It’s pretty fitting that the battle for the AFC East begins with Bills vs Patriots on Monday Night Football. The Patriots are coming back from a season without Tom Brady and a season without a playoff appearance. The Buffalo Bills are looking for pretty much anything good to happen right now. Two years of mediocre results aren’t going down very well in Buffalo. This matchup has the feel og two teams clawing to get back into the mix of elite NFl football teams.
It’s been awhile since the New England Patriots have been though of as anything but Super Bowl contenders. In fact, if not for the Miami Dolphins startling resurgence last season, the Patriots would probably have been favorites once the playoffs began. Now that Brady is back, they’ve been catapulted to the forefront again, and are odds on favorite to be in Miami. The odd thing to me though, is that I’ve got a hunch that the Patriots may have a hard time returning to their former status. Nothing lasts forever, and a Patriots dynasty is just as likely to fall as any other. Here’s where the Bills come in.
The Buffalo Bills are a team on the cusp. Trent Edwards is moving into his prime. Marshawn Lynch, if he can stay out of trouble, along with T.O. could push this offense to new heights. The Bills defense, while nothing spectacular, is good enough to win games. Elsewhere in the AFC East lurk the Dolphins, a Bill Parcels product that looks to be in the picture also. Combine the two and the ethereal New York Jets uncertainty syndrome, and you’ve got an AFC East that’s about as open as it’s been in the last half dozen years. Toss in a New England Patriots offensive line that’s not dominating anyone, the possibility of another Brady injury, and you’ve got a battle in a division that the Patriots had formerly locked up.