The Buffalo Bills put together a special season this year.
They won their first AFC East title in 25 years, they battled their way to the AFC Championship for the first time since 1993 and they came within a win of setting a new franchise record for wins in a season. Bills quarterback Josh Allen and wide receiver Stefon Diggs also rewrote the Bills single-season record book.
But, that all came to an end on Sunday as they lost to the Kansas City Chiefs 38-24 in the AFC Championship.
Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes threw for 325 yards and three touchdowns, Tyreek Hill grabbed nine passes for 172 yards, and tight end Travis Kelce caught a team-high 13 passes for 118 yards and two touchdowns.
Although the Bills lost by 14 points, they jumped out to a 9-0 lead in the first quarter but the defending Super Bowl champions came roaring back. They scored 21 points in the second quarter and then never looked back.
It was a disappointing loss for the Bills in a lot of different ways, mainly because the season was so special. After years of disappointment, the Bills made a run to the AFC Championship, that not many might of expected. So, although it ended without a Lombardi Trophy, safety Micah Hyde was proud of his team and what they were able to accomplish
“I’m proud of what we were able to accomplish this year and I’m proud of the guys in this locker room,” Hyde said via WKBW Sports Director Matt Bove.
With a young core of players coming back next season, including both Allen and Diggs, the Bills are ready to prove that this year wasn’t a fluke and head coach Sean McDermott sent that message after the game.
“We’ll be back,” McDermott said via 13 WHAM Sports Reporter Dan Fetes.
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Allen Upset With Not Being Able to Get Into the End Zone
In his fourth career postseason game, Allen threw for 287 yards, two touchdowns, and one interception while also running seven times for 88 yards, but Allen seemed out of rhythm all night. The Chiefs brought pressure all night long and Allen said that they did a good job of making things look like Cover 0 but would drop off late.
Wide receiver John Brown and Diggs combined for eight catches and 101 yards while Cole Beasley led the team with seven receptions for 88 yards. But oftentimes throughout the night, the Bills weren’t able to get into the back of the endzone when they needed to and settled for field goals instead, which was a big piece to the end result.
“Scoring 24 points against this team usually doesn’t do it,” Allen said via News 4 Buffalo Sports Reporter Heather Prusak.
Another Playoff Loss Will Fuel Bills for Next Season
Heading into the AFC playoffs, a lot of conversation revolved around what the Bills learned from their playoff loss to the Houston Texans last season, and it was a lot. The Bills, especially Allen, used that loss as motivation for this season and it has shown throughout this year.
Now, the Bills have even more motivation to get back to the AFC Championship next season and Allen said he is already ready to be back.
“It’s gonna fuel us and I have no doubt in my mind we will be back,” Allen said in a post-game video conference call.
Diggs wasn’t on the team last season when the Bills lost in the first round of the AFC playoffs. So, his type of motivation might have been different this season, but he created some of that motivation as the Bills walked off the field.
As the Chiefs celebrated their second straight AFC Championship, ESPN’s Dianna Russini took a video of Diggs staying on the field and watching them celebrate, creating some of his own motivation for next season.
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