Skip to contents
Why Your Team Sucks

Why Your Team Sucks 2020: Buffalo Bills

Getty Images

Some people are fans of the Buffalo Bills. But many, many more people are NOT fans of the Buffalo Bills. This 2020 Defector NFL team preview is for those in the latter group. Read all the previews so far here.

Your team: BAFFALOW Bills.

Your 2019 record: 10-6, and yet that still somehow wasn’t enough to win the East. I’m genuinely pissed on your behalf. The Bills hadn’t won a playoff game since 1995, but went to Houston in the Wild Card round and hung a 16-0 lead on the Texans that lasted all the way to the end of the third quarter. Could they finally make themselves relevant in this new century? LET’S HAVE A LOOK!

If you’re a Bills fan, your entire life is a series of sliding doors. You endure that game and spend years and years after the fact thinking about every last if…

…if Deshaun Watson hadn’t stretched to make that first two-point conversion…

…if they hadn’t held on that third down…

…if Josh Allen hadn’t fumbled the ball a minute later…

…if they could have covered DeAndre Hopkins when it truly mattered…

…if Allen hadn’t grounded the ball and then gotten sacked on 4th and 92 to blow a game-winning drive…

…if they hadn’t committed a personal foul JUST as they had gotten into field goal range in overtime…

…if they hadn’t let Houston convert a 3rd and 18 dumping the ball off to fucking Duke Johnson 10 yards behind the sticks…

…hell, if they could have covered ANY running back in overtime…

…if they could have been playing the Houston OILERS instead…

…if anyone but Joe Tessitore could have been emcee to the pain…

…if you hadn’t voluntarily taken Mick Foley-level bumps in a Nashville parking lot…

…if you had grown up in any other city…

…if your parents had loved you…

…if you could beat the Patriots ONCE, and not have to count on Matt Barkley to do the job…

…if Bethanny Johnson had only gone out with you so you didn’t end up marrying Crystal…

On the other side of every if in Buffalo is a better reality. Alas, this is the life you have. It’s a demonstrably shitty one.

Your coach: Sean McDermott, who’s already been extended through 2025. If he serves out the entirety of that contract (never assume this), McDermott will be the longest tenured coach in Buffalo since Marv Levy. That sounds impressive until you learn that the current holder of that title is Dick Jauron.

McDermott is both capable and sane, which means he can’t possibly tolerate staying in Buffalo for much longer. It’s like when some dipshit mid-major college coach wins a tourney game as a 14-seed. You know they’re leaving the second someone offers to quadruple their salary. So big congrats to McDermott on breaking his contract in January to sign with the Texans. It’s what God clearly intended.

Your quarterback: The Hope Deliverer

Really threaded the needle there. That’s Josh Allen in that clip, who threw for under 200 yards a game last season and couldn’t complete more than 60 percent of his passes. The good news is that Allen finally threw for over 300 yards in Week 1 against a barely present Jets team. The bad news is that no Bills QB had done that since 2016. Life here is nothing but awful streaks. I’m supposed to believe this man is poised to become Racist Mahomes. You know who had better stats than Josh Allen in every major category last season? Daniel Jones.

But look, you Bills fans have had to endure a century in the QB wilderness with J.P. Losman, Trent Edwards, Brian Brohm (not even Jeff!), EJ Manuel, Nathan Peterman, and the timeless Jeff Tuel. It’s understandable that you would have no concept at all of what GOOD quarterbacking looks like. Instead you see a guy complete a practice throw that Bernie Sanders could make and you’re like OH MY GOD IT’S LIKE JIM KELLY HAD MY BABY. But fear not, Vincent Gallo fanboys and fangirl. If your latest white savior turns out to be a lemon, the Bills drafted ANOTHER racist to help solidify the quarterback room.

That’s Jake Fromm, who statistically had his worst season at Georgia before the Bills gobbled him up in the fifth round. Josh Allen can run. This is a new phenomenon for Buffalo fans. They’ve never seen a QB run. They’ve never seen ANYONE run, what with their blobbed feet and what not. Fromm, thankfully, is a throwback to the kind of generic stiff you guys are used to seeing back there. So when Allen suffers a season-ending petrified labrum, and Barkley gets benched for accidentally swallowing the ball, Fromm will be there to take all the needless sacks you require. BIGOTS FROM COAST TO COAST ARE VERY EXCITED ABOUT THIS QB ROOM!

