Life is good in the (other) Queen City.
It’s a little frigid there this time of year, admittedly. But fans of the Bills won’t mind, particularly given their beloved team’s red-hot start to the campaign.
Buffalo is 10-3 after its opening 13 games, bolstered by the strong play of Josh Allen. And although the Bills’ run game has been effective so far — Sean McDermott’s side is averaging 5.0 yards a carry, fourth-best in the league — its aerial attack has proved vital to the team’s success.
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In Stefon Diggs and Gabe Davis, the Bills have a formidable 1-2 punch atop the depth chart. Diggs is one of the best wideouts in the league, a skilled route-runner with soft hands and a penchant for highlight-reel catches. Davis is mercurial. He hasn’t been involved in every game, but his big games — most notably the three-catch, 171-yard, two-touchdown showing he had in Week 5 vs. the Steelers — are entrancing.
Outside of those two, though, Buffalo hasn’t gotten much production out of the room. It was that factor, among others, that led McDermott and company to bring Cole Beasley back to Buffalo.
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Here’s how the depth chart shakes out with Beasley added to the roster:
Bills WR depth chart
1. Stefon Diggs
The Maryland product has reached the 1,000-yard plateau for the sixth time in as many seasons and looks on pace for the best season of his career.
He is among the best wide receivers in the league. Expect him to continue to rack up the receptions as the season approaches its crescendo.
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2. Gabe Davis
Supplementing Diggs is Davis, who is putting together the best season of his three-year career. The 23-year-old has netted 696 yards in Buffalo’s opening 13 games and could eclipse the 1,000-yard mark for the first time.
It hasn’t been the easiest of seasons for Davis, though. He has been held to under 40 yards in seven of the 12 games in which he has played. Nevertheless, Davis’ big-play ability is useful for Allen and could make an impact going forward.
3. Isaiah McKenzie
McKenzie has lagged behind his more prolific teammates, but has had his moments, including a six-catch, 96-yard showing vs. Detroit in Week 12.
The 27-year old has 20 targets to Davis’ 16 over the past three weeks, so he could be a bigger part of McDermott’s aerial attack going forward. But watch this space, particularly if Beasley establishes himself as a slot option in the coming weeks.
4. Khalil Shakir
The rookie hasn’t seen the field too much. He has nabbed just eight passes for 128 yards. He has shown flashes, namely a three-catch, 75 yard showing against Pittsburgh in Week 5. But he has netted just two targets in the last two games.
5. Cole Beasley
The old man hath returned after a hiatus. At the moment, he is only signed to the practice squad. If he gets up to speed, expect him to be heavily involved in the offense — he averaged 812 yards per year in his three prior seasons at Highmark Stadium.