Poll results: Bills heading to the playoffs

July, 22, 2012
7/22/12
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It turns out I'm not the only one high on the Buffalo Bills after a stellar offseason.

In our latest AFC East poll, an overwhelming majority of our community voted Buffalo to win nine to 11 games this season. That most likely will be good enough to earn a wild card in the AFC; an 11-5 record might even push the New England Patriots for a division title.

Here was reaction from our community:
  • BrettinLakeWorth writes: Ten wins, maybe 11. Playoffs. Not that they will be easy wins. Looking back at last year and picking through the losses, I'm hard pressed to find 5 that I can say the new acquisitions automatically would have translated to wins had they been on the team last year. So 11 would be tough I think.
  • JustBusiness21 writes: Ten or 11 wins, assuming the core remains healthy for the majority of the season. Good thing there is a deep bench at almost every position.
  • Dinedal7 writes: Football Outsiders has the over/under for the Bills win total at 9.7. I think that's about right as far as expectations, but as a long-suffering Bills fan I would be very happy with nine.

Buffalo has the 29th-toughest schedule in the NFL this season. So that is in the team’s favor to improve on last year’s 6-10 record. I think one of the biggest barometers this season will be the Week 1 matchup at the divisional-rival New York Jets. The Bills can make a statement that they are legit right away by beating the Jets on the road. A loss would lead to early skepticism.

But I think the Bills look closer to "contenders" than "pretenders," and our SportsNation poll shows our AFC East community agrees.

James Walker | email

ESPN Miami Dolphins reporter

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