1. Will Tre'Davious White match up exclusively with DeAndre Hopkins?
Tre'Davious White led the NFL in interceptions this year, had 599 plays in coverage, and didn't allow a single touchdown. On Saturday, he gets another chance to shine on a national stage against one of the NFL's premier wide receivers in DeAndre Hopkins.
Defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier did not commit to the Bills using White to shadow Hopkins.
"Well, Deandre is a tremendous receiver. He's an all-pro player and he's capable of having one of those explosive gains. We're very fortunate to have a guy like Tre'Davious, who can match up with a lot of receivers, I'm not sure we'll do that this week," Frazier said. "But we have a lot of respect for what DeAndre has done in our league and what he's continued to do, even this season. So, we'll try to put together a good plan to contain him and then we'll go from there."
White has been used to shadow receivers before this season and Bills fans saw it against the Washington and Terry McLaurin, Cleveland's Odell Beckham Jr., and Denver's Courtland Sutton.
2. Bills offensive coordinator started his Houston prep on Sunday night
By the time the Bills game ended on Sunday, they knew which team they'd be meeting in the playoffs. The Bills and Houston Texans are slated to play the first playoff game on Saturday at 4:35 pm, giving each team the least amount of time to prep beforehand.
For Buffalo offensive coordinator Brian Daboll, that prep started last night.
"Had a game yesterday, came in last night after the game to get ready to go onto Houston," Daboll said. "You're excited to play this time of year, prepare this time of year, there's not enough hours in the day. … This will be a tough task and we've got a lot of work ahead of us."
The Bills coaching staff has a lot of playoff experience between Daboll, Sean McDermott, and Leslie Frazier but Daboll is not sure how much that experience matters. Instead, Daboll is taking advice from a former head coach he worked under.
"I worked for a guy that has a lot of playoff games under his belt and the message I took from him was, 'You can only control what you can control,' and that's this week," Daboll said. "It's not where you play and when you play, you've got to take care of your job and do it to the best of your ability. One game really has no bearing on the next whether it's being in the Super Bowl, versus being in the wild card, versus being in the divisional game or AFC Championship game, they're all important and each week is its own week."
3. Why Leslie Frazier is confident that Kevin Johnson can keep his emotions in check
Bills cornerback Kevin Johnson signed a one-year deal with Buffalo this offseason. Although originally not on the Bills schedule, Johnson will head back to Houston after spending the first four years of his career there.
Johnson was the Texans first round pick in 2015.
"I'm sure the fact that, going back to Houston, that'll be some added incentive for him, for sure," defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier said. "He's a guy who is very competitive and wants to do well. We're very fortunate that he's been playing all along and this is not going to be something new for him. So, I think he'll be in a groove throughout this week in practice and we're going to need him."
The Bills have acquired injuries at the cornerback position at the wrong time as Levi Wallace left Sunday's game against the Jets with an ankle injury. In Wallace's absence, Johnson has stepped into the No. 2 outside cornerback role.
"But the fact that he has been participating, has been getting in games and been making plays for us, that should help a lot," Frazier said. "This will be a big contest for a lot of reasons. And he'll be up to the challenge, he's a pro, he understands how to channel that energy and focus it in the right place and not get, you know, hijacked by the emotions of going back to his former team. He'll handle it the right way."