The Buffalo Bills faced a difficult six-day stretch over the last two weeks of the 2020 NFL season. They traveled to Nashville to take on the Tennessee Titans on October 13, then came home to Orchard Park to host the Kansas City Chiefs on October 19. Consecutive games (both of which had to be rescheduled due to coronavirus complications) against the reigning AFC Championship Game participants is no easy feat for any team, and the Bills did not fare well in either contest.
After enduring a 42-16 blowout loss to Tennessee, Buffalo slogged through a 26-17 mop-up at the hands of the Chiefs. While the score of last night’s game is closer than the one in Tennessee, it never felt like the game was in reach. The Chiefs outgained Buffalo 466-206 and held the ball for 37:45. It was a dominant win for the defending Super Bowl champs.
The Bills fell a bit in most power rankings this week as a result. As of our last writing, there were outlets placing Buffalo among the top three or four teams in the league. After two straight losses, the Bills remain in the top ten, but they no longer find themselves in the upper-echelon of the rankings.
Pete Prisco at CBS Sports has Buffalo ranked No. 9 overall, down from No. 8 overall heading into this week. He said that the offense has “sputtered” over the last two games, which is certainly true. It’s an odd note to make, though, when the defense has allowed 68 points and 384 rushing yards over the last two weeks.
Mike Florio at Pro Football Talk has Buffalo ranked No. 10 overall, down two spots from their No. 8 ranking headed into the week. Florio writes that “when the Chiefs decide to run all day long, you know you have a bad run defense.” After watching Clyde Edwards-Helaire run through wide-open lanes at will last night, I have to agree.
Marcel Louis-Jacques at ESPN has Buffalo ranked No. 8, down from No. 5 last week. He notes that Buffalo’s biggest injury thus far has been to linebacker Matt Milano, who has missed three games this season due to a variety of ailments. A hamstring issue forced him to miss the game against the Miami Dolphins, and a pectoral injury kept him out of the games against Tennessee and Kansas City and perhaps further into the season. Louis-Jacques feels that Milano’s “injury history” may hurt him in contract negotiations, and while I have heard that argument, I disagree entirely. Milano has played in 49 of a possible 56 games in his career, including playoffs. He missed three games in 2018 due to a broken ankle, one in 2019 due to a hamstring issue, and three so far this year due to hamstring and pec strains. If anything, Buffalo’s defensive struggles without him in the lineup should only add to his bargaining ability.
Matt Williamson at Pro Football Network has Buffalo ranked No. 8 this week. He notes that the Bills played their worst game of the year against Tennessee, but they followed it up with a dud against the Chiefs. While acknowledging the impact of the poor weather, he called it “alarming” that Buffalo struggled so mightily throwing the ball.
Vinnie Iyer at The Sporting News has Buffalo ranked No. 8 this week, down from the No. 5 spot last week. He seems to have written his blurb about the team prior to last night’s game, since he writes about Buffalo’s defense being “exposed badly” against Tennessee. He noted that Josh Allen would have to lead Buffalo’s offense in a clean performance in order to defeat the Chiefs. Allen did not.
Finally, Frank Schwab at Yahoo! has Buffalo ranked No. 8 this week, down from No. 7 last week. He writes that he’s been “high on the Bills,” adding that he won’t “bail on them yet.” He goes on to note that the loss to Kansas City last night was “ugly,” noting that Buffalo’s defense has had “an unimpressive start to the season.” That’s a very polite way to say that the defense has been quite poor. He thinks that the team will fix their issues. Not only do I agree with him, but I really hope that he’s right.