“When you see a broken table in Orchard Park, it can only mean one thing: Bills Mafia is absolutely ready to roll.” – Maria Taylor on the atmosphere at Highmark Stadium
“My coach in Pittsburgh, Chuck Noll, always said champions do the ordinary things better than everybody else, and that’s what I’m seeing with Josh Allen this year.” – Tony Dungy
“Talk about impressive all year long. We’ve been banging this drum…They’ve been the best team, they’re the most complete team.” – Jason Garrett on the 7-0 Eagles
“This is the second-best team in the NFC…they showed their explosive ability on offense today.” – Chris Simms on the Cowboys
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STAMFORD, Conn. – Oct. 30, 2022 – NBC Sports’ presentation of Week 8 of the 2022 NFL season began tonight from Highmark Stadium in Orchard Park, N.Y., with Football Night in America leading into coverage of Josh Allen and the Buffalo Bills facing Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers on Sunday Night Football on NBC, Peacock and Universo.
Football Night in America was hosted by Maria Taylor, who was on site in Buffalo along with Hall of Fame head coach Tony Dungy, fantasy sports industry pioneer Matthew Berry, and co-host Jac Collinsworth. Co-hosting from NBC Sports’ Studio 1 in Stamford, Conn., was Ahmed Fareed, who was joined by former Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett, former NFL quarterback Chris Simms and NFL Insider Mike Florio.
In advance of tonight’s game, Buffalo safety Jordan Poyer spoke with NBC Sports’ Michael Smith and discussed his road trip to the Bills’ Week 6 game in Kansas City after he wasn’t medically cleared to fly due to injury. Click here for a link to the entire interview.
Jac Collinsworth also spoke with WWE superstars Omos and MVP from outside Highmark Stadium.
Mike Tirico (play-by-play), Cris Collinsworth (analyst), Melissa Stark (sideline reporter) and Terry McAulay (rules analyst) are calling tonight’s game. Tirico also reported from the field during FNIA.
Following are highlights from tonight’s edition of Football Night in America on NBC and Peacock:
Taylor on the atmosphere at Highmark Stadium: “When you see a broken table in Orchard Park, it can only mean one thing: Bills Mafia is absolutely ready to roll. And to be honest, there is nothing in the NFL quite like a Bills home game.”
Simms: “I think they’re one of the best teams in football along with the Philadelphia Eagles. We knew they had the best quarterback in the game along with (Patrick) Mahomes, but I think the other thing you look at is their defense is different this year. Last year it was No. 1 in football, but it was really a paper defense. This year, they legitimately have a front four that’s scary, along with a lot of other parts that make them a legit in-reality No. 1 defense.”
Dungy on Allen: “My coach in Pittsburgh, Chuck Noll, always said champions do the ordinary things better than everybody else, and that’s what I’m seeing with Josh Allen this year…We’re seeing (fundamentals)…but of course, when you need an extraordinary play, this guy can do it as well as anybody.”
Garrett on Allen: “To me, he’s Roy Hobbs from The Natural. We talked about Aaron Rodgers making it look easy – this guy makes it look easy. We’ve seen these amazing plays he’s made from year one, but the maturity level is the thing for me. He sees the field, he goes through his progressions, he makes great decisions time and time again.”
Dungy on LB Von Miller: “A leader on the field, a leader off the field, but what he has brought is that, ‘We can get pressure, we don’t have to blitz, we can use our seven coverage guys and mix things up and we’re going to get that quarterback throwing fast because of Von.’”
Bills S Jordan Poyer to Michael Smith on driving from Buffalo to Kansas City to play in Week 6: “I didn’t do it for [anybody] else but those guys. But at the same time, I’ll be able to look back at this and know that I did everything I could to help this team win football games…The trip was smooth, we had a good time, but I’ll never do it again (laughs).”
Bills LB Von Miller to Smith on Poyer’s travel: “The Jordan Poyer that I know, he didn’t want to let his teammates down. Fifteen, 16 hours in a van to go play a football game? That just shows you the type of guy that he is.”
Dungy on the Packers’ offensive struggles: “I think it starts up front. I don’t think (Rodgers) has confidence in his offensive line and has moving parts in and out. Haven’t run the ball as effectively, so that’s put a lot more pressure on the passing game, and they aren’t getting anything down the field.”
Dungy on the Packers’ offense: “When they’ve really been good in Green Bay, they’ve been balanced. They’re not running the ball as much…they’ve got to get back to that running game. They’ve got to make some big plays up the field…I think Aaron Rodgers has to take this ball up the field more. That’s not the Aaron Rodgers we’re used to seeing.”
Garrett on Rodgers: “I’ve never seen a guy playing the quarterback position make it look easier than Aaron Rodgers. The guy is Superman, it’s like recess out there. That’s not what’s happening right now – it looks like a struggle. The challenge for him is take the young offensive linemen, take the young receivers, and reach down and lead them and try to bring them to his level. He’s done that throughout his career.”
Garrett: “Talk about impressive all year long. We’ve been banging this drum…They did it in all phases today…They’ve been the best team, they’re the most complete team.”
Garrett on QB Jalen Hurts: “Nobody throws the deep ball better than this guy. You leave A.J. Brown by himself in press coverage, he’s going to wear you out.”
Simms on the Cowboys: “This is the second-best team in the NFC…they showed their explosive ability on offense today. Dak Prescott on third downs, the ability to push the ball down the field to (Michael) Gallup and CeeDee Lamb, it opened up the run game, big plays for (Tony) Pollard. I thought Dallas looked really good.”
