“Playoffs? Playoffs? (Said vociferously like the Jim Mora classic). Let us get past the fact that the Bills would need to be perfect, lucky and healthy. – have the opponents be mistake happy, unlucky, unhealthy and full of flaws in execution of a game plan. Now if the magic wand of a year ago just happened to line up, they still would need many many things to happen outside of the games they are involved in to possibly sneak in to a playoff spot.
This time we watched the Bills lose to the Miami Dolphins, then eventually to the New York Jets. So, what was written above about the glimpse of playoff hope faded away with the Bills loss. When the Bills faced off against the Jets this past Sunday, they lost a heartbreaker in the final minutes which led to another start of the Bills playoff drought as they have been eliminated from the playoffs.
On the bright side, I mentioned when we were at this resort earlier this year watching the Super Bowl, the Buffalo Sabres at that time were still the ongoing laughing stock of the NHL. Months later in the same calendar year the Sabres have a winning record and at one point dominated the league with a ten-game winning streak holding first place in he NHL. So, turnarounds can transpire expeditiously in sports with free agency and draft capital.
With the loss to Miami a positive take on the season could be the continued hope that the team will have a franchise quarterback. Josh Allen showed some good things prior to his injury and has looked as if the time he was healing, he was growing and learning the NFL game and really absorbing everything about being a professional in general.
The rookie quarterback, in his seventh start, continued to show improvement with two touchdown passes to wide receiver Zay Jones and a Buffalo-best 135 rushing yards for a QB. He also came within a dropped pass by former Dolphin, tight end Charles Clay, of pulling out a win over Miami. The Bills fell short of sweeping the Jets on the season and fell to 4-9 on the season, leaving them out of the postseason for the first time since last season.
Well I will watch a second Bills game in a two-week period from Montego Bay, in a couple of days. I have no acumen to believe that the team will give anything less than a 100% total effort under coach McDermott. Tanking is not in the vocabulary and as much as the high pick could benefit the team, losing on purpose with the all-star level defense assembled and the offense growing in the likes of Zay Jones and Josh Allen would be counterproductive as developing confidence and experience is at the utmost importance. Allen’s instinct for getting out of bounds and when to slide has been improving weekly which inspires.
The cutting of the underachiever and under inspiring Kelvin Benjamin will absolutely not impact Allen’s development as his effort was short and his results were poor. Dropping balls does not develop a rookie quarterback. He will continue to throw to faster young receivers who would give anything to improve their chances of being on the starting roster next season. The Kelvin Benjamin experiment was a huge failure and it it safe to finally say…is over. He has talent. He may move on to Kansas City or other places and his talent that got him to the NFL drafted high may resurface and kick his career back in to gear. As a Bill though it was injuries, uninspiring efforts, dropped balls and failure to run good crisp routes and rarely being open.
Things We Know About the Buffalo Bills This Week:
- Offensive guard John Miller made his return and his presence was well missed through his time gone from the team.
- There were five quarterbacks chosen in the first round of April’s draft, and all five of them started in the NFL. Sam Darnold and Allen faced off against each other. Darnold came out as the winner, but it can be argued that Allen was the more productive quarterback. It was the costly turnovers that helped secure the Jets victory over the Bills.
- The Bills face off against the Lions this Sunday with the weather projected to be very chilly. Allen takes on Matt Stafford who has similar arm strength just like Allen. How Allen will react against a flashy secondary will determine his true accuracy when he is not able to use his legs.
- The Bills miss the playoffs for the first time under McDermott and Brandon Beane. Let’s not forget, this should be a fun offseason for all Bills fans. Around $90 million in cap space and multiple draft picks. The offseason will be a fun time for all Bills fans.