The narrative surrounding the Buffalo Bills in 2019 is that they are “playoff pretenders”. Although they stand at 9-3, the Bills have only beaten two teams over .500. To be fair to Buffalo, they have only played three teams with a winning record. Buffalo has already proven to be good team, taking care of games that they should win. Now after showing up a poorly coached Cowboys team on national tv, the Bills are getting a lot of attention just as their schedule gets intense.
New American Team
Josh Allen tore up the Cowboys’ defense on the air and the ground, a feat that becomes less and less impressive as the weeks roll by. Although Dallas is not what they should be, Allen and the offense maintaining their groove on a short week in a big game is huge. The Bills’ offensive success was led by Cole Beasley’s first 100+ yard receiving game in Buffalo against his former team. Surprisingly, despite Beasley spending the first seven years of his career in Dallas, the Cowboys had no idea how to cover him.
Ed Finally Putting Things Together
The Bills drafted defensive tackle Ed Oliver with the ninth overall pick in last April’s draft. To say the very least, his play thus far has been uninspiring. Oliver has not been bad as a Bill but we have not seen the “dangerous pass rusher” we were promised when drafting him. Luckily Jordan Phillips has filled the void in the sack game left by Oliver and now Oliver is finally putting the pieces together. Oliver led the defense through a great game, finishing with two sacks and a forced fumble, making things hard for Dak Prescott.
Although the Bills and Cowboys seem to be on different paths this season, one similarity stuck out, two struggling kickers. Both teams have great kickers in Stephen Hauschka and Brett Maher but both are going through terrible slumps that could end up costing them their jobs. Haushchka has struggled from long distance for over a month, missing a field goal and extra point on Thanksgiving. Maher didn’t do great himself, also missing kicks.
Buffalo’s final four games is among the hardest in the league, playing the Baltimore Ravens (10-2), Pittsburgh Steelers (7-5), New England Patriots (10-2), and New York Jets (4-8). Luckily Buffalo only needs a win or two to secure a playoff berth, but being so close to New England in the standings, they will be going for the division. Two of Buffalo’s remaining four games will be primetime games as the league has been quick to put the much improved Bills in the spotlight.
The Bills take on the Ravens at home on Sunday in Buffalo in what has already been labeled as the top-rated 1:00 game on national television. Buffalo’s defense will have a hard time containing MVP candidate Lamar Jackson both in the air and on the ground. If the defense can take the run game away, they have a great chance of winning if Josh Allen can perform well on offense.
So You’re Saying There’s a Chance
It is not very big, but Buffalo has a chance to secure their first division title since the 90’s. Buffalo will have to win their remaining four games as well as have a Patriots’ loss to the Chiefs (and obviously a loss to Buffalo) to secure the division. There is little room for error but with the way Buffalo is playing it certainly feels feasible. If Buffalo wins out, Buffalo would hold the number one seed in the AFC, meaning the AFC would run through Buffalo this year. It does not seem likely but we Billieve.