The Bills look just like a certain 2011 playoff team

The 2019 Bills are all too similar to the 2011 Denver Broncos

Louie DiBiase
November 11, 2019 - 2:52 am

If the famous Spider Man GIF had to be applied to the 2019 Buffalo Bills and another former playoff contender, the 2011 Denver Broncos fit the mold perfectly. 

When describing what that team was all about in their run to the playoffs, see if you can spot any similarities with the current Bills. 

A top-tier defense that keeps them in every game. A young, mobile quarterback that is often a liability as a passer, but has also become known for their fourth quarter comebacks. A fan base that has married the phrase "a win is a win" after close calls against inferior opponents. 

Checks all the boxes no? 

The way the Bills have gotten to 6-3 through nine games looks to be a very similar path. 

The Denver defense would stand on its head for three and a half quarters, and then Tim Tebow took over. Led by his legs, Tebow would orchestrate a game-winning drive in the final minutes. 

This has been the case for most of the Bills' wins in 2019 with Josh Allen leading the league in game-winning fourth quarter drives.

As there was with the 2011 Broncos, there is a cap on how far this blue print can take a team.

That cap was never more evident than in Buffalo's 19-16 loss against the Browns Sunday. 

Per the usual, the Bills defense put Allen in a position to tie or win the football game with time winding down. This was despite the second-year signal caller, once again, committing a costly turnover (fumbled in the red zone) and having no ability to throw a pass even close to an open target deep down the field. 

Allen couldn't find the same Tebow-like magic he has had late in 2019.

Buffalo elected to go for a deep shot and a 53-yard field goal with a kicker that had already missed one during the game, rather than trust their franchise quarterback to get four yards on on a 3rd-and-4 play. 

These in-game situations have gone the Bills way more times than not against losing teams this season, but the minute they run into any team with talent (New England Patriots, Philadelphia Eagles, and Cleveland Browns), it hasn't. 

Most of the blame for that belongs on the right shoulder of Allen. 

This was the same problem with Denver. While an elite defense and good situational play from Tebow was good enough to even win a home Wild Card game, Denver had no chance on the road against the Patriots in the divisional round. 

Against a team of that caliber, a win required a strong 60-minute showing from every phases of the team. To expect a win against top talent, with no consistency in the passing game is a pipe dream. 

There is a reason Tebow was not re-signed the following year as the Broncos brought in future Hall of Fame quarterback Peyton Manning. 

Now it wouldn't be fair to say Allen is Tebow as a passer. He certainly is not. However, the same core issue is there.

If the Bills want to be more than the one-hit wonders of the Tebow-led Broncos, or the 2017 drought-ending Bills, the blueprint to win has to change. 

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