NEW ORLEANS — Josh Allen passed for 260 yards and four touchdowns, Buffalo’s defense stifled New Orleans’ short-handed offense and the Bills rolled to a 31-6 victory Thursday night that sent the injury-ravaged Saints to their fourth straight loss.
Tight end Dawson Knox caught two TD passes, giving him a franchise-best seven TDs in a single season by a tight end. His second score gave the Bills (7-4) a 24-0 lead.
Stefon Diggs caught seven passes for 74 yards and a touchdown, and running back Matt Breida turned a short pass into a 23-yard score.
The Saints (5-6), playing without dynamic running back Alvin Kamara for a third straight game, were shut out for three quarters. They finally scored on Trevor Siemian’s 11-yard pass to tight end Nick Vannett on the first play of the fourth.
Buffalo outgained New Orleans 361-190 and the Bills possessed the ball for 34:38 to the Saints’ 25:01.
The game illustrated how limited the Saints’ offense has become, in part because of injuries to Kamara and star receiver Michael Thomas, who has not played all season, and due to significant changes at quarterback.
New Orleans went 5-2 in games started by QB Jameis Winston, who took over this season for the retired Drew Brees. But Winston went out for the season with a knee injury during New Orleans’ most recent victory on Oct. 31 and the Saints have lost every game that Siemian has started.
Siemian was 17-of-29 passing for 163 yards, one TD and one interception. Taysom Hill, who is coming off a foot injury, was active as New Orleans’ backup but did not play.
Incidentally, Brees was working the game as a broadcaster and the raucous reception he received from the crowd when he was honored on the field at halftime contrasted sharply from the collective groans of frustration when one New Orleans drive after another stalled.
Most fans had filed out of the dome by early in the fourth quarter, leaving a solid traveling contingent of fans wearing Buffalo blue to close out Thanksgiving on a celebratory note.