For the first time in 17 seasons, the Buffalo Bills will be playing in a National Football League playoff game. Most Bills fans will be satisfied with just ending The Drought, but Sean McDermott and his players surely want more. The Jacksonville Jaguars are a tough opponent, but thankfully their offensive and defensive weaknesses are very closely aligned to the Bills’ strengths.
Buffalo offense vs. Jacksonville defense
The Jaguars have a great defense—the best according to DVOA. If there is a weakness in it though, it is in the run game. Their defense ranks just 26th in the league against the run. Buffalo’s rushing attack isn’t what it was last season, but it is still, by far, the best part of the offense. LeSean McCoy’s health will definitely be a factor, but the Bills should be able to move the ball on the ground against the Jaguars.
Buffalo defense vs. Jacksonville offense
Jacksonville’s offense is not nearly as good as their defense, but it is still in the top half of the league. Where they do rank in the bottom half of the league is turnovers. Blake Bortles and company have the 12th-most turnovers in the league with 23. They’ve also committed multiple turnovers in six games this season. In those games the team is 2-4. Lining up opposite Bortles will be McDermott & Leslie Frazier’s opportunistic defense. The Bills have forced the 11th-most turnovers this season and have caused multiple turnovers in seven games. They’re 6-1 in those games. If the Bills defense can create takeaways (and maybe even points) it would go a long way to getting the franchise its first playoff victory since 1995.
The Jaguars are not the assumed victory that they once were. They’ve put together a tough defense and an offense that can get very hot. The Bills will have their hands full on Sunday in Duval County, but luckily for them, the Jaguars weaknesses play right into their strengths.