August 13th, 2016
The Bills took their fan base by storm by Buffalo standards with their offensive prowess and multiple trips to the end zone per game. The biggest surprise is quite possibly had little to do with LeSean McCoy, more to do with scheme and a surprisingly balanced attack. This season the Bill roll out a top 10 WR in Sammie Watkins and a super deep backfield featuring McCoy, Reggie Bush, Karlos Williams, Mike Gillislee and Jerome Felton. There are other pass catchers as well, but will Tyrod Taylor improve at a rate that will make the Bills playoff contenders?
Defensively the Bills should be all right, after all defense is Rex Ryan’s bread and butter. The staff will have to adjust to the injuries to rookies Shaq Lawson and Reggie Ragland, both of who were to be impact starters this season, but even with this set back the Bills should be a resistant unit. The defense is deep and Brandon Spikes has been recently signed for the long haul. Aside from the Mario Williams departure, this unit is pretty much intact, so expect a more efficient offense to help this defense out even more this season.
Robert Woods and Charles Clay will enter the season with little fan fare this season, but they will come up with big play at big times. The better they are, the more room Sammy Watkins and the running game will have. Woods rate of improvement last season was remarkable, as he was one of the best WR2s, down the stretch. Clay started the season as hot as almost any TE, but leveled off as the season wore on. Expect both to be an active part of this offense moving forward.
Jerome Felton is a Pro-Bowl full back. The former Furman University star, has settled into his roll as lead blocker very nicely and did wonders for Adrian Peterson. Expect the same production as he opens up holes for McCoy and Williams…. Ok… and Reggie Bush sometimes.
Stay away from the Buffalo – you’ve been warned. LeSean McCoy has no place going in the first two rounds, and Reggie Bush and Karlos Williams and Mike Gillislee are all serviceable backs who will steal carries. Look for Rex Ryan to still lean on McCoy, but understand the importance of keeping his playmaking back healthy by distributing the wealth to the other backs who are all pretty decent as long as they are not in full time rolls.
The story of the Bills will be known by the fourth week as the Bills first month of treachery includes at Baltimore, against the Jets and the Cardinals, and then at the New England against to Tom Brady-less Patriots. If the Bills can’t compete in that fourth game, there’s pretty much no hope for them in their division. This team can go 9-7 and battle for a wild card, but will likely still be third in their division.