Early-season Josh Allen was on full display for the entire country on Monday night. The Bills' signal caller threw for 375 yards and four touchdowns while completing 80% of his passes in a 34-24 win over the San Francisco 49ers.
"We were clicking. It just seemed like the guys were getting open," Allen said. "I'm not gonna say it was our best game, but it was definitely fun to go out there and get win number nine."
Allen's four touchdown passes tied a career high; his passer rating was also a season high (139.1). But he was quick to give credit to the rest of the offense as well.
"Our main goal is to not let each other down," Allen said. "So when you have a group of guys that can do that, it doesn't matter how fast or how slow you start, you always feel like you've got a step in the game."
"The good thing is that coming into the game, we said we needed to give Josh time to get the ball where it needed to go," left tackle Dion Dawkins said. "And that's what we did."
Allen connected with eight different receivers against San Francisco. Spreading the wealth to that extent has become the norm for Buffalo's passing attack this season. The Bills nearly doubled the passing total that the 49ers allowed on average going into Monday's game.
"Josh put us in some great positions to change the protections. He had a few times where he had some great pocket movements to help us out," center Mitch Morse said. "I thought Josh did a great job moving around."
"He was doing a great job as always extending plays with his legs," wide receiver Cole Beasley said. "Whenever you have a quarterback that can do that, it gives you an opportunity for big plays."
The neutral site in Arizona moved tonight's game further from Allen's hometown of Firebaugh, California. Monday's game was the first time he played against the team he grew up rooting for.
"I wish that there wasn't the whole COVID crisis going on. There would've been a huge showing from my hometown and my friends," Allen said. "But I know that they were watching."
And so was the entire country as the Bills knocked off the defending NFC champs . After a quiet middle stretch of the season, Allen is back to putting up borderline MVP-type numbers. But what he means to the team goes beyond the stat sheet.
"Josh is our leader, and he continues to show out in prime times," Dawkins said. "He just does what he does."
"As I grow in my NFL career, just being in different situations, and trying to learn and take everythin you can, when you don't start fast, you have to calm down," Allen said. "Every game's a situation you can learn from and apply to the next."
The lessons learned from Monday's win over San Francisco will be applied to an even better defense next week. Buffalo hosts the 11-1 Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday night.