What’s new that sucks: Actual expectations. Thanks to last season, and to Tom Brady retiring to Florida, and to an offseason trade that brought Stefon Diggs aboard from the Vikings, people actually think this team not only can win the AFC East, but will. ESPN predicts it. Sporting News predicts it. USA Today predicts it. Gary from East Aurora predicts it. I just watched these motherfuckers drop three of four to close out the season and then choke in the playoffs against BILL O’BRIEN. Do you know how much you have to suck to blow a playoff game to Bill O’Brien? Bill O’Brien couldn’t hold onto a lead if he fucking keistered it. And yet this team pulled a Bill O’Brien against Bill O’Brien. No one ever learns anything up here. I swear that the Bills start off 3-1 every season and their fans are like THIS IS THE YEAR WE WIN THE EAST AND VANQUISH ALL THE BLACKS FOR GOOD! And then what happens? They fail. Again and again and again. 

Did you know this team signed Josh Norman? Who does that? Washington couldn’t find any room for Josh Norman, and Washington is a pit. Every other team also hates him. Your neighbors won’t even let Josh Norman stay in the room above their garage. Oh, but there’s always a home for worthless souls in American Siberia. Anything new in Buffalo is shit that ran its course out in the rest of the world. Give the Bills your tired arms, your poor white trash, your huddled quarterbacks yearning to breathe ice. I watch this team play and all I want to do is book a flight to Hawaii to get away from them.

Even if you guys DO win the division, what awaits you? I’ll tell you what awaits you. A wild card loss. At home. To the Patriots. After blowing a 24-0 lead. You won’t learn a goddamn thing from it. It’ll be nothing but ifs until the day you die.

What has always sucked: This is the only part of New York that thinks Andrew Cuomo is doing a good job, largely because he looks and talks like he walked out of a shitty Billy Crystal movie. This is the Ohio of New York. I have no use for it. The accents here are flatter than my kitchen counter. My wife and kids visited Buffalo on their way to Niagara Falls a year ago (they were bored), and my 11-year-old was so amused by the Buffalo accent that he STILL makes fun of it. “Yeah, I’m going in my CARR. To the BARR. It’s not very FARR.” He’s crossed the line from using it ironically to making it part of his daily vernacular, and for that I must now sell him. Like that one Youtube lady did to her kid. I’ll miss you, boy. Some of you.

#BillsMafia is the only Twitter worse than FSU Twitter. Buffalo PD deserves to eat curb eternally.

What might not suck: Take it from a Vikings fan: Diggs is incredible. He’ll tweet poorly veiled shade at Allen and demand a trade out of this shithole come Week 12. But before that happens? PURE ELECTRICITY.

Ratto says: “This is Buffalo’s moment: New England is reeling, Miami is swimming in COVID and the Jets, well, you know. But for those of you prefer your football teams detestable, there is Terry Pegula, fracker extraordinaire. He has gone from franchise savior (he outbid both Jon Bon Jovi and Donald Trump to buy the team from the Wilson family, thereby saving the team but destroying the country) to local spit-magnet even though his teams have put together three of the four best records the franchise has achieved this century. It will take more than the Patriots deflating to improve his local profile and that of his wife Kim (don’t forget they’re also tied to the continued nothingness of the Sabres, where they have hired six more coaches than seen playoff games), so there’s no pressure on coach Sean McDermott that couldn’t be matched by making a charcoal briquet into a diamond.”

HEAR IT FROM BILLS FANS!

Arlo:

The best Bills team in my living memory is one that blew a large third quarter lead in the Wild Card round to a team that blew an even larger lead in the Divisional round to the eventual Super Bowl champs.

Joe:

I watched a Bills fan piss into a cup and throw it at a kid wearing a Brady jersey. The kid was 8. How do I know he was 8? Because his dad said so, after he punched the fan in the face.

I fucking hate this place.

Jen:

Oh my god. OH MY GOD. The first year Brady is out of the AFC East, and we have huge potential, there’s A FUCKING PANDEMIC and we can’t watch them, if they even play a season. That’s it, that’s all I have to say. FUCK THIS!

Brendan:

The list of carpet samples who have tried to lead this team at the QB position is ghastly. 

