It might be a New York team that poses a threat to the reigning Super Bowl champion Chiefs after all – except they’re 370 miles northwest of MetLife Stadium.
The Buffalo Bills looked like legitimate Super Bowl contenders Sunday, when they handed the Steelers their second loss of the season with a 26-15 victory.
At 10-3, the franchise’s best record after 13 games since 1991, the Bills would clinch a playoff spot Monday with a Ravens loss and could clinch the AFC East next weekend as they seek the franchise’s first Super Bowl title.
So with New Yorkers preparing not to see Daniel Jones or Sam Darnold compete in the playoffs this season, who will they be watching?
In his third year, Josh Allen has grown into the franchise quarterback the Bills have been missing since Jim Kelly took them to four straight Super Bowls in the 90s.
“I’m super proud of this team,” Allen, who has a franchise record 34 total touchdowns this season, told NBC after Sunday’s game.
“We’re super resilient. We’re not going to let things get to us too often. We’re a mentally tough team, guys that care about each other, so it’s an all-around, a great team win.”
When the Vikings traded wide receiver Stefon Diggs to Buffalo in March, the Bills gave Allen the dynamic weapon they lacked. Diggs, who leads the league with 100 receptions, has played a big part of Buffalo’s success.
The Bills offense sputtered for much of the first half as they trailed 7-0, but turned it around at the end of the second quarter.
“I started completing it to the right guys and my guys did a good job of getting open,” said Allen of the second half, per the team’s website. “But I think you saw right when we came out that I started getting it to 1-4 (Diggs). We liked our matchup out there and I can say with a lot of confidence, I think I like any matchup with 1-4. He’s one of the best, if not the best guy in the league, but I have supreme confidence in him.”
Diggs had six targets with three receptions for 38 yards in the first half before bringing down seven of eight targets for 92 yards and a touchdown in the second. In the third quarter alone, Diggs caught all six of his targets for 83 yards and a score.
If Diggs records more 202 receiving yards in the final three games of the regular season, he’ll break Eric Moulds’ single-season franchise record for receiving yards (1,368) set in 1998.
That could be just the beginning of a historic Bills season.