9,142 days. 219,408 hours. 13,164,480 minutes. 789,868,800 seconds. That is how long the Buffalo Bills had to wait to win a playoff game. It is also how long they had to wait to host a playoff game in Orchard Park. In the previous 9,142 days the Bills played a playoff game in just 5 of them. It was the 6th day that marked their first win in that span. Their first win in 25 years came in Sean McDermott’s third try, as he has lead the team to the playoffs in 3 of his 4 seasons as head coach. It wasn’t without drama though, as the Bills squeaked out a 27-24 win over the Indianapolis Colts.
It became very clear early in the game that the Bills would not be enjoying another stress-free blowout win that fans have come accustomed to over the last month of the season. At the end of the game Cole Beasley reminded us that this is how playoff games are won and there is no easy road to the Super Bowl.
“This is the playoffs– this is what it’s going to be. It’s going to come down to the wire every time…teams play their best football in the playoffs.”-Cole Beasley
The Bills’ defense will catch a lot of flack this week for their second half performance and letting the Colts back in the game. But the fact is they came up with key red-zone stops on multiple occasions early in the game and then defended the final drive of the game perfectly. Playoff wins require all three phases of the team to perform, and while today was rocky at times, the Bills managed to make plays when it mattered. In fact, Jordan Poyer made the play of the day even though the NFL somehow determined that it didn’t count. Despite the terrible call, Poyer and the rest of the defense were able to maintain their composure and prevent the Colts from gaining another yard.
Josh Allen continued to show the NFL world that he is the real deal – finishing 26/35 for 324 yards and 2 TD. He also added 54 yards and 1 TD on the ground as well. The third-year star accounted for 378 of the teams 397 total yards. Allen is the first player in NFL history to throw for 300+ yards and rush for 50+ yards while having a completion percentage above 70+%. Allen also set a team playoff record with his 12 straight completions in the second half. Finally, the team set a playoff record with their 96 yard touchdown drive, marking the longest in Bills playoff history.
Up next for the Bills will be the Steelers, Titans or Ravens. While we do not know their opponent and time of the game we do know one thing: the game will be played in Orchard Park. For the first time since Saturday January 15th 1994, a divisional playoff game will be played in Buffalo. 9,856 days. 236,544 hours. 14,192,640 minutes. 851,558,400 seconds.