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2011 Buffalo Bills Odds | Preview | Picks

2011 Buffalo Bills Team Preview | NFL Predictions

The loss to the New York Jets in Week 17 capped another lousy season for the Bills, who were trying to win their regular-season finale in consecutive years for the first time since 1998-2000.

2011 Buffalo Bills Team Preview/Predictions
2010 Record: 4-12
ATS Record: 8-7-1

Buffalo missed the playoffs for the 11th straight year, tied with Detroit for the NFL’s longest active drought.

Buffalo also closed the season by scoring 17 points or fewer in six straight games; adding insult to injury, Buffalo has lost 15 of its last 18 divisional games overall.

For another season, the Bills are plainly in a transition period. Head coach Chan Gailey has been able to squeeze a lot of offensive production out of a team that seems to have little talent. That probably starts and finishes with quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick, who played as well as you could expect last season given the weapons he had around him.

Stevie Johnson emerged as a downfield threat for Buffalo and Fred Jackson served as a useful running back. Despite their deficiencies at tackle, the Bills’ interior line played above its expectations; the line was headlined by center Eric Wood and guard Andy Levitre.

On the defensive side of the ball, Kyle Williams is among the best defensive linemen in the league, but like most Buffalo players, he doesn’t get that much attention because the team is so bad. The Bills also have a solid depth at cornerback with Terrence McGhee and Leodis McKelvin.

Here are some of the urgent issues facing Buffalo this season, as a struggling franchise tries to do something, anything, to avoid the AFC East cellar.

On defense, the Bills couldn’t decide whether to play a 3-4 or 4-3. To help Kyle Williams up front, the cursed Bills used their draft pick – third overall – on Marcell Dareus from Alabama.

Buffalo still needs defensive lineman Torell Troupe to reach his potential and possibly move to nose tackle so that Williams and Dareus can play on the ends. Buffalo inked Shawn Merriman, rolling the dice on a player that has not been dominant in years. Also, the addition of linebacker Nick Barnett will be crucial to the Bills’ cause. [soliloquy id=”82219″]

For the offense, the biggest concern is at offensive tackle. The front office seems to not realize what the rest of the football world does: Tackle is the most important position in the sport. When the Bills do get a good tackle, they almost always appear on the defensive line, not the offensive line.

Also, Buffalo needs to get more production out of C.J. Spiller. The Bills drafted Spiller very high in last year’s draft and they are looking for a breakout year from the explosive running back in his second campaign as a professional.

It’s not an industry secret to say the least, but the Bills have a lot of work to do in order to compete in the tough AFC East. Unless they can land a lot of big-time free agents, the Bills are destined for another year in the basement of the AFC East.

2011 Bills Futures

Super Bowl Odds: +12550
Conference Odds: +6050
AFC East Odds: +545
2011-2012 NFL Regular Season Wins: Under 5.5

2011 Bills Predictions:

Place they’ll finish in AFC East: 4th
Place they’ll finish in AFC Conference: 14th

Over/Under Wins Prediction: UNDER

With NFL football just a short time away, Cappers Picks Football handicappers have been hard at work putting out the team by team NFL previews for those of us who can’t wait.

Bet on the 2011 SuperBowl winner, plus Conference and Divisional winners.

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About Dave Golokhov AKA Vegas Dave

Dave Golokhov has written for Playboy.com, BETUS Sportsbook, Sportsfanmagazine.com, FOX, Askmen.com, Sports-central, and the FOXSports.com Funhouse.