‘x’ Marks the Spot as Buffalo Bills Get to Dig for Playoff Treasure

Photo from buffalonews.com.

Is 16 games not enough for you?  You’re so demanding.  They let teams with enough wins keep playing, which is finally good news for the Buffalo Bills.  I’m still nervous out of habit. But there’s no fear of something ruining our football buzz: the league can’t take away the x in front of the name.

Waiting all day for Carrie Underwood to stop singing was a special burden.  It’s a novel experience hoping that Cris Collinsworth pipes down about your particular favorite club.  He had to take a break from thanking his preferred supernatural deity for granting the unearned joy of basking in Mike Tomlin coaching to note the Bills gritted out victory in their first Sunday night game since dinosaurs roamed Pittsburgh.

The late game was worth the delay.  We’re usually done rooting for football by dinner.  It was nearly midnight in the eastern time zone before the Bills guaranteed themselves a playoff appearance.  Productive people were starting to doze off.  As a tradeoff, the wait is over early, overall.

There’s time left on the season even if it took all but six seconds to clinch.  The last two games are merely about placement, which is like getting to see how much powdered sugar you get on waffles.

Photo of QB Andy Dalton from buffalonews.com.

The Bills know they made the tournament well before Christmas. That sure is an upgrade over waiting until their season ended.  Sliding into the playoffs was best way to finish 2017.  And this year was even better.  They didn’t even need Andy Dalton’s help, although you can still donate to the Buffalo hero’s foundation. 

Looking at the schedule to locate one more win is for amateurs.  Focused teams know each game unfolds differently.  Fans notice, as well, and pretending to help is why we shout advice.  Anyone checking off wins or losses beforehand may as well just read Netflix program descriptions instead of bingeing.  All that free time spent not watching television creates a horrifying vacuum.

The Steelers are mean even if their record is a bit below historical standards.  Using a fight song by cheese kingpins Styx doesn’t help.  Is REO Speedwagon too metal?

An awareness of everything that’s ever happened explains why you can’t just check the score.  The vicissitudes of each possession create an excuse for watching every single game.  If your family wanted to spend time with you, they’d learn to love football the same way you do.  Common interests unite us.

Winning one out of three sounded manageable.  But particular outings unfold in a manner which cannot be explained by percentages.  Seventeen points might be sufficient if your foe is down to a passer who goes by Duck.  Treat each individual outings as special just like Sesame Street taught us.  I guess Grover was talking about humans and not games, but the principle applies.

Everyone is willing to chip in.  Countless volunteers offered to donate a shoulder to Tre White.  The league’s best cornerback was also one of Buffalo’s biggest gainers, which is one way of noting the offense could be a little more productive.

Four quarters of offense would be the easiest way to make more than a graceful single playoff appearance.  Someone in quality control write down that Josh Allen is eligible to throw on any snap by NFL rule.

Photo of OC Brian Daboll from WIVB.com.

The mind of a coordinator is a fascinating place to inhabit.  We can only ponder what Brian Daboll sees from the booth to keep smashing the ball in a long goal-to-go situation.  Is it possible to move him up higher?

Daboll was apparently sitting on a light tower when he figured out how to get Tyler Kroft open in the end zone.  The Steelers forgot about him. Then again, so did I.  

A little more ball security would help a lot.  Fans went from praising the single-willed Devin Singletary for the superhuman cut he made to cursing life for not protecting the ball.  Nobody in Buffalo called the cops for a noise violation because everyone swore.  But the night ended with cheering until Mister Sun reappeared.

The NFL wanted everyone to see it, so the side may as well enjoy showing off.  This franchise is not used to being pursued.  A minimum fifth seed cannot be caught by pesky teams below.  As a reminder, this is the Buffalo Bills in question.

Adept rosters treat vain attempts to tie as cute.  Jordan Poyer and Levi Wallace created a three-way tie for the best Bills end zone reception with Kroft.  Stressful moments worked out, which makes sense since 2019 feels like residing on a weird alternate comic book planet.

Prominence is here.  I checked again for accuracy before I submitted this column because it still doesn’t seem real.  Winning during prime time in Pittsburgh served as a holiday sequel to ruining Thanksgiving for the Cowboys.  Making notable teams sad is fun.  The Bills should do it all the time.

Buffalo doesn’t have one of those pathetic sides who goes more than one season without a postseason appearance.  This drought has been interminable.  A poor Bills fan born in February 2018 has never experienced a playoff game.  The seventeenth game is for you, kid.

Editor’s babble: We’re all still pinching ourselves while the team quietly prepares to invade Gillette Stadium. Thanks to Anthony Bialy for his always-entertaining contributions to our blog. You can find Anthony on Twitter @AnthonyBIaly.

About Anthony Bialy

Anthony Bialy recently moved back to Buffalo from New York City and acts like he never left. He thinks "Buffalo 66" is biographical and considers it a crime against mankind that Steve Tasker is not in the Hall of Fame. He likes getting Tim Hortons on the way to get Labatt Blue. Follow him on Twitter at @AnthonyBialy.