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Previewing the AFC East: Were the Bills One-Hit Wonders?
Detroit Free Press

Previewing the AFC East: Were the Bills One-Hit Wonders?

The AFC East had a different look last year as the Patriots were dethroned by the Buffalo Bills. New England and Bill Belichick responded by spending almost $160,000,000 on free agents to bolster their roster. It remains to be seen if it will work out without Tom Brady. The Dolphins went 10-6 and barely missed the playoffs and they are moving up and building a solid foundation. And, then there are the Jets, which every other team in the division appreciates because that is usually a guaranteed win. But there are signs of improvement in New York also.


Quarterback: 1. Bills, 2. Patriots, 3. Dolphins, 4. Jets

Running Backs: 1. Patriots, 2. Bills, 3. Jets, 4. Dolphins

Receivers: 1. Bills, 2. Dolphins, 3. Jets, 4. Patriots

Offensive Line: 1. Patriots, 2. Bills, 3. Jets, 4. Dolphins

Defensive Line: 1. Dolphins, 2. Patriots, 3. Bills, 4. Jets

Linebackers: 1. Patriots, 2. Bills, 3. Dolphins, 4. Jets

Secondary: 1. Dolphins, 2. Bills, 3. Patriots, 4. Jets

Coaches: 1. Patriots, 2. Bills, 3. Dolphins, 4. Jets

Buffalo is now the team to beat in this division. They have a young, dynamic quarterback in Josh Allen and took measures through free-agency and the draft to address any issues they have. They made it to the AFC Championship game where the Chiefs handled them 38-24 so they have a ways to go to get to the next step. It will be interesting to see how they handle life at the top.

The Dolphins netted eleven extra draft picks through trades using three of them in 2021. They let Ryan Fitzgerald go in free agency and handed the quarterback duties to Tua Tagovailoa. They acquired three receivers to help his progression as a full-time starter. They also took steps to bolster their 20th ranked defense. Can they improve on their 10-6 record of a year ago?

Obviously, Bill Belichick took the Patriot’s 7-9 record personally, as he spent a ton of money and signed 12 veteran players during free agency. They brought back Cam Newton at quarterback and drafted Alabama signal-caller Mac Jones with the 15th overall pick. New England will be back on top before long and have a chance at the playoffs in 2021.

At long last, there seems to be some hope for the Jets. They drafted Zach Wilson out of BYU and signed some pieces around him through free agency. They will take their lumps this year but there is light at the end of the tunnel.

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