Brian:

The Patriots will still beat the Bills twice this year, even if Cam Newton completes less than 10 passes in each game.  McDermott is already the team’s 3rd best coach ever, and he’s 0-6 vs. Belichick with 5 TD’s scored total in those games.   

Joe:

Diggs is pointless, Josh Allen will lose an integral body part and the brokeass Pegulas will find another embarrassingly racist way to try and distract us from this futility. Not even the absence of Tom Brady can change this.

Zach:

An at-the-time partner I was planning on marrying broke up with me a day after Nathan Peterman threw five picks in the first half against the Chargers in 2017, and I’m happy to report that I’ve managed to work though the deep depression to the point where I talk more about how Nathan Peterman still has a job in the NFL in therapy than I do about my ex.

Dano:

Bills fans think Josh Allen is the next coming of Jim Kelly when he’s got Trent Edwards written all over him.

Steve:

The Bills went 10-6 have gotten outcoached in playoff games by Bologna Marrone and Bill O’Brien. The mafia wants to name streets after McDermott because he beats the Jets and Dolphins and doesn’t dream about licking feet.

Alexander:

Super fuck Rex Ryan with his dumb-ass Bills logo wrapped pickup truck that every Bills fan thought was the absolute shit while he was the coach here. 

Casey:

We finally get Tom Brady out of the division, have a quality starting QB, a playoff caliber defense, our best chance at a Super Bowl run in almost thirty years and a global pandemic is probably going to cancel the entire season.

Slatts:

The Bills Mafia is fucking awful. The “official” facebook group for the team is essentially a giant hole filled with COVID truthers, blatant racism, and a Trump-heavy demographic of white males without college degrees who are ready to lick the sweet, sweet boots of the Pegula family every time someone remotely criticizes them. 

Tom:

Fuck Booger McFarland and double-fuck JJ Watt for making that Wild Card game unbearable to watch.

Adam:

Fuck this team with a Zubaz-patterned MAGA hat.

Matt:

God would rather smite all of humanity with a plague than allow the Bills to win the AFC East in the 21st century.

Lucas:

Anytime the Bills have a good season, I feel like I’m in a Final Destination movie.

Gilbert:

In a time of social upheaval, greater awareness of racism and bias, a time where even Roger Goodell backtracked 100% on Colin Kaepernick, the Bills decided that the move was to double up on mediocre racist white quarterbacks.

Lou:

A yearly reminder that Jimmy Haslam is laughing at the Bills here. Jim Haslam is laughing at me.

Ryan:

This psychotic, white trash fanbase deserves to have a name of, like, “Crush Pussy Field at Broseph Park” as its name. Fuck Terry Pegula with an Erlenmeyer flask filled with fracking fluid.

Steve:

It’s really the most poetic thing that the Bills finally have solid wideouts, exciting running backs, a strong defense, and Tom Brady is finally out of the league and the universe’s response to the Bills having a serious shot at the AFC East is to inflict an apocalypse virus that threatens the season. I’m sure Sean McDermott’s COVID plan is just to clap really hard in a camo mask that hides everything except his lifeless eyes.

Also your annual reminder that the Bills drafted Torell Troup one pick before Rob Gronkowski. 

Zack:

These owners fired their second failson attempt at a Sabres GM because they have no idea how to hire someone with an actual resume. These owners laid off hundreds of locals in the midst of a pandemic and recession, then fired the Sabres’ entire scouting staff when things had only gotten worse. These owners gave Sean McDermott full command of the organization after three months on the job, giving him free rein to trade away the 10th overall pick so his salivating mentor could grab Patrick Mahomes. These owners hired Rex Ryan. These owners went to Josh Allen’s Pro Day and got so giddy over his big arm that they made Beane draft him. These owners gave the head coach an extension after he turned things around with a phenomenal 25–23 record, including one of the most embarrassing playoff collapses I’ve ever seen. These owners made their fortune because they just so happened to be involved in fracking in Pennsylvania in the ‘80s, and now they run their two shiny toys the same way — hoping to stumble on success by sheer accident.

In 2016, I was home for Christmas and met the mailman outside to grab a last-minute package. I said I lived in Chicago and his eyes lit up as he asked me, “How beautiful does Trump Tower look?” Fuck these idiots and fuck this team.

