Droughts Ended

AFC Wild Card

(6) Buffalo Bills at (3) Jacksonville Jaguars

Bills: They are finally here playing postseason football for the first time since 1999. It’s been some long and hard years for the Buffalo Bills, but their season now continues. They got off to such a strong start when the Patriots were still trying to figure things out and their biggest mistake of the year was when they decided to bench a healthy Tyrod Taylor for an unproven Nathan Peterman and look how that panned out for them. I’ll still never understand the concepts of Sean McDermott’s decision making with that choice and look what happens when they decide to play Tyrod again, they win games and quite frankly, they aren’t the sixth seed in the AFC without number five under center and they’d be preparing for the draft right now if they had continued to stick with Peterman. This Bills offense goes through one guy and that’s LeSean McCoy, who’s been their best player. Though he only scored six touchdowns this year, he showed flashes at times of the guy he was when he was still with the Philadelphia Eagles. In their finale against the Dolphins, he went down with an ankle injury and was carted off the field. The Bills defense hasn’t been the greatest, but they’ve allowed 13 touchdown passes this season and they can get a turnover when it’s necessary. They’re here and on Sunday afternoon, they’ll face the surprising AFC South champion Jacksonville Jaguars.

Jaguars: Next to the Los Angeles Rams, this has been another one of the best stories of the 2017 NFL season. The talent has been there and all they’ve needed to do was simply put it all together and they have! When I watch them, I often see a strong resemblance to the 2007 Jacksonville Jaguars, the last time they made the playoffs and the similarities are there. They run the football and they have a franchise back in Leonard Fournette, something they haven’t had since the days of Maurice Jones-Drew, they take care of the football, Bortles is serviceable like David Garrard was and they have a very good defense, the best in the league, let’s just get that out the way. This team is built to go on the road into a cold environment and play teams like Pittsburgh and New England because they’re physical, they run the football, they stop the run and they have a secondary that match ups well with receivers across the board. When I watched their opening game of the season against Houston and how they were able to record ten sacks, I knew this could be a special defense. They do everything extremely well. They have a front four that makes life miserable for you, the linebackers are good and they have a secondary that can get the takeaways. This team deserves to be here and they will host their frist playoff game for the first time since 1999.

Bills Player To Watch: Kelvin Benjamin– When the Bills decided to make a move at the trade deadline, this showed me that they were ready to make a push for the playoffs. You traded Sammy Watkins during the off-season and filled that number one receiver spot on your depth chart with a very good red-zone target. This is why you got him, for the playoffs. Use your weapons.

Jaguars Player To Watch: Marcel Dareus– The one time Buffalo Bill was traded earlier in the season to Jacksonville to give them the best defensive line in all of football that consists of Calais Campbell, Malik Jackson, Marcel Dareus and Yannick Ngakoue. He knows the ins and outs of this Bills offense and how they want to move the ball down the field. I know he’s ready for this game.

Final Analysis: Whoever thought that this would be one of the four Wild Card games on tap this weekend? Two teams that have snapped their playoff droughts will be facing each other for a chance to move onto the divisional round next weekend. Will Shady McCoy play? He injured his ankle last week against the Dolphins and he was carted off the field and that’s never a good sign. Even McCoy at 70 percent or so is huge for the Bills, as he’s the straw that stirs the drink on this Bills offense and is also key in the passing game. I’ve been raving about this Jags defense all season long and everyone will have the chance to watch them and see just how good they are on Sunday afternoon.

Prediction: Jaguars 24 Bills 19