Is it time to trust the Buffalo Bills again?
While it has been a roller coaster ride for them over their last six games, they dominated the New Orleans Saints in their previous assignment, 31-6.
However, they failed to defeat two AFC playoff hopefuls during that stretch.
Worst, their loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars still goes beyond logic.
As it stands, the Bills will carry some momentum from their recent victory into Week 13.
But standing in their way is their long-time nemesis.
Last year’s New England Patriots seem a distant memory.
This season, they can end Buffalo’s hopes for a second consecutive division title for good.
What’s Wrong With The Bills?
It’s like someone controls them with a master switch.
One week, they look like the squad that went to the AFC Championship Game last season.
Regardless of the reason, the Bills do not look invincible, which Bill Belichick will exploit in this AFC East matchup.
— NFL Total Access (@NFLTotalAccess) December 2, 2021
Still, Buffalo has one of the best defensive units this season.
Unfortunately, they’ve allowed 28.6 points per game during their three most recent setbacks.
That’s a two-touchdown addition to their 16.5 average through Week 12.
Knowing Belichick, he has already reviewed countless hours of Bills game tape before drawing up a plan.
What’s frightening for the Bills is that the Patriots have a defense that can match theirs.
Patriots Defense through 12 Games
Total DVOA: 2nd
Pass DVOA: 2nd
Rush DVOA: 10th
Yards per Play: 3rd
Turnovers: 2nd pic.twitter.com/Pgc8XPjgWD
— El Capitãn (@DomGonzo12) December 1, 2021
New England has allowed only 10.5 points per game during their six-game winning streak.
They’ve limited three opponents to less than 10 points throughout that stretch, including a shutout victory over the Atlanta Falcons.
The scary part is that there’s still room for this unit to get better.
What Buffalo Must Do To Win
The Bills defense will create pressure against Mac Jones and the Patriots offense.
But that’s a given key to victory, and Jones will inevitably find his targets given his accuracy.
However, Allen and the Buffalo offense must turn their game up a notch.
Rediscovering the prowess of their run game will help wear down New England’s defense.
"Josh Allen is the best player on the field and he's going to deliver an MVP kind of performance." pic.twitter.com/qko7LCCmoI
— CBS Sports Network (@CBSSportsNet) December 2, 2021
More importantly, Allen must take advantage of having a better offensive unit.
With so many weapons on their arsenal, their opponents might have a hard time accounting for all of their assets on every snap, especially if some of New England’s starters don’t get to play.
Take Advantage Of Injuries
Kyle Dugger won’t be seeing action against Buffalo and is now on the reserve/COVID-19 list.
The Patriots defense will weaken if all three players end up skipping the Week 13 game.
Regardless of their opponent’s status, the Bills must treat this game as a must-win situation.
They won’t be out of the playoff picture yet, but a loss to the Patriots throws them into the AFC Wild Card logjam at 7-5.
— Built in Buffalo (@BuiltInBuffalo_) December 1, 2021
Instead of shaping their destiny, they might rely on other teams to enter the postseason.
Aside from the playoffs being a non-guarantee, their schedule to close out the regular season isn’t a breeze either.
They will face the Patriots again on the road in Week 16 but not before battling against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers next week.
Losing three of their last six games gives them a 10-7 record, which is impressive but potentially not good enough for a playoff ticket.