The Buffalo Bills (4-2) are one of only three teams in the NFL with a perfect home record— along with the 2-0 Seattle Seahawks and the 3-0 Philadelphia Eagles— and Buffalo’s opponent Sunday has struggled mightily in recent years playing on the East Coast.
The Oakland Raiders travel to New Era Field at 1 p.m. Sunday for an important AFC showdown with the Bills.
From 2009-2015, when the Raiders have been faced with the challenge of leaving their West Coast home and flying east for their weekly NFL game, they have won just two out of 21 games during those seven seasons, including a 38-35 setback to the Ryan Fitzpatrick-led Bills on Sept. 18, 2011.
In that game, Buffalo rallied from a 21-3 halftime deficit as Fitzpatrick tossed three second-half touchdowns and Fred Jackson ran for a pair of scores to spark the comeback.
The Raiders reversed their East Coast troubles in 2016, going 3-0 with victories over the Baltimore Ravens (28-27), the Jacksonville Jaguars (33-16), and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (30-24) en route to a 12-4 record and a Wild Card berth.
In 2017, the Raiders dropped their only other East Coast game, falling 27-10 to the Washington Redskins on Sunday Night Football, Sept. 24. The Raiders will also travel to face the Miami Dolphins (Nov. 5), and the Eagles (Dec. 25), though those games occur in prime time on Sunday Night Football and Monday Night Football, respectively.
The Bills and Raiders, former American Football League rivals, have met 40 times in this rivalry, with the Raiders owning a 21-19 edge. Buffalo triumphed both times the teams met in the playoffs, including routing the (Los Angeles) Raiders 51-3 in the AFC championship game to advance to the franchise’s first-ever Super Bowl during the 1990 season.