Knox

Tight end Dawson Knox, right, celebrates a touchdown with receiver Stefan Diggs against the Houston Texans

Dawson Knox is becoming quite familiar with the Buffalo Bills' red zone options. 

The Brentwood Academy alum and NFL tight end is in his third season and is experiencing a bit of a breakout campaign, becoming one of quarterback Josh Allen's favorite targets down low this season. 

The Ole Miss product has 5 touchdowns this year so far and 261 receiving yards through five games, and he's just coming off his first 100-yard game with a 117-yard, one touchdown performance against the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday Night Football. 

“[He’s] very athletic, very good mover, catches the football, doesn’t fight it, and really earned the trust of the quarterback,” Titans head coach Mike Vrabel said. “Think you saw that the other night, they threw one up and the defender was pretty close. I think it was a 50-50 ball, but he knew that Dawson was going to come down with it, he high-pointed it, and (Bills QB) Josh (Allen) made a good throw.

Among tight ends, Knox ranks first in the NFL in receiving touchdowns and sixth in total yards (261). His 14.5 yards per catch also ranks second in the league among TEs. 

The Bills chose to stick with Knox over pursuing outside help (they were linked to Eagles TE Zach Ertz in the offseason) and it's paying off for the AFC contenders so far this fall. 

“There’s always going to be a lot of noise coming from the outside talking about trades for certain players or acquiring different free agents,” Knox said via ESPN. “But we've got to focus on us, you know? I've got to focus on myself and I’ve got to get better every day. As soon as I start worrying about what people are saying about the tight end position or the offense, that’s the second you start to slip and lose focus on where you want to be.”

Knox and Allen worked out together in the offseason and have found their best chemistry yet this season.

“Whether it be blocking, whether it be pass catching to running routes, he just finds ways to get open,” Allen told ESPN. “I have supreme trust in this guy right here and he’s only going to continue to get better.”

The two posed for a prom pic to celebrate after a touchdown connection Sept. 26, further showing the camaraderie the two have struck on and off the field. 

“The little things you do right start to add up,” Allen said. “[Knox] does everything right throughout the week and it’s awesome to play with him.”

Bills GM Brandon Beane has noticed his former third-round pick's ascension. 

"At the end of the year, I thought we did a little bit, Dawson started to get his groove, but it was never where the opposing defense was like, 'Man, we've got to stop their tight ends from going off,’” Beane said of Knox going into 2021. 

Being that he is only one of two tight ends on the roster, Knox's rise probably won't stop anytime soon. 

Knox will get a chance to play in front of his hometown crowd this Monday night when the Bills visit the Tennessee Titans. Kickoff is at 7:15 p.m. 

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