Graham: Bills are historic underdogs

Inside The Buffalo Huddle
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Buffalo Bills quarterback Nathan Peterman (2) before an NFL football game against the Indianapolis Colts in Indianapolis, Sunday, Oct. 21, 2018. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

The Bills are back at home and will try to snap a three game losing streak when they host the Bears on Sunday.  There is plenty of uncertainty at the quarterback position, especially with Sean McDermott once again having to turn the offense over to Nathan Peterman.

Should Peterman go down, newly signed Matt Barkley will be the on taking the snaps. With that kind of instability at the most important position in the NFL, oddsmakers don’t like the Bills chances. This week on Buffalo Kickoff LIVE, The Athletic’s Tim Graham took at how little faith Vegas has in Buffalo.

By: Tim Graham, The Athletic

The Buffalo Bills are in a bad way, a historically bad way.

A few weeks ago, when the Bills went on the road to play the Vikings, we examined how rare it is for an NFL team to be such a heavy underdog: 16.5 points that day — and the Bills blew them out — the
most lopsided victory for such a lopsided underdog in 45 years.

That big win sure feels like a distant blip today. Confidence in the Bills has plummeted to new depths, the kind of depths that send us to the record books for context.

The Bills are 10-point underdogs today at home against the Bears. The Bills were 13.5 underdogs Monday night, also at home, to the Patriots. That’s a franchise first, to be a double-digit home dog in consecutive games.

Only once have the Bills been double-digit home dogs twice in a season and that was 2007.

How little respect have the Bills earned? They’re on the way to become the NFL’s first team to reach the playoffs one year and then be an underdog for all 16 games the following year.

Even donkey teams find a way to be favored once or twice a season. Over the past decade the Browns and Lions went 0-16, but each were betting favorites for a game during their woeful season.

During the 17-year playoff drought, the Bills never went an entire season as underdogs. The lone time it happened was 1985, the second straight season the Bills posted a 2-14 record.

As awful as Buffalo’s offense has been, and considering that their quarterback situation continues to nosedive, we could be looking at a similar situation.

What would it take for the Bills to be favored this? Well, they’d need to be at New Era Field, they’d need Josh Allen back and the opponent would have to be falling apart before everybody’s eyes. Maybe the Jets or Dolphins in December.

Until then, get ready for dog days like we haven’t seen around here since Vince Ferragamo was quarterback.

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