Be happy now, as it’s all downhill from here. The Buffalo Bills will have to remain sustained by memories of holding a pair of wild cards if our apocalyptic predictions come true. The typically cheery look is inherent to fans who’ve prepared for the worst just because that’s typically what happens.
If you think people are consistent, watch them cheer for sports. Take how we’re able to presume the world is about to be sucked into a black hole yet remain optimistic there’s something better on the other side.
This upcoming season could be the rare case where the team uses what it’s learned to get even better. It shouldn’t feel so odd to cheer for a franchise that employs professionals in more than the literal sense.
Can’t the Bills play the dregs again? Much early concern about 2020 revolves around facing a tougher schedule. That scenario was virtually inevitable, as the strength of opponents could almost only increase. A bigger challenge comes after a season during which they played Flint, a team of Division III college all-stars, and a confused curling squad.
They did what they could. Practicing against the league’s Ralph Wiggums might not seem to help prepare for being in class with Lisa Simpson. But a developing roster made the most out of facing a remedial lineup.
Now, the trainee enters the management program. This year’s edition will be playing both Super Bowl teams if the challenge level was set too low. Fans presume two losses in true Bills fashion. We’re going to feel pain in like eight months, and I can’t believe you’re so relaxed.
But nobody is the same. The teams they face will change during the offseason. After all, the Bills were different in 2019 than the year before. Viewing last season as a chance to prepare is the best way to develop confidence for what lies ahead. If others can improve, why can’t our favorites?
Everything working out twice seems as unlikely as a Doug Marrone decision working once. Many breaks seemed to fall into place, which created an uneasy feeling for a team used to being hit by anvils. But life is bound to work out after a few decades of torment.
Concerned Mafia members fret about Josh Allen indulging his most chaotic tendencies. We can hope he’ll learn to not be so wild. Merely calming down with age could bring more consistency. At some point, he has to stop running laps around the house as everyone born during earlier decades tries to perk up with coffee after dinner.
We can cautiously be pleased that last year’s roster is retuning in large part as a matter of percentage. All those kids expect allowances that rise above the rate of inflation. Their precocious youngsters will need new contracts simultaneously soon. But having to find a way to pay employees is the price of adding talent.
Not everyone is returning, as if that’s unusual. The inability to stop time from proceeding is management’s greatest failure. Lorenzo Alexander is like a friend made during college’s last semester you wish you had met at freshman orientation.
You’re not supposed to age! But getting older at a rate of one year per year turns out to be a reality of life and general and a sport which taxes the body in particular. At least time isn’t jumping ahead like previous seasons this century which each felt like they aged us a decade.
Could they even improve? Better Call Saul is finally back on after a playoff drought-length absence, so I believe anything is possible. Management’s previous wise moves make it fair to hope they’ll improve a roster that’s already fairly impressive. Just as the Patriots finally realize deals with Satan are only eternal on one end, Buffalo’s positive trend could continue. Please let the timing work out just this once.
There’s finally a precedent for mild success. It’s much easier to build on two recent playoff appearances than two more near-misses.
The ability to advance is an important psychological sign that reflects competence. This small but fundamentally necessary step is rare for this club. Allen is one of only eight Bills quarterbacks with a playoff record. There’s a promising beginning even if the playoff loss will smart for eternity.
This club is primed to fail and also thrive. Enjoy the fatalism paired with optimism that’s our trademark. Those tendencies don’t seem to correlate. But following guys running around after a ball doesn’t make sense to begin with, so why start now?
The feeling that life is about to collapse as you hope to win a championship only makes sense if you’ve followed a team that’s prepared you for life by crushing dreams when you believe it’ll finally get better.
It’s a matter of self-preservation to both anticipate the worst possible outcome happening and believe something worthwhile will be constructed out of the rubble. In a world where nothing obeys reason, maybe the Bills could finally build on success.
Editor’s babble: Thanks to Anthony for continuing to make us think. You can find Anthony on Twitter @AnthonyBialy.