Even with being in second place in the AFC East, two games behind the New England Patriots, the thought of the Buffalo Bills taking a shot to get at the top of the division is unlikely. After an ugly defeat to the Cleveland Browns yesterday, the Bills sit at 6-3 on the season, still in good position to obtain a wild card spot.
If the Bills had won against the Browns, they would have taken a lead in the AFC wild card slot and would have been two games ahead for the fifth playoff spot. With the Browns pulling off a comeback, they sent the Bills to 6-3 and only having a one game lead in the first wild card spot.
Down the stretch, the Bills need to win the close games in the fourth quarter and need to compete from the first whistle to the final one. The Bills cannot control other teams’ wins and losses but it was significantly help them if certain teams started to decline in the month of November. With the AFC being a weaker conference, the Bills have the opportunity to secure a spot in the playoffs but they cannot lose the heartbreaker games otherwise they will pay the price.
Here are the teams that the Bills have to keep an eye on for a race to the AFC wild card spots:
- Pittsburgh Steelers (5-4)
- Oakland Raiders (5-4)
- Indianapolis Colts (5-4)
- Tennessee Titans (5-5)
- Jacksonville Jaguars (4-5)
- Los Angeles Chargers (4-5)
The Steelers, Raiders, Colts and the Titans are one game behind the Bills. The Steelers currently are in place to secure the sixth spot after their impressive victory over the Los Angeles Rams. Both Buffalo and Pittsburgh will face each other in Week 15 so that will be a crucial game for the Bills. The Raiders and the Colts do not face the Bills in the regular season this season, and the Titans lost to Buffalo this year, giving the Bills the head-to-head record.
The Jaguars and the Chargers are two teams in the lower section of the hunt but they can surprise the NFL each week. With Nick Foles coming back for the Jaguars, who knows if this offense takes a step forward or backwards. The Chargers are a team that do not look to be a threat, but they really are…just ask Green Bay.
Good Position for Buffalo
The Bills are in a position where all they have to do is win and do not need necessary victories/losses within the AFC. They have at least a one game advantage over these AFC teams. With the Bills’ next two games consisting of matchups against the Miami Dolphins and the Denver Broncos, they have a good setup to get themselves to eight wins on the season.
The Bills have to take advantage of these next two games because starting on Thanksgiving, their schedule becomes extremely difficult. The playoffs are right around the corner and Sean McDermott is looking to bring the Bills back to the playoffs for the second time in three years.
-Brandon Ray is a Managing Editor for Full Press Coverage and covers the Buffalo Bills. Make sure to follow Brandon on Twitter at @brandon_ray79.