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NFL playoff schedule, January 7th: Buffalo Bills connections

The Bills connections and the viewing info for today’s playoff games.

The 2017 NFL playoffs start today, and while the Buffalo Bills missed the postseason for the 17th straight season, some of you may actually enjoy watching other teams play. There’s also a host of former Bills on the field today you should keep an eye out for.

Oakland Raiders at Houston Texans

4:35 p.m. ET, ESPN

The Bills lost to the Oakland Raiders this year, despite a 21-point run by the offense. The defense collapsed at the hands of MVP candidate Derek Carr who injured his leg in Week 16 and won’t be available for this contest. That makes it a wide open contest.

The most notable connection to Buffalo on the Raiders is former University of Buffalo start defensive stud Khalil Mack, who is tearing up NFL offenses left and right and ended the Bills’ game with a strip-sack. Former Bills wide receivers coach Rob Moore (2013-2014) is Oakland’s receivers coach under Jack Del Rio. Former Bills defensive line coach Anthony Weaver (2013) coaches the same position for the Texans.

Detroit Lions at Seattle Seahawks

8:15 p.m. ET, NBC

Buffalo lost to Seattle on a Monday Night in the middle of their season. There were some shenanigans with a field goal before the end of the first half that cost the Bills points and then they couldn’t score a game-winning touchdown late in the fourth quarter. It was a fun game, though.

It should be noted that the Bills are interviewing Seattle defensive coordinator Kris Richard for their vacant head coach job after the game. If they want to hire him anytime soon, they’ll need Seattle to lose. Lions defensive coordinator Teryl Austin interviewed with Buffalo two years ago before they hired Rex Ryan and he was on rumored lists this time around but nothing is scheduled with him at this point.

Former Bills running back Joique Bell is on the Lions roster. While he has been a starter for them in previous seasons, he only played in three games this year rushing with no rushes and one catch for negative yardage. Detroit cornerback Crezdon Butler has been on and off the Lions roster since leaving the Bills after the 2012 season. The Lions also employ tight end Matthew Mulligan (1 catch, eight yards in 2016) who spent 2015 in Buffalo. Former Bills defensive lineman Stefan Charles is on injured reserve.