1. What Tom Brady's departure means for Buffalo and the AFC East
At 8:44 a.m. on March 17, 2020, Tom Brady made it official that he will not return to the New England Patriots. The man who has been at the helm for the franchise for two decades will depart and leave the AFC East for good.
Writers from The Athletic broke down what it means for the rest of the AFC East. Joe Buscaglia broke down what it means for Buffalo.
The timing of this, from a Bills perspective, couldn't be better. They have one of the better general manager-head coach tandems in the NFL who have executed a roster-building plan together. They ripped it down to the studs in 2017 and 2018, built the roster up through the draft and the middle tier of free agency, watched their young quarterback, Josh Allen, grow and develop in 2019 … The defense is one of the NFL's best, coached by one of the best defensive minds in Sean McDermott. GM Brandon Beane has been working toward this moment with all of the trades and signings he has made over the last three years. The division title is there for the taking in 2020.
2. Are the Bills ready to compete for a championship?
NFL analyst for The Athletic and GM Shuffle podcast host Mike Lombardi joined One Bills Live on Tuesday to talk about the Bills recent moves and the message they are sending to the rest of the NFL. When asked if the Bills are ready to compete for a championship, he offered this response.
"I definitely think they are (competing for a championship)," Lombardi said. "It comes down to the quality and the consistent play from the quarterback. That's who wins championships. Championships are won by guys who play quarterback. That's the reality of it. [Josh Allen] doesn't have to get 50 percent better. He doesn't have to get 30 percent better. He has to get 10 percent better. If he does that, they are going to compete. They have to play the same way they played on defense last year – they have to be opportunistic. They have to turn the ball over. Don't give up any big throws."
3. Who is Buffalo's best recent free agent signing?
The NFL's legal tampering period will close at 4 pm. and thus begin free agency where all reported deals and trades will be made official.
ESPN looked at the top signing for each team since 2015. Buffalo's is one-half of its dynamic safety tandem.
Best free-agent signing: S Jordan Poyer. You also could make an argument for fellow safety Micah Hyde, but the production Buffalo has gotten from Poyer far exceeds the bargain contract he signed in 2017. Together with Hyde, Poyer has changed the identity of the Bills' defense.
In three seasons with the Bills, Poyer has played in all but one game. He has 11 interceptions, 22 passes defensed and over 300 tackles.