Never thought you’d see that hug, did you?
There are a few potential reactions to yesterday’s game. The first, of course, is happiness. Beating the Dolphins is always fun, and after the embarrassment the Bills endured on their trip to Miami in October, it was nice to return the favor for sure.
However, the practical and cynical parts of the mind do play a role here. The more the Bills win, the closer they get to a mid-range draft pick that another 7-9 season brings them. The Bills are a bad team, but managing to win games like this makes their record a bit better and separates them from the Clevelands and Oaklands of the NFL. That means worse draft picks, and so we should root for them to fail, right?
I don’t know guys, I just can’t bring myself to do that. As bad as this team is, losing games is still tough on me as a fan. No one wants to see their team lose, and even knowing the positives that can eventually come from losing, I still can’t bring myself to rooting against them.
Besides, the more I think about the draft the more I think about the general manager. As Matt Millen showed us time and time again, it’s not where you pick from in the draft, but who is doing the picking. The last time they drafted in the top five, they got Mike Williams. We know how that turned out. Being successful in the draft is not always about drafting high, but drafting correctly. It’s been a long time since I’ve been confident in who is pulling the trigger on draft picks, and that’s something I hope they fix over the winter.
So enjoy the win over the hated Dolphins, but it is important not to get too excited about it. This is not Fitzpatrick’s coming out party, this is not Owens showing that he wants to stay past this year, and this is not Perry Fewell removing the “interim” label from his job description. This was the Bills playing like a real football team, and that’s good enough for me.
I’ll admit, I liked a lot of what I saw. The Bills tactically outplayed Miami and kept Ricky Williams from exploding. I would even go as far as saying the Bills outcoached the Dolphins, something that hasn’t happened to this team in years. Miami’s staff told everyone what they wanted Williams to run, and once they hit those numbers everyone knew they would have to throw. It was a miscalculation by the Dolphins but one the Bills were, for once, very aware of.
It doesn’t change anything but Miami’s chances of winning the division. This game meant a whole lot to the Dolphins and they didn’t come through, and you have to take a bit of joy from that as well. For once Ralph Wilson Stadium had reason to cheer, and I don’t blame them at all.
It doesn’t change anything but the numbers, but I’m okay with that.