Leading up to their massive Thanksgiving Day showdown with the New Orleans Saints, the Buffalo Bills were in desperate need of a commanding win. Despite being hailed as Super Bowl favorites all offseason long, recent losses to the Jacksonville Jaguars and Indianapolis Colts had people questioning how legitimate they truly were.
The Colts’ loss, in particular, was concerning. Indianapolis beat the Bills 41-15 in Buffalo, and Carson Wentz emphatically outperformed Bills quarterback Josh Allen.
Needless to say, a national spotlight on Thanksgiving Day against the Saints was the perfect opportunity for Buffalo to reestablish themselves as serious contenders.
The Bills took care of business on Thanksgiving
Before addressing the massive injury that Buffalo just confirmed, it’s important to note they did, in fact, take care of business on Thanksgiving Day.
They crushed the Saints 31-6 in New Orleans, looking very much the part of a top-tier NFL team. Josh Allen and the offense was firing on all cylinders, while the defense forced Saints QB Trevor Siemian into bad throw after bad throw.
However, despite the significant fanfare surrounding the holiday victory, the Bills departed New Orleans as the biggest losers. They lost a key member of their defense to an ACL injury.
CB Tre’Davious White is done for the year with an ACL tear
The No. 1 corner on the Bills’ defense, Tre’Davious White suffered an ACL tear during the Week 12 game in New Orleans. The injury will require surgery, ending White’s season.
The Buffalo Bills released the news fans were dreading: cornerback Tre’Davious White suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee Thursday night and is out for the season.
Aside from quarterback Josh Allen, White is the player the Bills could least afford to lose to injury.
The Buffalo Bills announced that All-Pro cornerback Tre’Davious White would be out for the remainder of the season after suffering a torn ACL on Thursday against the New Orleans Saints.
That’s because White is the most highly regarded player on the Bills’ defense, and the backups to White have limited experience.Mark Gaughan, The Buffalo News
As The Buffalo News’ Mark Gaughan highlights above, White is arguably the Bills’ second-most important player, only trailing quarterback Josh Allen. The Bills paid White $70 million this past offseason due to how good he’s been. He’s an irreplaceable piece to a defense this late in the year.
The Bills’ 2021 Super Bowl dreams are effectively dead
The Bills were already starting to show signs of weakness before White’s ACL tear. Josh Allen was struggling to deal with the intense pressure to win MVP. The run game was mediocre. Now, with the secondary set to take a massive step back following the loss of White, it’s hard to imagine the Bills realistically making a push for the Super Bowl this season.
Even with the AFC being wide open, operating without your best defensive player is an impossible feat to ask of any team.
The NFL is a wild business, and you can never say never. However, this is genuinely a soul-crushing blow for Buffalo.
A magical Super Bowl run for the Bills feels impossible.