Niagara Gazette

Sports

September 30, 2013

Bills defense rises in win over Ravens

Bills defense takes charge in 23-20 win over Ravens

Niagara Gazette — ORCHARD PARK — Marcell Dareus and the Buffalo Bills defense made life miserable for Super Bowl MVP Joe Flacco.

Dareus had two sacks, rookie linebacker Kiko Alonso and converted safety Aaron Williams had two interceptions as part of a 23-20 win over the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday.

Dareus was pleased with the new-look defense that finally began playing up to its attacking style under new coordinator Mike Pettine.

“It surprises people, but we controlled it the way we needed to,” Dareus said. “We were not going to let them push us around.”

The Bills pushed back in limiting Baltimore to 15 first downs and 345 yards.

It was a stifling performance that came a week after Buffalo gave up 513 yards in a 27-20 loss to the New York Jets.

And the Bills (2-2) won despite an injury-thinned defensive backfield that opened the game missing three starters, and closed it minus Williams, who couldn’t finish because of a sore back.

“These guys have answered the bell, and they played their behinds off,” defensive tackle Kyle Williams said. “It doesn’t get any better than this.”

Alonso sealed the victory by making a diving catch to pick off Flacco for a fifth time with 57 seconds remaining. Facing third-and-8 at the Bills 48, Flacco forced a pass over the middle intended for tight end Dallas Clark. Clark and safety Da’Norris Searcy both got their hands on the ball, and Alonso came up with the interception.

Fred Jackson had 87 yards rushing, and scored on a 14-yard run for the Bills, who are off to a 2-2 start under rookie head coach Doug Marrone.

C.J. Spiller added 77 yards rushing in helping Buffalo combine for 203 yards on the ground against a defense that had allowed just 224 in its first three games.

The Ravens (2-2) took a big step back after an impressive 30-9 win over Houston last week.

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