clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Taking stock of Buffalo Bills’ opponents heading into Week 2

With one week of regular-season football complete, what do the Bills’ opponents bring to the table?

The NFL has arrived in full force and Week 1 was must-watch television for football fans all across the country. Fans were looking for answers to months of offseason questions, predictions and hot takes.

I wanted to take a look at the Buffalo Bills’ opponents after their first game to see how they fared. With the Bills facing one of the hardest schedules in the league, do some of their opponents look weaker than projected? Or will these teams that flew under the radar now present issues for Buffalo? Let’s find out.

Week 2

Las Vegas Raiders: Week 1 outcome — 17-16 win vs. Denver Broncos

With head coach Josh McDaniels, quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, and wide receiver Jakobi Myers, this squad looks awfully familiar to teams the Bills have faced up in New England over the years. They were able to grind out a win as a road underdog against the Broncos, but they got banged up. Health will play a role as they play Buffalo in Week 2. If they are fully healthy, I don’t see them as contenders, but should still be in most of their games. Buffalo is rightly favored in their matchup, and should bounce back and pick up the win in Week 2.

Week 3

Washington Commanders: Week 1 outcome — 20-16 win vs. Arizona Cardinals

Ron Rivera and company toughed out a win against what was predicted to be one of the worst teams in the NFL in the Cardinals. The offense was lackluster at best but Washington’s defense came to play. They had three sacks, recovered two fumbles and had multiple interceptions dropped by their secondary — all without star pass rusher Chase Young. If they had a capable offense, this team would be much scarier. But until they find it, this should be another win for the Buffalo Bills.

Week 4

Miami Dolphins: Week 1 outcome — 36-34 win vs. Los Angeles Chargers

I’m stealing a line from legendary Buffalo Sabres broadcaster Rick Jeanneret: “These guys are good, scary good.” Bills fans or any team in the AFC won’t want to hear this, but after watching this game, the Dolphins put the league on notice. They look even better than last year. Tua Tagovailoa is healthy and stronger, helping him deliver the football all over the field. Allen, Diggs, and company will need to be better than their one-touchdown performance against the Jets. The Buffalo defense will need to step up and maybe steal a possession or two if they want to compete in this game. I can’t wait for this matchup and hopefully Buffalo takes over first in the division at game’s end.

Week 5

Jacksonville Jaguars: Week 1 outcome — 31-21 win vs. Indianapolis Colts

It doesn’t get any easier when the Bills travel to London to play the Jags in Week 5. Trevor Lawrence and Calvin Ridley are going to light the league on fire this year. This squad reminds me a lot of the 2020 Bills, Stefon Diggs’ first season. Their offense was able to put up 31 points even though they weren’t perfect, and the defense has enough talent to be in the top half of the league’s units. I think they can be a top-five team in the NFL and the Bills will have to find a way to contain another explosive offense. We are only into Week 5 and things could get messy for the Bills facing off against another contender if they don’t get it together in time. The days of seeing the Jags on the schedule and marking an easy win are over.

Week 6

New York Giants: Week 1 outcome — 40-0 loss vs. Dallas Cowboys

Buffalo comes home from London and gets some Sunday night primetime football. Brian Daboll returns to Buffalo. Many fans I am sure wish he was still here to help work some magic with quarterback Josh Allen, but instead now we get to watch Daniel Jones become a serviceable QB. After a tough couple of weeks, this game seems like a softball game the Bills should win. That being said, I’d never count Daboll out. He’ll have his guys ready to go and I’m sure he will help the defense with their game plan against Josh Allen.

Week 7

New England Patriots: Week 1 outcome — 25-20 loss vs. Philadelphia Eagles

Even though New England retired Brady’s number at halftime, Brady’s come-from-behind magic didn’t rub off on Mac Jones as he failed to lead a comeback — even though he had an opportunity to win the game at the end. These Patriots don’t look elite like years past, but do look better than last year. A quality defense, a serviceable Mac Jones and big-brained Bill Belichick should be enough to keep this team in every game. I still think Josh Allen will continue his dominance over the Patriots in Foxborough, but I don’t expect the Patriots to get blown out in any games this year.

Week 8

Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Week 1 outcome — 20-17 win vs. Minnesota Vikings

Tampa was able to force three turnovers against a strong Vikings squad as they squeaked out a three-point victory. Tampa’s defense looked very “bend don’t break” as the Vikings gained a ton of yards through the air, but it still wasn’t enough. Buffalo will have to have this game against a non-elite NFC team with how daunting their schedule is down the stretch stacking a wins here is huge.

