“Forgetta bout it” okay, got that out of my system. When you get inducted into the Bills Mafia you can’t help but want to use clichés like that. Let me be the first to welcome you to the inaugural edition of my weekly article for the BillsMafia blog, “The Samuelson Slant.” It will be my goal to be realistic, honest and tell you exactly how I feel about my favorite team in all of professional sports as well as provide a unique perspective full of my own wit and flair about all things Buffalo Bills.
I say I offer a unique perspective because I don’t remember any of the heartbreak of the 90’s and no, I’m not just saying that, I really don’t remember. I wasn’t raised a huge football fan, we were always a basketball household. Being born and raised in Western New York though, I obviously know all the history of the organization. I’ve heard the horror stories of losing four straight Super Bowls, not to mention the “Music City Miracle.” However, since I don’t remember any of it personally, the impact of those events is mitigated. I’m not bitter about it at all and I can talk about it without disgust and rage.
The first Bills memories I have are from the 2002 season, when I was 10. In case you’re not up on your Bills history, it means Drew Bledsoe is the first quarterback I remember. I’ve never seen the Bills win more than 9 games in a season and I’ve never even seen them in the playoffs.
All those factors make me a prime example of what I like to call a “Generation Drought” Bills fan. “Generation Drought” fans are characterized by their realistic optimism. They don’t remember the awful past, but they haven’t known the playoff successes that came in the past either. Therefore, they’re balanced in their opinions of the Bills – Not too high and never too down.
Like many fans though, around this time of year I’m not thinking about the past. For me, it is all about the future and the unbridled optimism that comes with each off-season. The time when you get more excited about mock drafts than you care to admit and the chance that this will be the season they finally end the drought.
So now that you know a little more about me, we can get into where the Bills are going. Like I said, I’m excited for the draft and you should be too. The Bills are in another prime position to add a lot of talent to their roster and give them a realistic opportunity to compete in the AFC East.
Tom Brady and the New England Patriots are still Brady and the Patriots, so the Bills will probably be playing for second place in the AFC East. Simply put, until Brady retires the Bills will be hard pressed to win the AFC East. That doesn’t mean they can’t make the playoffs as a Wild Card team though. See? I told you I was going to be honest and realistic.
Quick disclaimer if any of you reading this were disappointed by the content: I promise my future posts will be a lot more Bills focused and interesting. It was just necessary to tell you about where I’m coming from, so you’ll understand my take on things, especially for all those of you that find yourself a part of “Generation Drought” as well.
So be sure to check out my next few posts as I look at how the results of the 2014 NFL combine impact different players on the Bills’ radar. I’ll also make a case for and against different options with the No. 9 pick and discuss overall draft strategy for the Buffalo Bills.