. After the game, Rex predictably downplayed any reports of unrest. Notably, Rex replied "we'll see" when asked if Taylor would continue to play this season.
If the Bills players were aware of any of this they sure didn't play like a team trying to save their coaches job. Rather, they looked like a team ready to start the offseason, turn the page from this coach, and start on yet another new era / feel the power / Bills run deep / blah blah blah blah.
Confusion, late substitutions, an offsides penalty on a field goal try that gave Pittsburgh a first down. Any number of examples of attention to detail being in short supply could be observed during a game that felt more like a march toward upheaval than anything else.
Taylor was horrendous. His early fourth quarter interception, one play after Zach Brown made a touchdown saving pick for the Bills, could have been grabbed by Sean Davis if Artie Burns hadn't grabbed it. That is how late Taylor was in delivering that pass. Likely playing for his job, Taylor was what he has been all too often this season. Late, indecisive, skittish and mostly just flat out not good enough.
So maybe we get an interim coach and a three game look at whether or not Cardale Jones has any potential worth tapping into. It really would be something if a difference of opinion over who should play quarterback ends up doing Rex Ryan in. That's because for all of Taylor's failings, the offense over these two seasons has been mostly better than many expected. The colossal disappointment has been Rex's defense. Le'Veon Bell had a very college running back looking stat line on Sunday. 38 carries for 236 yards and 3 touchdowns. Bell caught 4 passes for 62 more yards.
Run over is what happened to Rex's defense. If players had any reason to think they needed a strong performance to potentially save the coach, well that wasn't exactly inspired play. Regardless of even that, the Bills playoff lives were on the line in a home game and they got plowed under. Hardly a ringing endorsement of Rex Ryan's ability to tap into his team in a must win spot.
Here. We. Go.