Chris:

So let’s look at the list of QBs the Bills beat this year to get their first double digit win total in 20 years. Also for fun let’s see what happened to some of these QBs as the season went on or directly after playing the Bills

Win 1- Sam Darnold…Clinically Diagnosed with Mono the day after the game with the Bills, then self diagnosed as “ Seeing Ghosts“ later on in the season.

Win 2- Eli Manning… Benched after playing the Bills. Career Over

Win 3- Andy Dalton…Benched midseason on a team that was 0-11. Cut by team after season

Win 4- Marcus Mariota…Lasted exactly 1 half of the game following the loss to the Bills. Cut by team after season

Win 5- Ryan Fitzpatrick….Was neither tragic or magic in this game. Team drafted a new QB in 1st round.

Win 6- Dwayne Haskins… Making first NFL start

Win 7- Ryan Fitzpatrick. (see win 5)

Win 8- Brandon Allen…Did you even know there was a 3rd Allen who played QB last year? Cut by team after season.

Win 9- Dak Prescott… Didn’t get that long term deal. I’d like to think the Thanksgiving game is the reason.

Win 10- Devlin Hodges…Currently battling Paxton Lynch for #3 on Steelers’ depth chart…

Yep… Real proud of that 10-6 team.

Matt:

Upstate New York is full of men who spend thousands of dollars on season tickets to Bills games that they cannot remember due to chronic Labatt’s/Krupnik/Antifreeze poisoning and women who look like Rex Ryan without the dainty charm. The only difference between rural Alabama and the slice of New York between Buffalo and the Pennsylvania state line is that the people in Alabama root for a football team that’s actually won a championship.

Evan:

Josh Allen is more powerful than Bloody Mary; you just have to say his name once on Twitter to summon the worst people on Earth into your mentions. Over and over again. And if you aren’t 1000% sold on him, you’re not a true fan / in the ‘Bills mafia,’ a group of the dumbest chuds in Western New York. The team constantly panders to these idiots by talking about how ‘blue collar’ and ‘hardworking’ the team is, and how they reflect the area, as if the fans are all steelworkers or something, as opposed to a bunch of desk jockeys cosplaying as real tough guys. 

The team is on the same path as the Bears (great defense, shaky quarterback) but no one wants to admit it.

Andy:

Honestly, it would have been a lot more tolerable if the Bills had just gone quietly after shitting the bed and giving up 19 straight points in 12 minutes.  I would have gotten off relatively easy, in fact!  No particularly memorable moments of agony to suffer through!  Just a generic, forgettable collapse.  I could get over that.  Hell, as a Bills fan that’s about the best you can hope for.

But no.  No, they just had to claw their way back and force OT, only to set up Deshaun Watson’s goddamn houdini act that seared yet another indelible moment of anguish into this Bills fan’s already tormented mind.  I’m a monumental idiot for sticking with this team.


I moved away from western New York eight years ago and you’d think that I would’ve adopted my new local team by now to escape this hell, but the problem is that I moved to DC.  Astoundingly the Bills are still the lesser of two evils.

In closing, fuck Gregg Williams from here to eternity.

Anon:

Fuck the Buffalo Bills with the rusty anchor of Terry Pegula’s third yacht. Lucille Bluth has less contempt for her workers.

Bills Mafia has been given a national audience for shitting their pants while unconscious on camera. At least when your skull disintegrated, it wasn’t because you hurled yourself through an ironing board before the Patriots skulk off with a 35-point victory. Fuck these morons, and fuck every national outlet for legitimizating them. 

I almost died during Rob Gronkowski’s rookie year, where he scored two touchdowns against the Bills. I blacked out in the first quarter and regained consciousness just in time to witness the dude in the row in front of me piss himself, gladly.  Later that afternoon, I ran onto the interstate afterwards to go pee while my Canadian passport was still left in my buddy’s car, thank god I made it back in time, before puking my brain out at the Walden Galleria. 

It’s been about 10 years since almost dying on the interstate, barefoot and cold. I have made much better decisions in my life, in my career, but the Bills will always be the worst.

Our best player of the late 2000s was Marshawn Lynch before the Bills traded him for a round of suicide wings at Duff’s and a pitcher of their stalest beer, all because C.J. Spiller. 

