I envisioned the Buffalo Bills going to Miami and dominating the Dolphins to set up for a big showdown with the New England Patriots this weekend. Unfortunately that didn't happen, but Buffalo was still able to pull out a win, which is the most important thing.
Despite giving up a lot of yards on the ground to the Dolphins, the Bills defense played well and was able to keep the game close until the offense was able to put up some points. I'm still confident heading into this week's big matchup with the undefeated Patriots because Buffalo won a game they should have won, even though it wasn't in dominating fashion.
However, this week, the Bills will have to play an error free game and J.P. Losman must shine and show he can be the star quarterback that can win big games like everybody is hoping for.
New England has had two weeks to prepare for the Bills and that could be good or bad, we will see. Anytime you play a team for the second time in a season you have a better idea of what the players on the other side of the ball can do and you're more familiar with the oppositions' scheme. But when the game is underway the players must let their instincts take over and make plays when they need to be made.
All week long every single person in the Bills locker room must be thinking they can win this week. Sure players will always say a win is possible but mentally and in their hearts they must believe they can be the first team to defeat the Patriots this year. That confidence starts at the top with the coaches and front office and includes everybody that has contact with the team, including the trainers and equipment staff.
There's no doubt in my mind that the Bills can beat the Patriots. J.P. Losman must play better and avoid turnovers on offense. New England is a scoring machine and the Bills can't afford to give Tom Brady a short field to work on. With a short field of 50-60 yards the Patriots offense will get at least three points each time. The Bills must make sure Brady has to drive 80-90 yards on the majority of his drives.
The 12th man is going to play a big part in Sunday's game. As a quarterback, I know how important the 12th man was when I played. When I watched the Seattle Seahawks game on Monday Night Football this past week I saw those fans on their feet from start to finish, which disrupted the San Francisco 49ers offense and forced them into several false starts.
With an extra 6-7 hours to tailgate on Sunday, Bills fans are going to be loud and crazy, which is what players love to see.
Brady is one of the best quarterbacks in a long time and the 12th man must do everything they can to disrupt the rhythm of the offense. As soon as Brady steps on the field fans should be screaming. A loud stadium when the quarterback is in the huddle makes it hard for the wide receivers and offensive linemen to hear the play called and of course a loud stadium at the line makes it hard for an audible to be made.
If the Bills win this game it will be a total team effort, not just because of the players and coaches, but with the help of the 12th man as well.