The Buffalo Bills took the sixth and final AFC playoff spot on Sunday night, thanks to their win over the Miami Dolphins and the Cincinnati Bengals’ win over the Baltimore Ravens.
It is the first time since the 1999 season that the Bills are in the postseason, ending what had been the longest active playoff drought among teams in the big four professional American sports leagues.
The Bills had to wait to see if they’d get a ticket to the dance – they wrapped up their win over the Dolphins in Florida before the Bengals-Ravens game had ended. Had the Ravens been able to pull out a win, they would have taken the six seed and Buffalo would have been knocked out.
The Bills won, 22-16, enduring Miami’s comeback – Buffalo led, 19-0, in the third quarter – and getting beloved defensive lineman Kyle Williams a touchdown in the process, giving him the ball on offense for a carry from the 1.
Then Cincinnati scored with 44 seconds to play, on a 49-yard pass from Andy Dalton to Tyler Boyd, the defense did its job when the Ravens got the ball back, and the Bills players and their, shall we say, colorful fans, the #BillsMafia, were able to celebrate.
As it happened, a fair number of them were at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, and dozens of them gathered in one of the stadium’s concourses to watch the end of the Ravens game. One fan posted the celebration on Twitter:
And Buffalo posted video from inside the locker room of the moment the players realized they were headed to the postseason; front and center is 12-year veteran Williams, who has spent his entire career with the franchise, and will finally get to play a meaningful January game:
The Bills also thanked the Bengals, and said they’d be sending some of the city’s famous Buffalo wings as a token of their appreciation:
The Bills will travel to Jacksonville to play their former coach, Doug Marrone, and the Jaguars, in the wildcard round next Sunday at 1 p.m. ET.
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