The Buffalo Bills are already being written in as the Super Bowl 57 champions before the season has even started. At +600, Buffalo is the odds-on favorite to win it all in 2023, but I’m not as bullish as the general public.
This is a team that has reached just one AFC Championship Game in the Josh Allen era. They’re extremely talented, sure, but the Bills haven’t yet proven they deserve to be on the same level as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Kansas City Chiefs, or Los Angeles Rams. And yet, Vegas has priced them above all three proven champions.
It might be scary to place this wager, but here’s why the Bills will go under their season win total this year.
The Bills have the highest win total in the NFL
The Bills have been pegged as the team to beat heading into the 2022-23 NFL season. After losing to the Chiefs in the AFC Divisional Round in one of the most thrilling playoff games we’ve ever seen, Buffalo will enter the new season as the +600 favorite to win the Super Bowl.
As for the win total market, the Bills are also on top with an over/under of 11.5 (FanDuel). Tom Brady’s Buccaneers are the only other team in the league with a season win total that high.
If you like the over for Buffalo, you’ll need to pay a juice of -135 ($135 bet nets $100). The under comes back at +115.
Why the Bills will go under their season win total of 11.5
There’s a lot to be excited about this year if you’re a Buffalo fan. The Bills bring back most of the roster that was 13 seconds away from reaching its second straight AFC Championship Game, and the addition of Von Miller should only improve a defense that allowed the fewest yards in the NFL last season.
But no one’s talking about the concerns surrounding this team.
The Bills lost their second- and third-leading wide receivers in Emmanuel Sanders and Cole Beasley this offseason. Everyone is expecting 23-year-old Gabriel Davis to fill the void after his four-touchdown explosion against Kansas City in the playoffs, but that was one game. If you take out that one performance, Davis has never caught more than five passes or recorded more than 107 yards in a single game in two seasons. This WR group is a clear downgrade from last year’s.
The running backs, led by Devin Singletary and rookie James Cook, don’t inspire much confidence. Buffalo will need Allen to once again be its most efficient rusher, but that will open up the possibility of injury.
As for the defense, star cornerback Tre’Davious White will begin the season on the PUP list and miss at least the first four games. That isn’t great news considering the Bills play the Rams, Titans, Dolphins, and Ravens to start the year.
Miller is a splashy pickup for Buffalo, but he isn’t the same player who made eight Pro Bowls in his first nine NFL seasons. He recorded just 9.5 sacks last year, which marked the third-lowest total of his career. Miller is now 33 years old, and I don’t expect him to have the game-changing impact he’s expected to bring to this defense.
And what about the schedule? The Bills could easily go 5-1 in the AFC East, but they drew the Rams, Ravens, Chiefs, Packers, Vikings, and Bengals outside the division. That stretch has 2-4 or 1-5 written all over it.
With Allen under center, the Bills have won more than 11 games just once. Now, they’ve moved from the hunter to the hunted, and I’m expecting them to fall short of expectations with a massive target on their back.
Take the under 11.5 wins.
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