Bills continue playoff push with win over struggling Redskins

Quarterback Josh Allen #17 of the Buffalo Bills throws a pass in the first quarter against the Tennessee Titans at New Era Field. (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)
Quarterback Josh Allen #17 of the Buffalo Bills throws a pass in the first quarter against the Tennessee Titans at New Era Field. (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images) /

The Buffalo Bills continue to win the games they should – and there’s nothing wrong with that as they make a push for playoffs.

The Buffalo Bills took care of business Sunday, defeating the Washington Redskins 24-9.

The win moved the Bills to 6-2, and helped extend their lead at the front of the pack of potential AFC wild card teams.

It was a good rebound game for Sean McDermott’s team, who were disappointed the last time out by the Philadelphia Eagles. It also came at a rather crucial point in the season – the end of a rather unusual homestand that saw the Bills play three home games in a row, and five of six within the familiar confines of New Era Field.

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The Bills will now play three of their next four on the road, and only have three games to look forward to the rest of the way.

Much will be said about the Bills and their sixth win, coming against a Washington team that is clearly in a state of rebuilding. But one narrative that should be dismissed immediately is the quality of the Bills six wins.

“Yea, but look at who they’ve played…” Is thrown around a lot in the NFL, as if it means absolutely anything.

It doesn’t.

This isn’t college football, where your strength of schedule will help sway a committee that you are more deserving of a playoff spot than your opponent. Nor is it college football in the sense that schools get to schedule three to four games a year outside of their fixed conference schedule – an opportunity to make the path harder and more impressive, or to play it safe with easy games.

This is the NFL. The schedule is fixed on a cycle, and you can project out who 14 of your 16 games will be against through the next decade. Yet somehow, we have been conditioned to act as if beating a bad team shouldn’t be considered a real win –when this is the one sport where that thinking is the LEAST factual.

Yes, the Bills six wins have come against a bunch of embarrassing, works-in-progress. There isn’t a single playoff team among them. But isn’t that what good teams do? Take care of the mediocre team on their schedule, and play the good teams close?

With eight games to go, and on a day where the other wild-card or bust teams all won (Steelers, Raiders, and Chargers), the Bills continued to beat the teams they should beat, something those other teams have failed to do in the first two months of the season. And if they continue to do that, they will assure themselves a playoff spot.

Obviously, last week’s performance isn’t going to cut it in the playoffs, but the Bills also have a one-score loss to the Patriots from earlier in the year, where one slow quarter did them in.
Looking through the remaining schedule, the Bills have two games remaining against sure-fire “tough” opponents (Patriots, Ravens); a couple difficult road games (Pittsburgh and Dallas), and a bunch of teams that are an absolute tire fire.

This team that everyone’s saying can only beat “bad” teams could amount to ten wins, easily making the wild card in this year’s AFC.

If that happens, and the usual injuries and playoff craziness ensues as it always does, do you think any of the Bills (or the fans) will care “who they beat to get there?”

They won’t. Because they’ll be one of the 12 (or even 8) teams playing for a championship. And everyone else will be checking next year’s schedule.

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What did you think about the Bills win? Can they get into the playoffs and be a formidable team in the post-season? Let us know in the comments below.