Mark Schlereth crushes Bills coaching staff for special teams blunder

Mark Schlereth pointed out what the Buffalo Bills should have done to avoid playoff embarrassment.

If the Buffalo Bills had just listened to Mark Schlereth, they would be hosting the Cincinnati Bengals in the AFC Championship Game instead of watching it from the couch at home.

Josh Allen connecting with Gabriel Davis for six points for the fourth time in the divisional-round affair should have sealed the Kansas City Chiefs‘ fate. But horrendous defense and even worse special teams execution has Bills Mafia still reeling after one of the most heartbreaking losses in NFL postseason history.

“You don’t kick that ball off into the end zone. The thing you do there, they call it, everybody has a different term for this, a mortar kick,” said Schlereth to Mark Carman of FanSided. “So you kick it down between the 10 and 3-yard line and you make the opponent return the kick. That takes off five seconds off the clock. Even if they get a long one, it takes off eight seconds and you stop them around the 50, you’ve got one play left.”

“The fact is you don’t squib it there. You don’t pooch it where somebody can fair catch it where no time comes off the clock or squib it and they give themselves up and no time comes off the clock. You have to kick that thing down to about the 3, 4, 5-yard line and make them return that, stop them, use of five seconds. You’re giving up whatever yardage you’re giving up to take time off the clock. It was a colossal coaching mistake by Sean McDermott and his staff.”

While offensive coordinator Brian Daboll should not have any issues getting a head-coaching opportunity after this game, the same thing cannot be said for defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier getting his long-awaited second stab at a main job.

Mark Schlereth rips Buffalo Bills coaching staff for awful late-game execution

Hindsight is always 20/20, but everybody watching the unforgettable game unfold at Arrowhead Stadium that 13 seconds was way too much time for Patrick Mahomes to march down the field. No, it was not Allen’s fault for leaving time on the clock after throwing another should-be game-winning touchdown. The Bills panicked and paid the price for it dearly by blowing this ball game.

Kicking the ball into the end zone was a terrible idea. Schlereth’s suggestion of going with “a mortar kick” would have done enough to prevent Harrison Butker from having enough time to hit a game-tying field goal. If the Chiefs’ return team hit surprising pay dirt on the Bills, then so be it. The right call was to knock even a few precious seconds off the clock to secure the road victory.

Then again, this is the same Bills franchise that suffered a massive playoff drought after losing to the 1999 Tennessee Titans in what is now known as the Music City Miracle.