Tonight’s Monday Night game pits the Buffalo Bills and Kansas City Chiefs against each other with a plethora of playoff implications.
The Buffalo Bills game today against the Kansas City Chiefs is more than just the kickoff of a rare Monday night doubleheader.
It’s a chance for the AFC East’s best team to prove it’s a Super Bowl contender.
Six weeks into this now not-so-new NFL season, and there is an unfamiliar team at the top of the East. For the first time since 2002, the New England Patriots are under .500 in October, and the Bills have quite the cushion in the division.
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With a two-game lead already, and the way the team has played in the first five weeks, Buffalo should have higher aspirations. The division isn’t the only thing in play – they have an argument for being the best team in the conference. An argument that will be bolstered or hindered considerably based on how they play tonight.
While it may be awkward for Bill’s fans to think this way after their performance last week against the Tennessee Titans, it’s really not that lofty a goal. Yes, the Titans game should give all of Bills mafia pause, but the lead up to that game was uniquely suited to benefit Tennessee and not Buffalo.
Consider the position the league put the Bills in. They were told on Friday, a mere four days away from their game, to prepare to possibly play Tennessee on Tuesday, if there were no more positive tests out of the Titans. If there was a single positive test at any point in the next few days, the plan would change, and the Bills would play the Chiefs on Thursday.
To tell Buffalo to essentially prepare for two different teams – two VERY different teams – on such short notice was one of the most unnecessary and unprofessional things the league could have done. The amount of scouting, scheming, and practice that goes into each team’s preparation in the NFL is so opponent specific, it put the Bills at a disadvantage from the get-go.
The Bills looked a step behind the Titans last week, woefully unprepared – because, of course, they were! They had rightly spent the few days prepping for the Chiefs, their regularly scheduled game.
A bullet-point note on Friday saying you may play the Titans instead if they stop having positive tests wouldn’t have stopped that, the Titans had had a positive test every few days for almost three weeks. By the time the league made the move official on Sunday, now the Bills had to throw out the game-plan and prepare in 48 hours.
Of course, this adds an extra little wrinkle to the game tonight – there are no more excuses for the Buffalo Bills. No one could begrudge them of their performance against Tennessee, the circumstances were ridiculous. But that excuse is gone now. Now, you are facing an opponent you’ve had more than a week to prepare for, who you theoretically have been scheming for most of last week as well.
Now is the true test for Buffalo – after beating up on lower competition, they face another division leader, another team that the road to the AFC championship would surely go through.
If the Bills can hand the Chiefs their second straight loss, or even if they play them close, then Buffalo starts looking like one of the best teams in the league – not just their division.
What are your thoughts on tonight’s Bills’ game against the Chiefs ? Can they step up and prove their status as contenders? Let us know in the comments below.