They were a playoff team in 2017. But what five questions do the Buffalo Bills need to answer if the team wants to returns to the postseason?
Before delving into the biggest concerns surrounding Sean McDermott’s club, it would be foolish to speculate on the future of veteran running back LeSean McCoy. At press time, he was embroiled in an off-the-field controversy that was still very much under investigation.
It’s a franchise that a year ago finally reached the playoffs for the first time this century. But the Buffalo Bills still haven’t been crowned NFL champions and haven’t won a division title since 1995. That’s also the last season the club prevailed in a postseason game. Yes, Sean McDermott’s team wound up having a fine 2017. But the organization has much bigger goals for obvious reasons. And that is why it was another offseason for the team from Orchard Park, New York.
Current general manager Brandon Beane remained aggressive during free agency and the NFL draft. Hence, this is a club with a lot of changes at key positions. Which means there are probably more than five burning questions when it comes to the Bills. But you have to start somewhere, so…
5. Can new coordinator Brian Daboll make the offense better?
A season ago, only three teams in the NFL gained fewer yards per game and only the Chicago Bears finished with fewer yards per game through the air. All told, the Buffalo Bills totaled a mere 28 offensive touchdowns in 16 regular-season contests and were limited to only three points in the playoff loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Enter Brian Daboll, who has made his stops around the NFL but spent this past season running Nick Saban’s offense at the University of Alabama. He brings a working knowledge of the AFC East, having spent time with the Patriots, Jets and Dolphins this century. He’s had a pair of stints in Foxborough, the most recent coming from 2013-16 before jumping to the Crimson Tide.
Daboll inherits a unit that will be grooming a new starting quarterback and looking for some immediate continuity on the offensive line. This is a Buffalo team that fell off dramatically from the previous season in terms of touchdown production. All told, the well-traveled experienced coach has a tough task ahead of him made harder by all of the changes.