Fuck Frank Wycheck and Kevin Dyson. That ball went forward.

Nicholas:

At some point years ago, when Buffalo was starting to realize that the Bills’ epic playoff drought was more than just some hiccup that could be quick-fixed with a band-aid, I began having a little vision: I imagined that I would be a local tour guide, many years into the future. I’m escorting a group of tourists – say about two dozen of them or so – around the city, and I come to this elaborate, 10-story tall statue of pristine white marble. The statue is of a man in a baseball hat, a puffed-out Buffalo Bills ski jacket, and blue jeans, and it’s carrying a clipboard. I get emotional and choke up explaining the significance of man depicted by the statue…

“This man…” (I remove my Buffalo Bills beanie and hold it across my heart…) “…Is the greatest football coach of all time!”

“Really?” a tourist asks. “How many titles did he win?” 

“He never won a title! He broke off the worst playoff drought Buffalo had ever seen! He took the team to a 7-9 record and won the last Wild Card spot on a technicality when the Bengals defeated the Ravens with an unlikely touchdown at the last second!” 

I felt like a prophet the year the playoff drought finally ended because that little vision of mine was only wrong by two victories.

Joe:

This year The Buffalo Bills will absolutely win the Super Bowl. Not because they are a surprisingly complete team. Not because I think Josh Allen will make that superstar jump. Not because God is good and we (as a sports city) have suffered more than most. No way. Their imminent victory will be one final absentee ballot marked “Fuck You” from this ratshit year, to stillbirth across my feet. 

Trump will have been self-appointed “President-Big-Dick-Huge-Hands 4 LYFE” for roughly two weeks when my miraculously virus free Buffalo Bills take the field in early February. On the first snap, Josh Allen will roll out, hurdle a tipped over corpse strapped to a ventilator, then take it to the fucking house. I’ll break my hand punching the ceiling with excitement. 

This will happen thirty more times, or until everyone gets bored. Then the refs will roll the rest of the Bucs back to the hospitals and morgues where their remains can be studied, donated, or cremated. And this is how Buffalo will finally beat Tom Brady. This is how Buffalo will finally win a championship. With an asterisk, during a pandemic. With a team that might have done so by virtue of its own merit any other year.

Buffalo will cheer. Then look around and notice the rot wafting up and across our victory. We’ll know that this how it had to happen. At the end of the world. And that it’s meaningless. 

Then, a month later, the clouds will part. 

Corona will be cured. Black lives will matter. The votes will be recounted and Trump will choke to death on a filet-o-fish. All our dead grandparents will ride down from heaven on our favorite childhood pets and give us, warm, loving hugs. The world will cautiously, then confidently, come into bloom. A beautiful, Technicolor dream that everyone knew was possible, if we just made it so. Hand, clasped in hand, we’ll stand together and take one final caustic glance back on this sick joke of a year, then look forward with optimism forever. We’ll all exhale. It will truly be bliss.

And then. 

And then. In late summer of 2021, when the world is spinning to the tune of that new normal. When everything is better, or on its way there. When it finally feels okay to start talking about something as trivial as football again. I’ll be in an airport bar wearing my Buffalo Bills “Championship” T-shirt un-ironically. Everyone will chuckle and think it’s a joke, but it won’t be. I’ll mean it. I’ll mean every fucking bit of it. Every molecule. I’ll take that cheap win, and pull its misery into myself because I’ll know It’ll be all that I will ever get out of this fucking team. And it will be infinite bile in my mouth. 

I’ll wish, with everything that I have, that a nuke had just knocked our planet off its axis when there was still a chance for such things. I’ll mourn the times when such an end was still possible, likely, or assured. Plague, pestilence and all that good stuff.

By opening day, Buffalo, NY will be nuclear capable. By the time we are mathematically eliminated from playoffs in mid November, vapor trails will be traced backwards from the irradiated ruins of the world’s greatest cities to the east coast of Lake Erie. Buffalo will have taken its winter worldwide. 

The pale horse will have no rider but instead a helmet adorned with the stain of a blood red buffalo in dramatic profile. And also blue and red fucking piping up the side of his legs. 

Come and see. And I saw. 

Fuck me through a folding table and straight down to the center of the earth.

Submissions for the NFL previews are closed. Next up: New England Patriots.