Next Week Could Be One For The Ages In Orchard Park
The Buffalo Bills are getting ready to close out the 2021 regular season (in 2022) against the New York Jets.
The game kicks off at 4:25, which is the first 4 pm timeslot for a Bills home game since 2009, and it's also one that carries importance for the Bills in terms of playoff positioning.
The Bills win the AFC East with a victory today over the Jets. They also win the division if the New England Patriots lose to the Miami Dolphins.
Unfortunately, the Bills can not go any higher than the 3 seed in the AFC Playoffs, since the Kansas City Chiefs beat the Denver Broncos on Saturday, which guarantees themselves a top-2 seed. Since the Tennessee Titans already hold a tiebreaker over the Bills, that means the best Buffalo can do is the 3 seed.
The Bills get the 3 seed if the Cleveland Browns beat the Cincinnati Bengals and the Bills beat the Jets. Buffalo cannot get the 5 seed unless they lose and the Chargers-Raiders game is a tie, but can move down to 6 or 7 with a loss and New England win.
I know, it's all very confusing, but the easiest thing to root for is a Bills win and a Patriots loss, because that guarantees the Bills at least one home playoff game this month.
The Bills hosted two playoff games last year as the 2 seed, but both of those games only featured a few thousand people inside Highmark Stadium. The season before that, the Bills went on the road against Houston, and in 2017, the Bills went on the road against Jacksonville.
If the Bills win today against the New York Jets, they will host their first full-capacity playoff game since December 28th, 1996...that's right, over 25 years ago.
The Bills quarterback for that game? Jim Kelly.
The Bills lost 30-27 against the Cinderella story, Jaguars, who made it to the AFC title game.
It's crazy to picture 1996 being the Bills last full-capacity home playoff game. Next week's (hopeful) home playoff game would be one for the ages. It would be so fulfilling for Bills fans, especially Bills fans who are in their 20's and 30's and never got to experience a home playoff game atmosphere like that.
It won't matter how cold it is or the snow/rain potential, Bills Mafia will made Highmark Stadium come off its hinges next week, IF they beat the Jets today or the Patriots lose against the Dolphins.