Bills fire offensive coordinator Ken Dorsey after sloppy loss to Broncos

Buffalo Bills offensive coordinator Ken Dorsey on the field before the start of an NFL football game against the Washington Commanders, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2023, in Landover, Md. (Andrew Harnik/AP)

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) — The Buffalo Bills fired offensive coordinator Ken Dorsey on Tuesday with the Josh Allen-led attack stagnating over a six-week stretch and the three-time defending AFC East champions falling further out of the playoff picture.

The move came a day after a 24-22 loss to the Denver Broncos in an outing where Allen committed three of Buffalo’s four turnovers and the offense was held under 26 points for a sixth straight game to match the longest stretch since the quarterback’s rookie season in 2018.

Second-year quarterbacks coach Joe Brady takes over as interim coordinator. He joined the Bills after spending the previous two seasons as Carolina’s offensive coordinator.

Buffalo (5-5) has lost four of six and prepares to host the New York Jets (4-5) on Sunday.

Dorsey was unable to complete his second season on the job after being Allen’s hand-picked successor to take over after Brian Daboll was hired to coach the New York Giants. Daboll spent four seasons in Buffalo, with his hiring coinciding with the Bills trading up five spots to select the raw and erratic but strong-armed Allen with the seventh pick in the 2018 draft.

Under Daboll, Allen set numerous single-season franchise records for passing and scoring.

Coach Sean McDermott ran out of patience with the offense’s struggles and its inability to pick up the slack for an injury-depleted defense that’s down three starters because of long-term injuries and was missing two more in the loss to Denver.

After spending the past month reiterating his confidence in Dorsey, McDermott altered his message following the loss by saying: “I’m confident, but I believe we can be better at the same time.”

The drop-off in Buffalo’s offensive production has been dramatic since the Bills outscored their opponents by a combined 139-55 to open the season 3-1.

In the past six outings, Buffalo has been outscored 129-123. It particularly has struggled in the first half, managing just 42 points.

Turnovers have become an issue, with Allen throwing a league-high 11 interceptions, including at least one in a career-worst stretch of six straight outings. His career record dropped to 33-25 when committing a turnover, and 3-5 this season.

Allen backed Dorsey a month ago when the coordinator first began generating criticism, and he initially blamed himself for the struggles. He said he began reeling in his emotions after Week 2 by adopting a “low-positive” approach, while acknowledging he might have gone too far.

A few weeks later, Allen’s support for Dorsey began to fade. He said the Bills were simply following the game plan following a 24-18 loss to Cincinnati on Nov. 5.

Allen has struggled to develop a rapport with receivers outside of Stefon Diggs and rookie tight end Dalton Kincaid. The lack of production this season mirrors the struggles the Bills’ offense experienced at the close of last season.

This marks Buffalo’s second change at coordinator this year. McDermott took over the defensive play-calling duties after announcing in February that coordinator Leslie Frazier was taking the year off from coaching with at least one year left on his contract.

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