Could the Buffalo Bills soon be the new AFC East champions?

Wiepert, Gary. “Buffalo Bills Defensive Tackle Marcell Dareus (99), Kyle Williams (95), an Jerry Hughes (55) Run onto the Field before an NFL Football Game against the New England Patriots Sunday, Sept. 20, 2015, in Orchard Park, N.Y. (AP Photo/Gary Wiepert).” AP Images, 20 Sept. 2015,

As I’m sure most NFL fans know, the Patriots have dominated the AFC East for the past eternity it seems like. It’s hard to describe just how dominant the Bill Belichick led Patriots have been. However, we can look at what the box scores reflect. Over the last 19 years, or since Bill has taken over as head coach of the Patriots, the Patriots have won the division 16 times. Funnily enough, they had their worst season during Bill’s first season as a head coach going 1-7 in their own division and finishing last place. Since then the Patriots have went 86-24 (o.781) against the AFC East. As Tom Brady gets older (who I will always adamantly think of as merely a prolific system quarterback) the Patriots will have to look at their future at quarterback unless they plan on trying to make Jarrett Stidham their next Brady. Regardless, I have to give it to Tom Brady, he definitely deserves the recognition of being considered the greatest, and frankly most perfect, system quarterback for the Patriots or anyone. I assume it would be hard to find someone who fits and embodies that New England Patriots scheme as much as Tom Brady (unless they by a miracle or incredibly odd probability manage to get a Justin Herbert or Trevor Lawrence). Looking towards the future it doesn’t look like the Patriots will continue to dominate forever, and could possibly be replaced quite quickly.

Bringing us to the Buffalo Bills who I believe have a future to look forward to with Josh Allen at quarterback. Realistically, the Bills 2019 outcome rests on the shoulders of the Bills offense. The defense was a underrated unit that only needs to match what they did last year in order for the team to win the AFC East. You may be offended to hear anyone suggest the Bills will win their division, because after all we are talking about a team that hasn’t won the AFC East since 1995 (Fun Fact: The Indianapolis Colts have been AFC East division champs in more recent history, winning it in 1999). I should admit that I never believed Josh Allen would develop into anything more than a game manager I see now that he is full of potential and could have a bright future ahead of him. Josh Allen’s QB record was a 5-6 record in 11 starts, good enough to help the Bills win 5 of their only 6 season wins. If you look at the box score you may not see great overall production from Allen but anyone who has seen him play can testify how much he elevates Buffalo. According to PFF, Josh Allen had the second highest percent of passes dropped by receivers at 6.3%. It might make sense when you see he was throwing to receivers and tight ends such as; Zay Jones, Robert Foster, Kelvin Benjamin, Jason Croom, and Charles Clay. Now, I’m not calling any of them bad but the Bill’s offensive weapons consisted of two very young receivers, an infamous bust for the Panthers (Yes, he’s a bust) who “is one Popeyes biscuit away from being a tight end”, a young undrafted tight end, and a vet who isn’t even on the roster currently. It should also be mentioned that Josh Allen led the team in rushing yards with 631 yards on 89 attempts, good enough to average about 16 more yards per game than Shady McCoy the next leading rusher. All of this to say, the Bills could have the biggest turnaround next year, offensively. The aforementioned young receivers Zay Jones and Robert Foster show great upside and could quietly develop into reliable targets for Josh Allen. The potential is there and has flashed for both. The Bills have also in recent years drafted very well, something that has been very under looked about Brandon Beane and the Bills FO. In 2017, Buffalo picked up Zay Jones and Dion Dawkins. In 2018 the Bills managed to get Josh Allen as well as Austin Proehl and Ray-Ray McCloud on day 3 who could very well become good role and depth players. We also can’t forget the great UDFA addition in Robert Foster that same year. Looking to this past draft the Bills picked up 3 potential starters for their offense within the first three rounds; Cody Ford (OT/OG, OU), Devin Singletary (RB, FAU), and Dawson Knox (TE, Ole Miss). The Bills have also managed to pickup under the radar players for the offense in free agency this past period. Picking up Cole Beasley, John Brown, Tyler Kroft, Frank Gore, and Andre Roberts. Cole Beasley is a very serviceable slot receiver for the Bills and John Brown gives Allen another deep threat to throw to which will almost certainly help Allen’s production and the team to have a more consistent offense. The addition of Frank Gore provides another good running back to share the workload with McCoy and provide a steady rushing attack. All the meanwhile it gives less attention to Allen and less pressure for him to also be worried about moving the chains with his own legs. Before talking about the defense we should definitely acknowledge the new and improved offensive lines, adding players such as Mitch Morse, Cody Ford, Ty Nsekhe, and Quinton Spain who could truthfully turn this offensive line into a top-16 line. This, allowing more time for Allen to make plays by letting him make his progressions and reads in the pocket without all the duress. If we look at the 2018 Bills offensive line compared to the potential 2019 Bills offensive line we see almost two completely different units. One line that lacked depth, leadership, and consistency compared to a new revamped line. Comparing Dion Dawkins, Vlad Ducasse, Russell Bodine, John Miller, and Jordan Mills to Cody Ford, Quinton Spain, Mitch Morse, Ty Nsekhe, and Dion Dawkins is unfair and seem like two different starting lineups for two different teams. If this line can stay healthy, the Bills offense and Josh Allen will be looking at a successful 2019 campaign.