When the Buffalo Bills flew out to Kansas City three months ago, they were a team on a seek and destroy mission.
They did their best to deny that, both before the game and after they had cathartically trounced the Chiefs 38-20 on the grand stage of Sunday Night Football, but everyone saw through the litany of cliches that were spewed.
We knew that plane ride home through the wee hours of the morning was joyous, and how could it not have been? And how could they have possibly thought we were going to believe left tackle Dion Dawkins when he said, “It feels good but it ain’t nothing different, honestly. We still got a whole two and a half months of football left. This win don’t mean nothing.”
Yeah, it meant something. It meant a whole lot because they had been at Arrowhead Stadium nine months earlier, and in that blood red venue the Bills were no match for Andy Reid, Patrick Mahomes, Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce during a 38-24 beatdown in the AFC Championship Game, bringing Buffalo’s breakthrough 2020 season to a nosedive crash.
Buffalo wide receiver Stefon Diggs stands on the field in Kansas City after the Chiefs beat the Bills 38-24 in the AFC championshp game on Jan. 24, 2021.
It was a defeat that resonated inside the walls at One Bills Drive for months, and it was the driving force behind almost everything general manager Brandon Beane and coach Sean McDermott did as they reimagined the roster in the offseason.
Never mind that the Chiefs were blown out by Tom Brady and the Buccaneers in the Super Bowl, Kansas City had still built a fortress around AFC supremacy, and unless the Bills could find a way to scale it, they had no chance of getting back to the Super Bowl for the first time since January 1994.
Credit to star cornerback Tre’Davious White for saying so after the title game. “Plain and simple, to get to where we want to be, that’s going to be the team we’re going to have to go over,” he said. “We’re going to have to find a way to beat…