SI.com took a look at the regular season schedule for each of the NFL’s 32 clubs to see which was that team’s game to circle. Essentially SI’s Don Banks looks at the toughest game on each team’s schedule that could potentially alter the course of that club’s season. The one game he picked for the Bills should come as little surprise.
He hedged a bit as he picked either of Buffalo’s two games against division nemesis New England, partly because it’s up in the air as to whether Tom Brady will be available for the Week 4 matchup, since that would be the last week of his upheld suspension for Deflategate. Here was his assessment.
Buffalo (Week 4 or 8 vs. New England): It almost goes without saying that for Rex Ryan and his long-suffering Bills, the white whale they both have long pursued hails from Foxborough, Mass. Beating the Patriots is where the story starts and ends for Buffalo, which is still working on that mind-boggling 16-year playoff drought. The Bills were 0–2 against Belichick and Brady last season, finishing 8–8 and in third place in the AFC East. This year, Week 4 brings the first test, with the Bills trying to win for the only second time ever at Gillette Stadium (and that 2014 Week 17 upset came when Brady was yanked early with the playoffs looming). If Brady’s suspension is in effect on Oct. 2, the focus will shift to the Week 8 rematch in Buffalo, with even more on the line in terms of the Bills’ quest to return to division relevancy.
Do you agree? I admit it’s hard to argue. If the Bills want to contend for the division title to ensure an end to the playoff drought they have to at least split with the Patriots this season.
For what it’s worth Banks had the Jets toughest game being their Week 2 matchup in Buffalo with the Bills. He even called it the Rex hex for the Jets after the Bills swept New York last season.
Tags: AFC East, Bills 2016 schedule
Posted in Inside the Bills