The Falcons play their second-to-last game of the season against the Buffalo Bills. As we all know, Atlanta’s been at their best on the road in the 2021 season, winning most of their games there. Will they be able to pull off an upset against one of the AFC’s best teams today and keep their slim playoff hopes alive, not to mention get back to .500?
If they do, as we’ve written and said throughout the week, it will be the single most impressive thing they’ve done this season. Buffalo is one of the best offenses and defenses in the league when they’re on, and they’re trying to enhance their playoff seeding with a win today. It’ll take the Falcons at their very best, even though they’re down several players including starting safety Jaylinn Hawkins.
Here are our predictions for the game ahead. Once you’ve checked them out, please share yours.
Falcons 17 - Bills 28
Buffalo is a confusing team. They’re 3rd in the league in takeaways but aren’t particularly good at rushing the passer. They’ve beat teams like the Patriots but lost to the Jaguars. They’re not an unbeatable team, but playing in Buffalo is going to be a challenge for Atlanta. If the Falcons can get the run game going, this could be closer than some would expect. However, the Falcons just can’t be trusted against good teams and this trend will probably continue on Sunday. Bills dominate at home. - David Walker
Falcons 13 - Bills 27
Buffalo is far from a perfect team, but they’re a very good one. They’ve rebounded from a midseason slump and are right back to looking like one of the AFC’s biggest contenders. The Bills offense hasn’t been as deadly this season, particularly on the ground, but the defense could easily be the best in the league. That’s a big problem for an Atlanta offense that struggles to even score 20 on a good day. There’s still a chance that the Falcons can pull off the upset if they play a nearly perfect game—I just don’t think it’s particularly likely. - Kevin Knight
Falcons 20 - Bills 31
This is one of two games I’ve had penciled in as nearly certain losses all season long, and while the loss to Jacksonville shook my faith in Buffalo a bit, everything that’s happened since then has only reaffirmed how tough this game is going to be. The Falcons are shorthanded with multiple players on the reserve/COVID-19 list, playing their coldest game of the year in what certainly looks like at least first half snow, and they’re coming up against a Bills team with a ton to play for and terrific talent on both sides of the ball. I’m hoping for the miraculous upset, of course, but that’s exactly what a win would be today. -Dave Choate