Week 9

Cincinnati Bengals: Week 1 outcome — 24-3 loss vs. Cleveland Browns

Bills fans will have waited months and months to get their revenge against the team that eliminated them from the playoffs last year. Joe Burrow and the Bengals didn’t start well getting beat in a muck of a game in Cleveland. Burrow is no stranger to opening-day duds as he threw four interceptions against the Pittsburgh Steelers last year to start the season, and they still finished as a top team in the league. Cincinnati should round into form by this game and will give the Bills all they can handle.

Week 10

Denver Broncos: Week 1 outcome — 17-16 loss vs. Las Vegas Raiders

Denver looks as if they’re still trying to figure out their Russell Wilson project, as the team stuttered on offense all day against the Raiders to open the season. If the Broncos continue to average less than 20 points per game, they shouldn’t be a threat to the Bills in November.

Week 11

New York Jets: Week 1 outcome — 22-16 OT win vs. Buffalo Bills

I don’t like writing about the Jets having our number to Bills Mafia, but that’s what I have to do. Robert Saleh knows what he’s doing against the Bills as they’ve averaged less than 20 points per game over their last eight matchups against the Jets. The question will be: Does Zach Wilson make it this far into the season or does Buffalo face a different QB? Either way, this match up now reminds me of the Baltimore Ravens-Steelers battles in the AFC North over the years. My hopes are higher for Buffalo without Rodgers and they need to take revenge in this divisional matchup.

Week 12

Philadelphia Eagles: Week 1 — 25-20 win vs. Patriots / Week 2 34-28 win vs. Vikings

The only team to play two games so far this season, the Eagles showcased their run game in Week 2 against the Vikings. Teams still can’t stop quarterback Jalen Hurts on the QB sneak at the goal line. Buffalo’s linebackers will be tested to see if they can contain or slow down their rushing attack. Maybe a possible rift between star wide receiver A.J. Brown and QB Jalen Hurts as they were seen arguing on the sideline Thursday night. Definitely a story line worth following. This game is Thanksgiving weekend, so lets hope the Bills give us a reason to be thankful and take out last season’s NFC Super Bowl representative.

Week 13

Bye Week

A much-needed break. Time to get healthy and get ready to grind out a tough end-of-season schedule.

Week 14

Kansas City Chiefs: Week 1 outcome — 21-20 loss vs. Detroit Lions

Pat Mahomes looked mortal in the Thursday night NFL season opener. Missing his top target tight end Travis Kelce, his other weapons didn’t step up their game to help the Super Bowl MVP. Drops all over the place slowed this offense down. Buffalo has bested the Chiefs in the regular season three of their last four meetings and will need to do it again if they have the one seed in the AFC in their sights.

Week 15

Dallas Cowboys: Week 1 outcome 40-0 win vs. New York Giants

The Cowboys embarrassed their division rival in the season opener. Anyone who had Dallas’ Defense and special teams for fantasy football woke up Monday morning with a big grin on their face. Buffalo will have to deal with a tough pass rush and if Spencer Brown, Dion Dawkins and Josh Allen aren’t on the same page, we could be in for a long game.

Week 16

Los Angeles Chargers: Week 1 outcome — 36-34 loss vs. Miami Dolphins

I said it earlier, their past game could go down as a game of the year in the NFL. Both teams lit each other up. J.C. Jackson had an inexcusable pass interference call going into halftime that gifted the Dolphins three points, which hurts when you lose by two. The devil is in the details and mistakes like that will kill an elite team. Austin Ekeler picked up where he left off last year being a wrecking ball on the ground. Even if that gets contained, Justin Herbert will throw all over the field on you. Again this is a team you have to beat if you want the one seed in the AFC. After Buffalo’s week one performance, I don’t feel good with this matchup.

Week 17

New England Patriots: Week 1 outcome — 25-20 loss vs. Philadelphia Eagles

Tua and the Dolphins are looking to beat Bill Belichick for the fifth time in a row in Week 2, and by Week 17 Buffalo could be looking to do the same thing. Buffalo is 6-1 in their last seven matchups against New England and would have the record if not for hurricane-force winds in December of 2021 in Buffalo. I expect the dominance to continue as long as Josh Allen wears a Buffalo Bills jersey. We have 20 years of payback to give them and we’re not letting up any time soon.

Week 18

Miami Dolphins: Week 1 outcome — 36-34 win vs. Los Angeles Chargers

The last few seasons, Week 18 has been relatively meaningless for the Buffalo Bills. I expect that to change this year with Miami being a powerhouse of a team. After Week 1 they’re favored to win the division. By Week 18 hopefully the Bills have proved they are the team to beat and with a win can capture their fourth-straight division title.

After watching the action in Week 1, how do you think the Bills will fare the rest of the way? Are you nervous? Was Week 1 an anomaly or will the Bills struggle through the rest of the season? Let me know in the comments below!