Autopsy Report: ‘Same old Bills’ officially dead after big win over Falcons

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Well, well, well… look who’s still sitting on top of the AFC East after the first quarter of the NFL regular season. Most of BillsMafia probably woke up Monday morning with a strange feeling of living in an alternate universe. A place where the Buffalo Bills have a one game lead over the New England Patriots after four games into the regular season.

The Bills 23-17 win over the Falcons in Atlanta on Sunday was as much of a signature statement as you will see in the NFL. Although the final score indicated a close game, Buffalo dominated in a way they haven’t been able to for many years; they went into a hostile environment and beat one of the most talented teams in the NFL.

The only thing left behind in this autopsy report is the carcass of the collective Falcons who were left for dead on a scorched field in their new stadium on Sunday.

Photo from and Associated Press.

Here are a few reasons why it’s time for Bills fans to come out of the dark and into the light after being tormented into submission for nearly two decades:

  • This Bills team continues to prove every week they emphatically reject the mantra of “same old Bills” with their actions, not their words.
  • Reaction by current players to comments made by Jim Kelly about the national anthem protest recently indicate this team is motivated to break away from the past and view the past as a hindrance to their future.
  • LeSean McCoy’s reaction toward reporters in the locker room after the game reveals a team with a chip on their shoulder and something to prove… to everyone.
  • Nothing about this team resembles the quitters we saw on the field for way too many years.
  • McDermott and Beane continue to show great acumen in selecting players who not only fit their scheme, but their vision of the psychological make-up they seek in players.
  • For the first time since the Marv Levy era there is a focus on intangibles over physical talent as a priority in assembling a team.
  • Instead of wallowing in self-congratulatory behavior, this team remains as even-keeled emotionally after a huge win as any Bills team we’ve seen since the Super Bowl years.

And that’s just for starters. As many folks reading this know, the focus on intangibles is something I begged for years to see from a Bills coach and front office. In an era where players make life-altering amounts of money, honing a winner requires the ability to find those players who are motivated by the game itself, not chiefly for what it provides in terms of a celebrity lifestyle.

ATLANTA, GA – OCTOBER 01: Head coach Sean McDermott of the Buffalo Bills celebrates beating the Atlanta Falcons at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on October 1, 2017 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

Finally, a head coach and front office that places as much value on developing team chemistry as I believe is necessary to be successful in this era of professional football. I’ll let the stats guys pour over the analytics of the game while I focus on my own area of expertise… analyzing human behavior.

And oh my… get ready… I’ll have a lot more to post about team chemistry as we move forward. In the mean time, put away your “same old Bills” mantra. It’s time to  walk outside our man/woman caves and let the sun shine in.

Editor’s babble: Be insufferable this week, BillsMafia. We’ve agonized long enough. If you can stand the nauseating optimism, you can follow me on Twitter @RobynMundyWYO. 

About Robyn Mundy

Robyn Mundy is Editor-in-Chief of the BillsMafia blog at She's a retired oncology nurse & psychotherapist who loves to write about her life-long passion for the Buffalo Bills, and occasionally something of clinical or social relevance. Robyn lives with her husband Gary and their dogs in the foothills of the Big Horn Mountains in Wyoming. Robyn is also a proud founding sponsor. Follow her on Twitter at @RobynMundyWYO.

11 Replies to “Autopsy Report: ‘Same old Bills’ officially dead after big win over Falcons”

  1. It definitely does not feel like the same ol’ Bills. After beating the defending NFC champs on the road, I feel if the Bills defense shows up like it has been throughout the first four games of the season that the Bills have a chance in every game.

    So far, the offense reminds me of the Flutie led offenses of the late 90’s (just doing enough to win). I’m fine with that for now. Rick Dennison is still trying to figure out the best ways to use Taylor and the team is getting used to a new offensive scheme, so I know it’s a work in progress. At some point, the offense is going to need to score 30 points or more to win a game (Patriots come to mind).

    In the offseason and even in game one (Patriots vs Chiefs), people in the media were making a joke about the Patriots poaching the Bills for good players. Yesterday, I heard callers making jokes about how the scheme to have the Patriots take our bad players has finally paid off. Gilmore has not looked good so far in New England. Looks like Gillislee is better suited as a backup RB.

    It’s nice to look up at the standings and not only see the Bills in first place in the division, but also, seeing the Patriots in third place. Go Bills!

