These fucking guys.
In the sense that yesterday's game was very different from the first two exhibitions this season, yes, things have changed and hooray I guess. In the sense that the probative value of the win against Arizona is limited AF, giving us little real sense of which Bills team will show up for the next four, eight, fourteen games this year, and that the prejudicial tendencies of the game are high AF as it threatens to elicit a too-familiar and unwelcome optimism in even the most jaded sports fan, fuck this win.
This team is fucking bullshit. Winning capably a few times a year is their recipe for the bait-and-switch, and even if they don't intend to, giving us performances like Sunday's does little else than give us a glimpse of winning football, a confirmation that the Bills can manage to play winning football here and there, and Exhibit A for why we shit bricks when winning football proves elusive as it always does eventually.
Good god this team is fucking bullshit.
Harts called this in his preview, and this Week 3 win was literally the best case scenario after an OC gets canned and the team gets an unmistakable spark as it [insert cliché regarding getting back to basics and/or getting the ball to playmakers]. Part of The Apologist's piece was poking fun at that clichéd predictability of the narrative wrapped up in throwing an assistant coach or coordinator under the bus when the HC is under fire, but this time the clichés ended up being prescient, which makes sense because sometimes that happens and those times are what keeps coaches believing that token firings can help a bad team become suddenly good.
What we had yesterday really can't be viewed through a lens other than one that recognizes the likelihood that this game was a blip; a fun blip, for sure - the kind of serendipity-laden result that permits lazy and/or blissfully hopeful consumers of the sport talk of Any Given Sunday as if the NFL was all about parity and wasn't a place where nearly half of the teams have not won a title and probably won't be sniffing one any time soon - but a blip all the same.
That all said, what we had yesterday - set against the paradigm of 74% of Super Bowls being won by 28% of the NFL's teams - was enjoyable and glorious and about all we can hope for under the soon-to-be sun-scorched and/or flooded earth. Eat at Arby's.
So let's revel in the afterglow a bit, y'all. Even in the struggle to 3 to 6 wins, a few Sundays will feel damn good.
THINGS I LIKED:
2. Sustained drives. The Bills failures in Week 2 were not complicated; the offense couldn't sustain drives, the defense was overextended and gassed because of the increased workload and shorter breaks between drives, and it was basically quicksand. Fixing those things sure looks simple when, at the outset, the Bills were able to keep the ball moving down the field and control the pace of the game.
3. Getting at the QB. Another defensive plus, and mutually affirming with the play of the secondary. They brushed off last week's poor game, and made Palmer look entirely his age and his mixed-bag resumé. This is another area where the obvious coaching clichés came good; it remains to be seen whether that rhetoric is actually matched in how this team operates on a regular basis, rather than through the course of an often treacherous slog through a 16-game season. All the same, this was a good effort from the front seven (with an assist from the secondary, and vice versa) and the results were of high quality. With Dareus coming back soon, it's pretty easy to be excited about the team's ability to get through the line of scrimmage and lay waste to some chumps.
THINGS I DIDN'T LIKE:
1. Dumb penalties. This one is mostly directed at Jerry Hughes, which sucks because he's been a lone bright spot when the defense has struggled this year, but that facemask/helmet removal moment of wizadry was some bullshit. The Bills were fucking coasting at that point, had gotten another massive stop, had sacked Palmer again, and it was all for shit because of one moment of roid ragey nonsense. Christ.
Incidentally, moments like that affirm my fervent belief that these players should be allowed - nay, encouraged - to smoke weed. The only times I've ever been a little toasty and had the urge to rip someone's head off, in person, the finishing move just ends up morphing into a big bear hug. Hashtag science.
2, Bruce Arians. Here's a little logical progression for you: Inconsistent play, such that fans have no fucking idea what to expect and such that the very best result of the season is another 7 to 9 win season, makes me fucking insane. Bruce Arians coached such a stupid game that he created a mirage of a competent football team in the blue jerseys on Sunday. Therefore, Bruce Arians makes me fucking insane.
I wish the Bills could pick an identity and stick with it, and Arians stole that from us on Sunday. Fuck that man.
3. This nagging feeling that I'm not allowed to like fun things. We're in full neurosis territory right now.
Highlight Reel Unrelated to Bills Football
Barrister's Reading List
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