As a child born in the 80’s, the “glory days” for the Bills in the 90’s for my young football mind, were under appreciated by me. I loved the Bills because my Dad did, and as a young boy growing up in Western New York, did I even have a choice? Even as I developed my own love for them in this time, my appreciation for football, or any professional sport for that matter, was mere dismal compared to where it is today. Since those “glory days” though, my love for the Bills has come with a very high cost, the cost of countless heartbreaks. The Bills have become a dictionary version of a “roller coaster ride”, constantly bringing us up, filling us with such anticipation and shear excitement, then within seconds were flying back down screaming our heads off at our HD televisions. Another definition I think of associated to us Bills fans is that of the word insanity. Doing the same thing every year, hoping that maybe this is the year, and then experiencing the same results, that being the Bills on the outside looking in.
Last year was just another perfect example of the typical, and all too relevant, Bills NFL season. They looked like a team that Bills fans haven’t seen in over a decade and they were WINNING! They were never out of a game, and showed such grit and determination, as much of their early success came after being down. They beat the freaking Patriots, and in such a good, hard fought, NFL football game. As Bills fans those first weeks were the first time in too long where our expectations were met and gratefully exceeded. However, as most Bills often do, and in good reason to all the let downs of the past, never truly believed the Bills were for real until they were still there in week 17. And so the story goes and the Bills were once again on the outside looking in.
Now here we are again, day 1 of the official season for the NFL and for our Buffalo Bills. A start to a season like no other, all thanks to the head-turning offseason the Bills had. We all know of the re-signings and the free agent acquisitions; we all know of the solid draft the Bills had and the confidence as a team they have coming into this year, but still us as Bills fans can’t let go of the past. Our hearts have been broken too many times and the only prescription is a playoff berth, hell they don’t even have to win the actual game, just getting there would suffice for me. There will always be questions as to the who the team that shows up will be and whether or not they can make it last for a season and not just one half.
Yet, this year seems different, and I really just want to guarantee a playoff berth in lucky year 13, but I have to step back and be realistic, knowing that sometimes what always happens sometimes seems to always happen. The Bills as a organization have had an offseason like no other, have established a good set of core players filled in with young, quality talent and actually appear as a decent looking squad on paper. There front four on defense have the potential to be one of the best in the league and if that’s the case one can only assume the secondary would improve from that. Defense wins championships, so the cliche goes, but as important as it is to stop the other team from scoring, another cliche says, you can’t win games kicking field goals. The Bills offense is where the potential is but also where many questions are still in need of answers. Is Ryan Fitzpatrick our guy? Do we have enough talent at wide receiver? Which C.J. Spiller our we going to see? Is the offensive line finally going to be respectable? Those are just a few of many, but the number one being, can and will the Bills score t.
Signing off I would just like to say, this season shall be interesting regardless of any expectations. The Bills no matter what, should at the very least be competitive, a team not checked as an automatic win on oppossing teams schedules. So as the NFL starts another new season, so comes with it the love, the hate, the good and the bad, the ups and the downs we as Bills fans seem to love experiancing year after year.