  2. I think it’s more than plausible there’s something different about this team…but I will hold off using terms like ‘officially’. If the Bills show up…or should I say don’t show up next week against the Bungles…well, that’s exactly the type of thing I’d expect from the same ol’ Bills. Think back to a huge win against a great 12-4 Packers team to position themselves nicely for a shot at the playoffs…and then follow it up with a loss to the 3-13 Raiders. Lose next week to the Bengals and you undo a lot of the beauty of yesterday.

    It does seem like the Bills are actually a good team…but I am hesitant to crown them as such. They have been the beneficiary of a number of questionable calls that could easily put them at 1-3 instead of 3-1. BUT, good teams do usually find their way to be on the right side of those calls… Anyhow, there is reason for optimism right now, but I’m gonna hold off on doing cannon balls into the kool-aid pool for now.

    • The Bengals game is not a gimmie. Since changing OC’s, the Bengals offense scored 24 points last week and 31 this week. The combo of Dalton and Green still worry me as Green is able to high point the ball very well and is a deep threat. The Bengals game is a winnable game, but I just hope these Bills are not like the Bills of old and lose to a team they are expected to win against, especially after beating two teams the Bills were expected to lose against. Win this one and my confidence will keep growing in McBeane.

  3. Love this little blurb about Brady and the Pats: “Tom Brady is being asked to do way too much. He was hit seven times and sacked three more in another 300-yard game. Brady engineered two beautiful fourth quarter drives to tie this game up, but at other times all the pressure appeared to be rushing him into some missed open throws. New England has no explosive element in the run game (80 yards total) and a defense that can’t get stops. At a certain point, Brady is going to buckle under all this weight.”

  4. I agree the Bengals game isn’t a gimmie…but it is a game I thought they would have a chance in even when I thought they weren’t very good. If the Bills are no longer doomed to be a sub-mediocre team…these are the type of games they have to win.

  5. Great win by the Bills yesterday! I haven’t seen this much enthusiasm at the Bills Backers of Brandon since we joined in 09. And yes I took a few big gulps of the koolaid.

    On another note, I just read that Gilmour was benched but had to come back in the game because his replacement got hurt. Lots of finger pointing in the Pats secondary. I’m not gloating, ah… Yes I am.

    A nice win by McD and staff!!

    • Gary,

      It’s the same things with Gilmore, communication issues. I thought it was due to Rex’s overly complicated defensive schemes, but it looks like Gilmore has a hard time understanding assignments and where he and other secondary players are supposed to be covering. Plus, he continues to take dumb penalties at the worst times.

  6. if you remember the 4 and 0 start under “dick” jauron in 2008 you know it is too early for celebration.
    however at this point they could be in contention for the division if they can beat the patriots once.
    the Bills are starting to remind me of the KC chiefs which appear to be the team to beat in the AFC.
    if other teams can exploit the patriots defense there is a good chance the bills could wind up with the better record.
    with that win yesterday the bills are in contention not just for the playoffs, but for the AFC!!!!

  7. Slow down Anello, and back away from the punch bowl. The Patriots will correct their direction and get back in control.

    It is good to see that the teams that looked tough/impossible on the schedule are struggling some. Hopefully the Bills still are getting wins by the halfway point, but some of these first games could have gone the other way.

  8. “but some of these first games could have gone the other way.”

    Agreed. It’s interesting that they’re doing well, but they’re a few plays and/or calls away from 1-3 too. Good teams tend to find a way to be on the right side of those, but are the Bills more lucky or good? Currently they’re a bit of both…but if the luck runs out, I don’t know they’re so good they can keep rolling anyhow. On the bright side, nobody, especially in the AFC, seems to be all that great either. On the not so bright side, they were 4-2 last year and still managed 7-9. But I do think the Bills were a playoff team the last two years with good coaching and the D performing up to their potential.

  9. Good morning…

    Well we all have to agree that there is something different about this team. Their attitude, motivation and chemistry is all different and for the good.

    I can’t remember the last time I saw the Bills beat 2 quality teams back to back–it has to be during the SB run.

    Make no mistake these Bills are real and they are out to prove the naysayers wrong… My feeling is that the players are thrilled the way the Bills are handling Dareus and the coaching staff has gained their respect.

    Next up the Bengals, it won’t be an easy game as they seem to be gaining some momentum and hopefully the Bills won’t be looking ahead to their off week. They just have to keep pressure on Dalton and he will make mistakes…