Simms: Didn't think Bills were Super Bowl contenders, but 'that's all changed'

NBC Sports' Pro Football Talk co-host Chris Simms joined the Howard and Jeremy Show ahead of Sunday's night matchup with the Steelers
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For a second-consecutive season, the Buffalo Bills are off to a 9-3 start after a 34-24 win over the San Francisco 49ers on Monday night in Glendale, Arizona.

Heading into Week 14, the Bills remain one game ahead of the Miami Dolphins for the top spot in the AFC East. Buffalo has not won a division title since the 1995 season, whereas Miami has captured the AFC East crown twice since then.

The Bills could be playing the game of the week around the National Football League this Sunday night when the 11-1 Pittsburgh Steelers stroll into town coming off their first loss of the 2020 season on Monday to the Washington Football Team.

With the Bills coming off, arguably, their best performance of the 2020 season and being regarded as one of the top teams in the AFC, the talk around town has started to get to this team's chances of potentially playing for Super Bowl LV on Feb. 7 in Tampa Bay, Florida. While the team is certainly taking things one game at a time, the hype surrounding the team is starting to get louder.

The one player who has really helped push Buffalo into potential Super Bowl conversation is quarterback Josh Allen, who maybe played his best game of the season against the 49ers with 375 yards passing, an 80% completion rate and four touchdowns. The 24-year-old signal caller was named the AFC Offensive Player of the Week on Wednesday for the third time this season, making him the first Bills player in franchise history to earn the honor three times in one year.

Chris Simms from NBC Sports' Pro Football Talk is one person in the national media who is impressed with the way the Allen and the Bills have performed this season. He joined the Howard and Jeremy Show on Wednesday to talk more about the Bills and if they are true contenders to play in the Super Bowl later this season.

Here is some of what Simms had to say:

Simms on Allen's Monday night performance against the 49ers:
"I think that was the best game he's played in his whole career. ... There was a little of everything in that game with Josh Allen. There was great individual feats where he makes plays where him, [Patrick] Mahomes, [Aaron] Rodgers, Deshaun Watson, Russell Wilson, they're the only ones that can make those plays in football. That's it. Then there was great moments of being surgical, making the right decisions, reading the defense the right way. It had it all from that aspect. Then of course, Buffalo is in the thick of things in the AFC and the importance of that game. All of it was amazing."

Simms on some of the negative standpoints still surrounding Allen:
"[The draft process is] where a lot of this hate still is with Josh Allen. I'm watching ESPN this morning and they're still talking crap about Josh Allen and my mind wants to blow. I don't understand that. It's all because of a little bit of the negativity surrounding him in the draft process. He played up in blizzards [at Wyoming] with the worst college team I've seen any major NFL quarterback play with the last few years. ... I know the completion percentage thing, yeah it was a little loose certainly, but I never thought it was going to be a detriment to his career. It's hard to be real accurate when you're not pass protecting, you have no receivers that are open, and then you're playing in the worst elements in the country in college football. ... I think that's really set him up for a negative background all the time, and that's why I was happy about Monday night just to shut some of those people up."

Simms on Allen's potential heading into the long-term for the Bills:
"There [are] very few quarterbacks in the history of the sport that I look at and just think, 'Doesn't matter about the team, they can just carry the squad.' That's Aaron Rodgers and Brett Favre and Patrick Mahomes. We might be seeing Josh Allen pretty much go into this stratosphere here very soon too."

Simms on the Bills being potential Super Bowl contenders in 2020:
"If you asked me this question four or five weeks ago, I would've thought, 'Eh, no. Buffalo is a playoff team, they might win one game, it'd be fun and then they'd get to play a second game and lose and it might be exciting. They can't really make a Super Bowl run.' I didn't think so. I didn't think they had enough versatility in the offense yet when teams play soft coverage, where they're going to be patient to execute and go five-to-eight yards at a time. I wasn't sure if they were capable of that at that point. And the way the defense was playing six weeks ago, you just thought they weren't going to be able to stop the better offenses in the AFC. That's all changed."

Simms on Sunday night's matchup with the Steelers in Orchard Park:
"[The Bills] match up very well with the Pittsburgh Steelers. I know they're 11-1. They can't run the ball. That's good for Buffalo. Now Sean McDermott and Leslie Frazier can put one more egg into the 'Stop the run game' basket. As good as Pittsburgh's defense is, I think everybody's overrated it. They haven't played a high-octane offense with a real big-time quarterback all year long. If you can protect, and now they have no Bud Dupree, I think there's big question marks about their cover guys, they're good but not special, and their pass rush hasn't been killing it lately either. I would not be shocked if Buffalo wins this Sunday."

You can listen to the entire interview below: