Another Monday, another Buffalo Bills win. This time over a team that, at this time, last week was 11-0.
Shall I pause to give us all the opportunity to yawn and stretch?
While you struggle to answer, I’m reminded of something I wrote after the Week 1 win over the New York Jets. I know, I know, why bother with that when the Bills have just knocked the entire country on their rear ends in prime-time the past two weeks.
It’s just that back in September, we weren’t sure, or at least I wasn’t sure, what we might get from the Bills and Josh Allen this season. I was optimistic about progress, sure, but one of the very best quarterbacks in the NFL? That would take some doing.
Allen went 33-of-46 for 312 yards, a pair of scores, and also added another touchdown rushing in the season opener. Afterwards, I wrote this to close out my recap:
“If it’s a sign of the step Allen intends to take this season, lookout.
If it’s a one-off, well, good job, good game.
Watching this unfold is going to be a blast.”
It’s most obviously been a blast so far, and Allen’s continued excellent play is the main reason for it. No, Allen did not have an eye-popping statistical night against the Steelers, but what he did in the second half against this season’s toughest defense was extremely impressive.
Allen opened the second half by completing 10 straight passes and was 14-of-20 for 162 yards and two touchdown passes after the break.
Less than a week after surgically dismantling Robert Saleh’s much talked about San Francisco 49ers defense, there was Allen again, doing the Steelers in. Just a week ago I was wondering how up to the test Allen would be facing the tough schemes of the 49ers and Steelers.
One need not waste any more time wondering. With all the talk of “statement wins” lately, I’m starting to think the Bills should hire a press secretary to hold daily media briefings.
Week 3 against the Los Angeles Rams: early statement.
Week 9 against the Seattle Seattle: mid-season statement.
Week 13 against the 49ers: post-bye week, prime-time statement.
Week 14 against the Steelers: knocking off a Super Bowl contender statement.
Look, the only statement we need, the only one that really matters, is the conclusion you should reach after you’ve considered the strength of those statement wins.
The Bills are contenders. Real contenders. Not just for the AFC East because Brady’s gone and the New England Patriots are on their way down. Not just contenders to host a playoff game or even actually win a playoff game.
The Bills are contenders for the Super Bowl.
That’s the only statement you need.