Garrett on the Cowboys’ offense: “I simply loved how (offensive coordinator) Kellen Moore dressed it all up with some motion and some formation…When Dak gets out in space, he sees well, he can deliver strikes. Great balance throughout, and he was orchestrating it all.”
Simms: “They’ve got everything on offense. We know the defense can make plays. Offensively, they got weapons at receiver that are hard to match up with. Then you add in the Tony Pollard thing at running back and it makes them scary – and Dak (Prescott), I think he’ll get better and better as the season goes on here.”
Garrett on LB Micah Parsons: “Micah’s got elite ability, rare skills. What I love most about him is the relentlessness…The spirit that he brought to that defense, it’s incredible. It’s contagious.”
Simms: “I think the 49ers are a team to watch out for. They’re not healthy, (but) I think we would look at them and go they are one of the teams that could challenge maybe the Eagles as one of the better teams in the NFC.”
Simms on RB Christian McCaffrey: “This is why they traded for this guy, he’s dangerous in all facets of the game, he’s a homerun hitter. This is a team we know that likes to run the football and throw to the running back out of the backfield, and we saw the full variety of the (Kyle) Shanahan system using McCaffrey…Watch out. They’re going to have everybody’s heads going in every which direction. They’ll be dangerous.”
Garrett on McCaffrey: “Talk about a guy doing it all. Credit to John Lynch and Kyle Shanahan to go get this guy. Recognized the environment, where we are as a team, we need to get guy like this. They bring him in, they get him in the mix right away. He was the difference in this ballgame today.”
Simms on the Vikings: “They’re good…Minnesota is just on the outside of Philadelphia and Dallas (of the being the best teams in the NFC).”
Simms on the Dolphins’ offense: “They’ve got it all going. They’re creative on that side of the ball, they can run the ball, (Tua Tagovailoa) is wheeling and dealing, and then of course those two receivers (Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle) are scary.”
Simms on the Seahawks and QB Geno Smith: “One of the best stories of the NFL season so far…Nobody would’ve guessed this guy is tearing up the league. Geno Smith, just throwing dimes all over the place.”
Simms on if rookie RB Kenneth Walker III is already among the best running backs in the NFL: “I think he’s in that conversation.”
Garrett on RB Derrick Henry: “Handed to this guy 32 times in the game, and why not? Again and again and again, it’s a great formula for the Titans.”
Simms on the Titans: “It’s amazing what they did today. The defensive line dominated, (Henry) dominated. Me and Jason Garrett could play quarterback for that team!”
Florio on Rams WR Cooper Kupp’s injury suffered in the Rams’ loss to the 49ers: “He suffered an ankle injury and limped off the field with about a minute left and down 17. After the game, coach Sean McVay said he’s not sure of the severity but he’s kicking himself for not running the ball in that spot. Kupp was spotted in the locker room after the game with his ankle wrapped, he was limping. He told reporters that he has to see how the ankle responds in the next few days, but he believes for now he may have dodged a bullet.”
Simms on QB Taylor Heinicke’s game-winning drive: “Unbelievable, just hangs around and then it’s the fourth quarter and it’s Heinicke time.”
Garrett on QB Zach Wilson’s performance in the Jets’ loss to the Patriots: “One of the biggest things for a young quarterback to learn is don’t turn a bad play into a disastrous play…He was too frivolous with the ball, and it came back to bite him. That was the difference – New England taking the ball away and poor decisions by Zach.”
Simms on Wilson: “It wasn’t a good day. They were on a four-game win streak because they’ve been smart, playing team football, defense, let’s run it, let’s take care of the ball and not throw risky passes down the football field. This looked like rookie Zach Wilson.”
Garrett on Cardinals WR DeAndre Hopkins’ impact on the offense: “What a difference (DeAndre) Hopkins made coming back. Twelve catches today, he was all over the place. Ignited that Cardinals offense.”
ON UPCOMING NFL TRADE DEADLINE
Florio on the Cowboys: “There are plenty of names out there at the receiver position, but the Cowboys won’t likely want to give up a lot to get one. Here’s a name to watch: Cedrick Wilson. Plays for the Dolphins, used to play for the Cowboys. Not playing much in Miami, maybe could be coming back to Dallas.”
Florio on the Broncos and Saints: “Bradley Chubb…there’s been a lot of talk about him being traded, but the Broncos won today and that could end the trade speculation. Same thing for Alvin Kamara, the Saints running back. Chatter about him being traded, Saints win, they’re very much alive in the NFC South. I spoke with Cam Jordan, the Saints’ pass rusher, after the game and he said that he said to Alvin Kamara, ‘Are you worried about being traded?’ And he said, ‘Whatever happens, I’m bleeding black and gold.’”
Peacock Sunday Night Football Final, an NFL post-game show produced by NBC Sports, streams exclusively on Peacock following every Sunday Night Football game during the 2022 season. The show is hosted by NBC Sports commentators Kathryn Tappen and Chris Simms, who provide instant reactions to each Sunday game along with highlights and interviews. Football Night in America co-host Jac Collinsworth and analyst Rodney Harrison also provide recaps and insights into the day’s biggest moments from the site of each week’s SNF game. NFL Insider Mike Florio provides injury and news updates. Matthew Berry provides fantasy football analysis and an early look at the fantasy waiver wire.
— Football Night in America —