Bills vs Patriots: Five players to watch

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Oct 12, 2014; Orchard Park, NY, USA; Buffalo Bills defensive tackle

Kyle Williams

(95) hits New England Patriots quarterback

Tom Brady

(12) after a pass during the second half at Ralph Wilson Stadium. New England beats Buffalo 37 to 22. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

Five players to keep an eye on when the Buffalo Bills face the New England Patriots in week two

It doesn’t get much bigger than Bills vs Patriots for Buffalo sports fans. With Indianapolis out of the way, Rex Ryan’s troops must now face the team which destroyed the Colts 45-7 in last season’s AFC Championship game.

(Let’s be honest – regardless of your opinion on “Deflategate”, Andrew Luck and the Colts never had a chance in New England.)

You could argue that the Bills vs Patriots is a contender for game of the week. Regardless, Buffalo faces a daunting task, as they look to prove they’re for real.

Forget the fact they’re taking on the reigning Super Bowl champions. The Bills have struggled against the Patriots, ever since Bill Belichick took over as head coach, in 2000.

New England has a staggering 26-4 record in that time-span. This includes a record of 13-2 in Buffalo, by an average score of 28-15.

However, all hope is not lost, as Ryan has a history of (some) success against Tom Brady and company, during his time coaching the New York Jets. Yes, the Patriots still won nine of the 13 matchups, but it’s worth noting Brady’s average QBR during those six seasons was 61 against the Jets, compared to 73 versus the rest of the league.

Overall, if the Bills are going to have any hope of challenging for the AFC East this season, they need to beat the Pats at home. Here are five players to keep an eye on during Sunday afternoon. (I’ve not included Tom Brady, purely because it’s a given everyone will be watching him.)

Next: The Bills X-factor