The AFC East has been ran by the New England Patriots for nearly two decades now. Their dominance has culminated in six super bowl championships, nine conference championships and 16 AFC East titles in the past 19 season including every season since 2009. That’s an amazing streak for a team that has arguably the best football player of all-time in Tom Brady but has gone through plenty of skill players on both sides of the football to surround Brady with.
So what’s up with the rest of the division? Well the Buffalo Bills, Miami Dolphins and New York Jets have all been lacking the two most important things that the Patriots have: Great coaching and consistent quarterback play. The New York Jets even made one the most boneheaded decisions this past offseason in signing Adam Gase as their head coach. It was a retractive move due to the fact that he failed as head coach of the Miami Dolphins, so the Jets know a thing or two about his futility as a coach. The Bills made the playoffs in 2017 after not making the playoffs for 18 full seasons prior to that and what do they do after? Cut starting quarterback Tyrod Taylor who endured a couple of seasons of being on the playoff cusp before pushing them over the edge. We haven’t even discussed the Dolphins big boneheaded move: Trading for QB Josh Rosen. Would I trade draft picks for a former first round quarterback who threw more interceptions than touchdowns and led the worst offense in the league last season? Absolutely not, but I’m not an NFL GM for a reason.
So who is the second best team in the AFC East? We’ll rank the teams from second to worst below.
Make no mistake about the Bills they are a talented team and annually have a top 15 defense. Last year’s number six ranked defense loses longtime defensive tackle Kyle Williams to retirement however they still have enough pieces there to be a top defense especially with the addition of former Houston DT Ed Oliver in the draft. 2018 first round pick Tre White had a great season while being inserted in as the number one cornerback on a team that had a hole to fill after trading Stephon Gilmore to the Patriots (Go figure)
On the offensive side of the ball, second-year pro quarterback Josh Allen is expected to take more command of the offense and be more of an impact player from here on out. LeSean McCoy’s days in the backfield may be numbered as they brought in Frank Gore and drafted David Singletary out of FAU in the draft, so don’t expect a loss of McCoy to slow down what is a top 5 rushing attack in the league.
New York Jets
The Jets have had the best offseason of any team in the AFC East so far with the acquisitions of RB LeVeon Bell, LB C.J. Moseley & DT Quinnen Williams.