'We ride with Josh': Bills teammates gush about QB after playoff loss

Josh Allen on his desire to get ready for the 2020 season: "I am anxious to get back practicing again. I wish we were doing that today, but it is what it is." Tim Warner/Getty Images

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- In part, Sunday morning was a typical day-after-game for Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen and the rest of his teammates: get to the facility, receive treatment for whatever ailments were suffered the day prior and prepare to move forward in one way or another.

But that's where Sunday differed from most days-after-games: It will take a little longer to move forward than usual.

Less than 24 hours after the Bills' 22-19 loss to the Houston Texans on Saturday in the AFC wild-card round, Allen and his teammates won't have the opportunity to move on quickly. In fact, they won't until they take the field again in September.

"I won't be over this until we start playing again," Allen said. "Again, I'm very self-driven, and I understand things could've went differently. I'm going to learn from it, I'm going to use it, and I'm going to grow from it. This will be a chip on my shoulder until we start playing again."

Allen was mercurial in his first career playoff start -- electric during the game's opening drive, on which he contributed a 42-yard run and a 16-yard touchdown catch, and erratic throughout the 10 ensuing touchdown-less drives. His fumble in the fourth quarter was uncharacteristic, but he did lead Buffalo's game-tying drive in the game's final seconds.

Like Allen, his teammates will feel the sting from Saturday's season-ending loss until they're given the opportunity to redeem themselves. They're also confident that Allen will get the job done when that time comes.

"Josh is a stud. He knows that. We know that," Bills safety Micah Hyde said. "We ride with Josh ... that boy's a football player, and we love him. He's a playmaker. You see him out there taking shots. That boy just keeps fighting and found a way to get us to overtime."

Until the start of organized team activities in May, Allen said he will return to California to train with quarterback coach Jordan Palmer, as well as fellow signal-callers Sam Darnold and Kyle Allen.

He improved in nearly every passing category in 2019. Next he'd like to clean up his game so the Bills can make another run in 2020.

"I'm just trying to shore some things up there," Allen said. "Watching more film -- more so on myself than anybody else -- and just finding out what went good and what went bad and try to give me a real honest self-assessment and talk with our coaches before we leave here and try to develop a plan of what I need to work on in their eyes, too.

"The months tend to fly by, and I am anxious to get back practicing again. I wish we were doing that today, but it is what it is."

His teammates are confident in Allen's ability to continue his upward trend in his third season.

"Josh is a second-year guy. He's going to play for 15 more years," Bills defensive tackle Jordan Phillips said. "He's going to prove himself over and over again. He's a helluva quarterback, a helluva leader. I'd go out there and play for him any day."