At this point, one simply cannot dispute that Josh Allen is an elite quarterback. A hard pill to swallow for some Buffalo Bills fans is that he isn’t the only one. I understand the angle; we’ve waited a long time for a player this good and he has a case to be called the best in the NFL. Still, fans should not blind ourselves to the fact that, whilst our quarterback is one of the best, we cannot simply trash other elite players to raise him up. The road to the top is not littered with the tombstones of other talented players, but the celebration of our own.
The Source Of Our Misery
Must we tear at the career of Reggie White, who sported 198 career sacks, in order to appreciate Bruce Smith’s 200? Not at all. Why then must we do this with Josh Allen? The answer, to me, seems clear. The Buffalo Bills of the ‘90s experienced a stretch of dominance nearly unmatched in NFL history. With such dominance comes unprecedented security. Few teams were as great as those Buffalo Bills of old, and both fans and players alike know this to be true.
In the years following that incredible era, the toughest period of Buffalo Bills history dawned upon us. “The Drought” may have had its highlights, but it became expected of the Buffalo Bills that they would adorn the basement of the league with their uninspiring banners. For the fans, the same could be said. No longer was there an argument over who was the best; we knew it wasn’t us. Year after year, we didn’t truly expect things to get better. Greatness was a question, a curiosity. Never was it a demand.
With Josh Allen’s leap to stardom came a wave of confidence that we hadn’t experienced in over two decades. Still, the dark ages of Buffalo Bills history haunt the backs of our minds. Buffalo no longer has a reputation for quality, nor the expectation for success. Fans that come to terms with our newfound greatness can still hold onto the days in the pit. Like crabs in a bucket, fan conversation was dominated by people pulling down others to prove our players’ own worth. We are at the top of the heap now. We don’t need to prove Josh Allen’s talent to anyone, and we can let this team speak for itself.
Respect For Greatness In Other Places
So, let us spend the rest of this article appreciating some AFC quarterbacks who are often attacked and swiped at by Bills fans, often undeservingly. These are a few players who we should pay respect to, regardless of how we feel about their comparison to our own legendary gunslinger. Allen is elite, but he’s not alone.
Justin Herbert has accomplished a great deal in his two NFL seasons, as Buffalo Fanatics’ own Trish Patel summarizes below.
He was one of the best quarterbacks to miss out on the playoffs last season, and he played like he deserved to be there.
It’s easy to attack Lamar, but his ability on the field throws a wrench into almost every opposing defense out there. Criticize his play style if you must, but this quarterback is a unique talent who earned a unanimous MVP. Last season, he experienced a lot of issues, both with his own body taking hits and his teammates dropping like flies. But expect him to return to his usual antics this season.
Burrow may not have been the best quarterback during his 2021/22 playoff run, but he was still great. One could argue that Josh Allen deserved that opportunity more and could have won the Super Bowl, but it shouldn’t detract from the fact that, after less than two seasons, Burrow overcame a terrible offensive line to lead his offense to the big show. Wins aren’t a QB stat, but his grit and poise in the face of massive pressure (both mentally and on the field) must be commended.
One thing remains true after all of this, however: You can’t pay me to like Tom Brady.
Featured Image: NBC Sports