OK, so by now, most fans have seen this subjective list assembled by NFL.com's Marc Ross. You know, the one that has the Bills ranked fifth among the most complete teams heading into the 2021 season?
Assuming the ranking is accurate, this is good news and bad news for the Bills.
Good news because they rank so high. Bad news because three of the teams above them are in the AFC, including the Kansas City Chiefs, who beat them for the AFC championship last year, and the Cleveland Browns, who may well have beaten the Chiefs in the divisional round the week before had the officials delivered the right call on a penalty they either missed or simply didn't have the courage to make when Daniel Sorensen egregiously targeted Rashard Higgins, initiating helmet-to-helmet contact that caused a fumble out of the end zone (and a turnover).
So, good as the Bills may be, seems the AFC is loaded and every rival in their division has made improvements.
But so did the Bills.
In addition to being able to keep one of the best offensive lines in the league together, the Bills were able to replace departed wide receiver John Brown with Emmanuel Sanders, sign speedy running back Matt Breida and add tight end Jacob Hollister and some competent veteran depth pieces on the line.
And that was just on an offense that features two wide receivers (Stefon Diggs and Cole Beasley) coming off All-Pro seasons and a quarterback (Josh Allen) who was second in the MVP voting.
They used their first two draft picks this year on defensive ends Gregory Rousseau and Carlos Basham, kept valuable linebacker Matt Milano from departing in free agency and expect to be helped up front by the return of defensive tackle Star Lotulelei, who opted out of last season because of COVID-19.
Their defensive backfield is loaded, with cornerback Tre'Davious White and safeties Jordan Poyer and Micah Hyde.
More food for thought: NFL.com's Adam Schein last year ranked the most complete teams heading into 2020.
No. 5 on the list was the Tampa Bay Bucs, who went on to win the Super Bowl. No. 1 was the Baltimore Ravens, who were eliminated in the playoffs by the Bills, who were No. 6.
Which brings up one final thought: Things can change. The 2021 season hasn't started yet, and if the Bills can add, say, free-agent cornerback Steven Nelson and/or trade for Eagles tight end Zach Ertz, an argument could be made that they would be as complete as a team can get in the salary cap era.