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SB Nation Reacts Week 13 results — Has Bills Mafia carved a deeper trench?

The Buffalo Bills are dead-set on making their fans proficient surfers in 2023

New York Jets v Buffalo Bills Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images

Very little has gone well for the Buffalo Bills, with their fans hoping for far more at this point in the 2023 NFL season. While quarterback Josh and wide receiver Stefon Diggs’ on-field chemistry has thrived through much of the team’s first 12 games, their latest opponents have begun to clamp down just enough to keep Diggs’ numbers in the realm of ordinary.

Interim offensive coordinator Joe Brady and Allen have both been up to the task, choosing other receiving outlets and finding meaningful success against defenses that sell out to stop Buffalo’s alpha receiver. Still, an offense functioning in a less-than-typical nature compared to Allen’s career has played into the Bills’ overall record of 6-6. That’s believed to have played a significant role in head coach Sean McDermott’s dismissal of now-former offensive coordinator Ken Dorsey. Through the ebb and flow, Bills Mafia has tread water within the team’s constant crescendo of waves. But have we reached a new low, with Buffalo’s season on the brink following a gut-wrenching overtime loss to the Philadelphia Eagles?

Surprisingly? No. Recall, fan confidence saw a fortuitous rebound following the team’s Week 11 victory over the New York Jets — Joe Brady’s first game calling plays for the Bills. It seems that while only 23% of Bills Mafia believes the team is headed in the right direction, there’s more belief in the team now that Dorsey isn’t running the offense.

It’s right to be frustrated with the Buffalo Bills this season. Nearly every time the team wins the fan base over, that loyalty is rewarded by having their hearts ceremonially ripped out. Against the Eagles, the Bills were primed to leave South Philly winners of two in a row against some of the best defenses in the NFL this season. Instead, the defense once again couldn’t hold up in crunch time, at one point allowing quarterback Jalen Hurts to pull off three touchdowns in four plays. Despite Josh Allen giving his team the lead late, the defense couldn’t prevent Philly from making a 59-yard kick for the ages. Instead of allowing the offense a chance to respond in kind with 20 clock seconds and a timeout, Sean McDermott chose to kneel out the remainder of regulation.

Yes, it’s fair to be down on this year’s Bills, especially after the head coach refused to allow his best player the opportunity to end the game on their terms. Forcing overtime was the wrong move, no matter the weather, the fact that kicker Tyler Bass had missed two prior field goals, and certainly so with the Eagles having captured momentum on offense. Throwing away chances with the ball in hand, opting for the luck of a coin flip and far too many other variables to go their way is not sustainable if they hope to play in the postseason. Should decisions like these continue, McDermott may find a large group of fans kneel the ball on his tenure moving forward.

Will the Bills win on the road next weekend against the Kansas City Chiefs? They have no choice. If they leave Missouri winners, it’s almost assured fan confidence will be headed back out of that trough between waves.

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