The expectations are running high for the Buffalo Bills entering the 2021 season after advancing to the AFC Championship Game in 2020. It was the Kansas City Chiefs who would send the Bills home last season, but being able to make a deep run in the postseason can be considered a success. With Josh Allen looking to build upon his impressive performance in 2020, Buffalo is projected to be one of the top-tier teams in the NFL this season.
Stefon Diggs is entering his second season with Allen as his quarterback after having a remarkable showing last year. Where Buffalo would love to see improvements made is on the defensive side of the ball, especially in the pass-rushing department.
As the Bills look to build upon what they did in 2020, here are five bold predictions for Buffalo in the 2021 season.
5. Josh Allen Leads The Team In Rushing
Many people have been arguing whether it will be Zack Moss or Devin Singletary to lead the backfield in rushing yards in 2021. Both are expected to split touches to begin the season as Matt Breida could earn a role in the offense as the season progresses. While Moss, Singletary, and Breida could all lead the way in the running game, maybe it’s Allen who ends up squashing all of the arguments of who could lead the team in rushing.
Allen led the Bills in rushing back in 2018 as a rookie, and he’s eclipsed 400+ rushing yards in each of his first three seasons. Seeing that Buffalo doesn’t have a definitive No. 1 running back, Allen has a chance to be the leading rusher on the team for the second time in his career.
4. Josh Allen Wins NFL MVP
If Allen is able to lead the Bills in rushing in 2021, there’s a decent chance he’s going to cement himself as an MVP candidate for the second straight year. Despite Allen’s efforts in 2020, it was Aaron Rodgers who deservedly won the award as he threw for 48 touchdowns and only five interceptions.
After struggling with accuracy in his previous seasons, Allen completed 69.2 percent of his passes in 2020 for 4,544 yards, 37 touchdowns, and 10 interceptions. Upon seeing what Allen did last season and how he looked in the preseason, it wouldn’t be crazy to expect him to win the NFL MVP trophy this season.
3. Bills Have Two Wide Receivers Record 1,000+ Receiving Yards
Under Brian Daboll, and with Allen and Diggs, the Bills have quickly become one of the best aerial offenses in the NFL. The addition of Diggs gave Buffalo a true No. 1 wide receiver and someone that Allen can trust to make catches at any moment. Besides Diggs, the Bills have a deep wide receiver corps that features Cole Beasley, Gabriel Davis, and Emmanuel Sanders.
While Diggs — barring an injury — is going to easily produce 1,000+ receiving yards, another member of Buffalo’s offense will record 1,000+ receiving yards. It will be the first time since 2002 that the Bills will have two 1,000-yard seasons from two wide receivers when Eric Moulds and Peerless Price achieved the feat.
2. Buffalo’s Defense Finishes Inside The Top Five In Sacks
Being able to get pressure on the quarterback has been a weakness of the defense of the Bills. Despite having Jerry Hughes, Ed Oliver, and Mario Addison on the defensive front, Buffalo was 15th in the NFL in sacks in 2020 with 38. Buffalo’s defense hasn’t been top 10 in sacks in the NFL since the 2016 campaign.
Furthermore, the Bills haven’t concluded a season in the top five in sacks since the 2014 season when they led the league with 54 sacks. To go along with their high-octane offense, the defense of the Bills proceeds to finish the 2021 season inside the top five in sacks once again.
1. Bills Don’t Advance Beyond The Wild Card Round
If you were to ask anyone to pick a team besides the Chiefs to advance to the Super Bowl in the AFC, many people would say the Bills. The Baltimore Ravens would likely be another popular choice. But Buffalo made the AFC Championship Game last season, only for them to fall victim to the unstoppable Kansas City offense led by Patrick Mahomes.
Besides the New England Patriots under Tom Brady and the Chiefs with Mahomes, history tells us that it’s unlikely that Buffalo will advance to the Conference Championship for the second straight year. I’ll take it a step further and say that the Bills will be eliminated in the Wild Card Round this season. After all, these are bold predictions, right?