Last year, right around this time, the Buffalo Bills pulled a stunt so unBillievable that the team's lucky its fan base didn't experience a collective heart attack. They beat the Patriots -- in a true nail biter, I might add -- for the first time since 2003.
Let's take a moment to relive that moment by clicking here.
Ok, now that we've got that out of our systems (that was intense), is it too risky to dream of a repeat performance this Sunday when the Bills host the Pats at The Ralph? I have jinxing paranoia but there are just some things at play that I can't ignore, and that gives me hope I might be able to relive last year's jumping-on-the-booth-too-overwhelmed-to-breathe moment of victory.
Things in the Bills' favor:
-- The team is coming off two sweet wins during which confidence has been built, a rhythm has been set and excitement is swirling.
-- Ryan Fitzpatrick has done a stellar job bouncing back from the Week 1 debacle and has his offense hot and on a roll. Though Freddy J and CJ Spiller are both questionable for Sunday, things could still turn out ok if Choice makes moves and if Fitz utilizes Chandler and connects with Johnson and Jones.
-- The defense has continued to improve and if the pass rush can disengage Brady, Gronkowski and Welker, one step closer to a win. Bonus: Gronkowski is questionable and Welker hasn't been AS dynamic as previous years. Capitalizing on any takeaways will also be key. When you're playing against the Patriots, there's really no room for wasted opportunities.
-- Bills are playing host. Even Belichick realizes what it means to play in Buffalo and it makes me despise him a teeny bit less. "It's always tough on the road in Buffalo. We'll really have to do a good job in all three areas, all of us that are participating in the game. We'll need a real good effort this week, we know that." -- Belichick this week.
-- The team might be without Jackson and Spiller. No further explanation needed.
-- The Patriots are coming off two losses. History shows that NE doesn't like serial losses very much, so Brady might be in overdrive.
-- The Patriots offense. Despite how the past two weeks have played out, NE is still a force on offense.
-- The Patriots secondary, specifically on the ground. Good thing Fitz might be opting for more airtime.
It's really a toss-up. Optimistic Bills Chick billieves the Bills can push the Pats into a third straight week of losses. Cynical/trying-to-avoid-a-jinx Bills Chick is a little more worried. Here's my plan: mentally prepare myself for a win so that I can avoid scaring away my new Queens Bills friends with any unpredictable and uncontrollable reactions. Oh, how I want to feel that "beat the Patriots" high again!