RICHMOND-Since the start of the new millennium, three things have been all but guaranteed.
Death, taxes, and for at least 18/20 years, Tom Brady and the Patriots in the NFL postseason.
Brady has now departed from Foxborough and landed in Tampa Bay while other Patriots players have moved on to other franchises.
The Patriots run of the AFC East could be over, that is according to the Buffalo Bills.
Wait a second, the Buffalo Bills are in discussion? You bet. Especially after last year’s run where they surprised everyone and went to the playoffs before losing to Houston.
Fast forward to this year, the city of wings is wild with excitement of Tom Brady leaving the AFC East in hopes that they might establish themselves as the class of the division.
Not so fast. Nothing is given in the National Football League, especially with the schedule given.
Last season, the strength of schedule for the Buffalo Bills was 0.48. This season, the Bills have a SOS of 0.523. The Patriots? The toughest at 0.535.
Don’t forget Miami is also involved in the equation as they have stacked up their roster with veteran talent thanks to the culture from their head coach, Brian Flores.
The Jets? Sorry. Like the New York Knicks, they are defined as “irrelevant” in this race. They are just there for the sake of being there.
Buffalo faces five opponents who have made the playoffs last season including the two participants from this past Super Bowl.
They also will face the Dolphins, a revamped Denver Broncos team, the Vegas Raiders, an upstart Cardinals team etc.
Forgive Mayor Byron Brown for his joke on the Bills mafia celebrating in small groups for Brady’s departure due to the coronavirus, but premature celebrations tend to backfire.
In case Buffalo forgets, the Patriots have won SIX Super Bowl championships in this century. The Bills?
Not even past the Wild Card round and far from the days of the 90’s when they went to four straight title games, all ending in defeat. Wide right anyone?
Sean McDermott is a good coach. There’s no debate that he has been better than the Rex Ryan era, but to automatically assume he’s in the same class as Bill Belichick?
That ranks among the levels of stupidity including an average Joe foolishly eating the hottest wings in America knowing that his spice intake level doesn’t even exceed SriRacha sauce.
The 2020 NFL draft is approaching and while the Patriots might not be as dominant, as long as Belichick is the coach, you will get a tough match.
Some are saying the Patriots could land Deshaun Watson in a trade from the Texans or potentially draft Clemson QB Trevor Lawrence. The Bills? They have issues to fix also but they will be under a microscope.
The Bills have done a lot of talking this offseason through their fanbase. Plus, they make a legit case as they have both an effective offense and defense.
But it’s always a known fact that you should never spend money without paying your bills. Buffalo will either learn a hard lesson this year, or back up their talk.
Grab your wings and settle in. The AFC East just got interesting.