The Buffalo Bills head into the 2022 NFL season with the highest odds to win Super Bowl 57, and the bulk of that hype stems from the fact that team is built around quarterback Josh Allen, whose near-perfect performance in the playoffs catapulted him to superstar status.
In nearly every analyst’s ranking across the league, Allen ranks as the No. 2 quarterback, just behind the Kansas City Chiefs star Patrick Mahomes. NBC Sports reporter Chris Simms, however, placed Allen in the No. 1 spot above Mahomes in his 2022 prediction rankings.
“Allen is the best quarterback in the NFL right now, there is no doubt,” he announced on June 16 via Chris Simms Unbuttoned. “He is the guy I would take right off the bat. No one is asked to do more for their team, or carry their team more on a weekly basis than Josh Allen.”
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Because so much is expected of Allen, Bleacher Report’s Maurice Moton predicts the 26-year-old could “fall short of self-imposed, in-house or perceived outside expectations with an underwhelming season.”
Moton wrote on Tuesday, June 21, “The Buffalo Bills offense, which is built around quarterback Josh Allen, could regress following the departure of former offensive coordinator Brian Daboll, who took the New York Giants’ head-coaching job in January.”
“Going into 2022, the Bills have a first-time offensive play-caller in Ken Dorsey. He served as the quarterbacks coach and passing game coordinator over the last three years,” Morton wrote, noting Allen’s “realistic” comments to reporters about Dorsey last month.
“It’s going to be a learning process for [Dorsey] as well,” Allen said. “We’re humans. We’re not perfect. We’re not expecting each other to be perfect. But as long as we’re on the same page, which I think we are and we’ll continue to grow with it, I think we’ll be just fine.”
Moton surmised, “Allen could have a decent year, though his development may plateau as the offense goes through changes. If he regresses like Ryan Tannehill after the Tennessee Titans lost offensive coordinator Arthur Smith to the Falcons last offseason, Bills fans can forget a shot at the Super Bowl.”
Allen’s Most Recent Comments on Dorsey Tell a Different Story
It should be noted that Moton doesn’t include Allen’s most recent comments on Dorsey. “Doesn’t feel like we’ve missed a step,” the quarterback said on June 14. “The verbiage is still the same, the protections are still the same. We’ve switched up a couple plays here and there with concepts and thought processes. But again, being able to call the same play and players know this play like the back of their hand, and it’s just our job to go out there and execute.”
As for head coach Sean McDermott, he loves what he’s seen in practice so far. Promoting Dorsey to offensive coordinator instead of an outside hire, McDermott told reporters last week that the team is “light years ahead.”
“The Bills may not start the season red-hot on offense,” Moton wrote. “If they don’t, Dorsey and Allen will have to iron out some wrinkles to match the production rate of last year’s unit, which ranked third in scoring and fifth in yards.”
On the flip side, Pro Football Network‘s Dalton Miller says the most exciting part about Allen is how much he continues to improve each year.
“The scariest part about Allen is that he’s not done progressing as a passer yet,” Dalton surmised. “He still has days where things aren’t always clicking. That means he hasn’t yet hit his ceiling, which as Michael Jordan would poetically say, ‘is the roof.'”
How Allen Will Perform Without Daboll & How the Giants Coach Will Fare Without Allen Is Up for Debate
The discussion over whether Allen would be where he is without Daboll and how Daboll will fare as head coach of the New York Giants without an elite quarterback leading the team, became a hot topic of debate on Twitter.
Pro Football Focus analyst Sam Monson tweeted on June 16, “If Josh Allen never happened, Brian Daboll’s resume looks verrrrry different. & I think it’s pretty unclear who or what was primarily responsible for Allen’s development. This is a downer of a tweet, but just struck me today looking through his career.”
NFL Draft analyst Joe Marino believes the credit goes beyond just Allen and Daboll. Marino tweeted, “Boring response but I believe the person most responsible for Josh Allen’s growth is Josh Allen. He embraced the areas he needed to get better and made it happen. Daboll, McDermott, Beane and Jordan Palmer deserve plenty of credit but Josh himself gets the most credit IMO.”
A Cover 1 sports host used an outside example in his arugment. He tweeted, “If Tom Brady never happened, Bill Belichick’s resume looks verrrrry different. & I think it’s pretty unclear who or what was primarily responsible for Brady’s development. This is a downer of a tweet, but just struck me today looking through his career.”