Reaction to Tate play shows character of this Bills team

October 30, 2017

It has been a remarkable start to the 2017 season for the Buffalo Bills. The team currently sits at 5-2 in the standings after a big 34-14 win over the Oakland Raiders on Sunday at New Era Field.

Sunday's win was highlighted by Buffalo's four takeaways, along with a big day on the ground from LeSean McCoy. Yet, one play in the game stands out as a point for the Bills in which they pushed the gas pedal down and never looked back.

At the 6:40 mark of the third quarter and after a holding penalty forced a 2nd and 20 from the Buffalo 28-yard line, Bills quarterback Tyrod Taylor made a great spin play in the pocket to buy some more time and find an open receiver. He ends up finding wide receiver Brandon Tate for a 12-yard gain in the middle of the field, but Tate extends the play for another 10-yards to gain a huge first down.

Following the play, the Bills' sideline erupted as coaches and players both mobbed Tate, showing their appreciation for the big play.

"We were flowing, we were in the moment of the game, and other things," head coach Sean McDermott said of his team's reaction at his press conference this afternoon. "You don’t see that everyday around the NFL. You don’t see that everyday around professional sports. I go to my son’s game on the weekend, and you see some of that which is so authentic and pure and just raw. Just guys loving to play the game, that's what’s right about sports, professional sports. There’s still heart, there’s still soul, there’s still spirit involved in it. I love that part."

Nine plays after the big catch and run play from Tate, Taylor punched the football in from one-yard out to put the Bills up 27-7.

Tate's third quarter play was more than just a big play for the team on their way to another victory, but it went to show the character and the unity of this football team. Here are some reactions from One Bills Drive on the Tate play following practice Monday: 

Rick Dennison: "Everybody was into the game. Certainty that’s our profession, but they’re emotionally connected to the game. It was a great individual play by Brandon. Tyrod did a great job of buying some time, the line did a good job of keeping them off of him. He made an individual effort and everybody appreciated it. I think the momentum really swung, we really felt like everybody was a part of the team, and it was good for us to see."

Jordan Matthews: "It was so unique. Almost like you don’t even realize it because we have a lot of energy in practice. At the end of every practice, we do [what's> called a development period and we’ll have the guys from the scout team offense go against the scout team defense for one play. Usually whoever makes the play to win that period, we’re all going crazy whether the offense wins or the defense. You don’t see a lot of guys, starters, get that excited for a guy who’s on the scout team, but we do. So even just for that to happen, it kind of went over my head because that’s what I’m kind of used to with these guys. Nothing really surprises me with the type of camaraderie that we have... It just kind of shows how different of a team we are."

Jordan Poyer: "That says everything it needs to say about this football team. It’s a group of brothers that go out there every Sunday and play for each other. It’s really one thing that I haven’t been around since I’ve been in the NFL. We call ourselves a group of no-name guys going out there and kind of competing every day. Coming into work and just playing for each other. You can’t ask more from a group of guys like the ones we have in this locker room."

Jerel Worthy: "It was exciting. Brandon Tate’s known for making good plays and big plays. He’s been doing that for a while in this league. But it’s exciting to see a guy pull out a Madden move in the middle of a play, and be able to scramble for the first down. It was a crucial situation for us because we got a penalty before. He was able to pick us back up and it was exciting for us. At the end of the day, this is a family. We’re trying to build something special, trying to build something that everybody feels a part of. Coach McDermott has the right message for us, and we’re just trying to deliver it on Sundays."

On the practice field, Jordan Poyer was listed as limited with his knee injury after missing Sunday's game against Oakland. Also listed as limited on the practice field was Ramon Humber, who has been out of the lineup after suffering a thumb injury against the Atlanta Falcons.

Here is the complete injury report:

Monday injury report:

— Buffalo Bills PR (@BuffaloBillsPR) October 30, 2017

The Bills will return to practice on Tuesday to continue preparations for the New York Jets on Thursday night at Metlife Stadium.