In a season that offered so much hope for the Buffalo Bills, fans will end the season feeling disappointed with their team's overall performance. Ending the longest active playoff drought in all of professional sports last year, drafting a new quarterback in April, and having defensive captain Kyle Williams vouch to play another season, fans unequivocally had high aspirations. Those aspirations were not met.
For me personally, the season was doomed before it even began. You've heard me rant about Nate Peterman being the worst modern-day quarterback ever, and well, having him start week one was a recipe for disaster. Sure enough, we started the season losing 47-3, the biggest blowout in the NFL this season. Even worse, our coveted defense was torn apart and our promising offensive looked deflated. Moving forward, all eyes were on rookie quarterback Josh Allen to learn the ropes and eventually take the reigns as a starter.
The following week, Allen was named the starter and performed as expected from a first-year player. He made some great plays and he made some mistakes. However, coming out of that game the bar was set high and room for growth was inevitable. Every week that followed, regardless of the outcome of the game Bills fans could leave the game sensing Allen's increasing comfortability playing professional football. He began to think more on his feet and maintain composure. Our young guy was learning how to play and we couldn't be more excited. But, in grand Buffalo Bills fashion, Allen experienced an elbow injury and was sidelined for 6 straight games shortly after he took over the starting job.
Now, I am not putting the blame on Allen for his injury; instead, I am blaming the coaching staff. Knowing you have a rookie quarterback notorious for his cannon of an arm, you must play to his strengths. The only way to develop young talent is to give them a position where they can succeed. This organization and the offensive play calling failed to do so. Instead, they let Allen spend to much time in the pocket looking for receivers and, as a result, he got sacked and hurt. That is the offensive coordinator Brian Daboll and head coach Sean McDermott's faults respectively.
At about the halfway mark of the season, it became clear that the Bills were not going to make this years playoffs. It was unfortunate but a reality. So, as a head coach, wouldn't you want to try and switch up the regime or change up the play calling style as a test to see what may work. With the season over you have nothing to lose right? Well, for these guys it seemed like they did. Nothing changed for the second half of the season. There was no variability in the play style and they looked all but defeated trying to finish up the last few games. It was a really disappointing end to the season.
To Bills fans everywhere, we all have learned to be pessimistic. We've learned to expect the lows that come with supporting this franchise. This season was nothing different than many of the upsetting ones we've experienced in the past. Let's enjoy this offseason not having to root for our guys.