The Buffalo Bills lost to the Denver Broncos on Monday night. Their playoff hopes took a major hit as a result. After another putrid showing on offense paired with a defensive effort that was good in spurts, but not good enough to come through with a win, the Bills have rightfully fallen down in this week’s NFL power rankings.
To start, we check in with the rankers at ESPN, who have the Bills at No. 14 this week. Alaina Getzenberg was tasked with writing about the team’s biggest remaining game, and she wrote that Buffalo’s Week 14 date with the Kansas City Chiefs is that contest. I think that I’d have said that Buffalo’s most important remaining game is “the next one on the schedule,” but maybe that’s just the coach-speak cliché machine residing deep within my psyche talking.
Mike Florio has Buffalo at No. 16 this week, down from their No. 12 ranking entering play. He writes that the Jenga tower has fallen, which is especially meaningful given offensive coordinator Ken Dorsey’s firing this morning.
Vinnie Iyer at Sporting News has Buffalo ranked No. 15 this week, down three spots from where they were entering play. He thinks that the Bills fell into a “trap game” against Denver, but I think that’s unnecessarily disrespectful of Denver’s effort, which has been outstanding overall since they allowed 70 points to the Miami Dolphins in Week 3.
Eric Edholm has Buffalo ranked No. 14 this week, down three spots from their spot entering play. He notes the entire comedy of errors that led to Buffalo’s loss last night, including the penalties, the loss of the time of possession battle, the turnovers — all of it. He notes that, while he thought the Bills would be fine to qualify for the playoffs entering the week, he has major doubts after the loss.
Pete Prisco at CBS Sports has Buffalo ranked No. 15 this week, down five spots from their spot entering play. He writes that the Bills are a .500 team that just doesn’t look like a playoff team. He questions whether “heads will roll” at the end of the season, though at least one had has already rolled.
Nate Davis at USA Today has the Bills at No. 14 this week, down five spots from their perch at the beginning of the week. He notes that this latest “gut-punch” loss feels “indicative of a season slipping away” thanks to continual self-inflicted wounds.
Matt Johnson at Sportsnaut has the Bills ranked No. 15 this week, down from their No. 12 ranking entering play. He writes that this loss “might not even be rock-bottom” for the Bills, who still have the Philadelphia Eagles, Kansas City Chiefs, Dallas Cowboys, and Los Angeles Chargers on their schedule. He doesn’t even mention the first-place Miami Dolphins, nor does he mention the two divisional foes that have already beaten Buffalo once this year.
Frank Schwab at Yahoo! Sports has the Bills ranked No. 14 this week. He writes that the 12-men-on-the-field penalty that handed Denver a second chance at a game-winning field goal was “inexcusable,” and the latest mistake in a sloppy, nightmarish season for a Buffalo team that can’t get out of its own way.
Finally, Ryan Reynolds at The 33rd Team has the Bills ranked No. 15, a full five spots lower than where they were last week. He notes that Buffalo did “everything they could to lose to the Broncos on Monday night” before calling it an “understatement” to refer to that loss as being disheartening. He also notes that quarterback Josh Allen “hasn’t looked like himself” since the team traveled to London and lost to the Jacksonville Jaguars.