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End of the 2019 season toughest slate for Buffalo Bills

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The end of the season will provide Buffalo with what could be their biggest challengers all season

With NFL training camps and preseason slates just more than a month away, it is easy for fans of all teams to be sipping their team’s respective Kool-Aid® and dreaming of playoff pushes and titles.

Without a doubt, the Bills’ toughest part of the schedule is from Weeks 12 to 16. During that five-week stretch, the Bills play three road games against teams that each have legitimate Super Bowl aspirations: Dallas Cowboys, Pittsburgh Steelers and New England Patriots.

That season-defining stretch starts with a home game against the Denver Broncos, who should be improved with Joe Flacco under center. Usually in late November/early December the Bills have a decided home-field advantage thanks to the weather, but the Broncos are also accustomed to frigid temperatures and precipitation—so that edge won’t be as prominent.

The Bills’ next game will be a difficult one thanks to it coming on a short week and falling on a national holiday. As we all know by now, Buffalo will be headed to Big D to take on the Cowboys on Thanksgiving. On short weeks, the home team has a decided advantage and Dallas has a stacked offense and stout defense that could cause problems for the Bills.

The one benefit of a short week is that the following game is like a mini bye week. Following the turkey day tilt with Dallas, the Bills host the Baltimore Ravens. The last match-up for the Bills against Baltimore didn’t go so well, with Buffalo getting waxed 47-3 on opening weekend in 2018. While the Ravens’ offense has become decidedly different with Lamar Jackson instead of Joe Flacco, it will still provide a unique challenge. Stopping the Baltimore running game won’t be easy and the Ravens always have a defense that can cause fits.

The final two games of this five-game stretch are without a doubt the Bills’ hardest pair of the 2019 season. In Week 15, Buffalo travels to the Steel City to take on Pittsburgh. The Steelers this year are bound to rebound, especially after their addition by subtraction moves of jettisoning LeVeon Bell and Antonio Brown. The Bills always seem to struggle playing in the ‘Burgh and with possible playoff positioning on the line for Pittsburgh, Buffalo should be getting Big Ben and company on their A-game.

Week 16 sees the Bills heading to New England for their annual game at Foxborough. Simply put the Patriots (or more specifically Bill Belicheck and Tom Brady) have owned Buffalo this century and, unfortunately, there are no signs of them letting up any time soon. The Bills do have more hope than usual with Josh Allen, a top-tier defense and improved weapons around Allen. If Buffalo is to make the playoffs and become a true contender, these are the types of games late in a season they will have to win.

So what do you all think? Is this actually the toughest stretch for the Bills in 2019? Or are you buying into the New York Jets and Cleveland Browns hype, and see those as the true challenges for Buffalo? Let us know in the comments.

2019 Buffalo Bills schedule

Week Date Time (Eastern) Opponent Notes
Week Date Time (Eastern) Opponent Notes
Pre-1 Aug 8 7:00 PM INDIANAPOLIS COLTS Former Bills QB Frank Reich returns as coach of Colts
Pre-2 Aug 16 7:00 PM @ Carolina Panthers Second year in a row against McDermott & Beane's former team
Pre-3 Aug 23 8:00 PM @ Detroit Lions After one year off, BUF/DET is back on
Pre-4 Aug 29 7:00 PM MINNESOTA VIKINGS Two home games, maybe two combined drives with the starters
1 Sep 8 1:00 p.m. @ New York Jets Darnold vs Allen is early this year
2 Sep 15 1:00 p.m. @ New York Giants Two straight trips to the same stadium
3 Sep 22 1:00 p.m. CINCINNATI BENGALS Bills home opener
4 Sep 29 1:00 p.m. NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS Patriots have struggled in September over last five seasons
5 Oct 6 1:00 p.m. @ Tennessee Titans Best road trip option of 2019?
6 Oct 14 BYE
7 Oct 20 1:00 p.m. MIAMI DOLPHINS Josh Rosen could be under center
8 Oct 27 1:00 p.m. PHILADELPHIA EAGLES Middle of four straight weeks in Orchard Park
9 Nov 3 1:00 p.m. WASHINGTON Will a rookie QB be in by now?
10 Nov 10 1:00 p.m. @ Cleveland Browns Mayfield vs Allen is gonna be fun
11 Nov 17 1:00 p.m. @ Miami Dolphins Alternated wins and losses in Miami since 2012 (BUF's turn to win)
12 Nov 24 1:00 p.m. DENVER BRONCOS Will a rookie QB be in by now?
13 THANKSGIVING 4:30 p.m. @ Dallas Cowboys First time on Thanksgiving since 1994
14 Dec 8 1:00 p.m. BALTIMORE RAVENS Jackson vs Allen in another second-year QB battle
15 Dec 15 1:00 p.m. @ Pittsburgh Steelers Bills haven't won in PIT since 1993 playoffs
16 Dec 21/22 TBD @ New England Patriots Could be played Saturday or Sunday
17 Dec 29 1:00 p.m. NEW YORK JETS The Bills open and close the season against the Jets
Playoffs TBD