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Thursday Thought: A meaningless week 17 has a different meaning this year

The Buffalo Bills have a meaningless week 17 but this time it has nothing to do with next seasons chores.



Ed Oliver

As the 2019 regular season wraps up, the Buffalo Bills will have a meaningless week 17 contest against the division rival New York Jets. However, this year’s meaningless week 17 game is different than in years past. While usually week 17 meant hoping for a Bills loss to secure a better draft pick, this year, it’s a little different.

The Bills clinched a playoff berth already, something they haven’t experienced since 1999. For the past 20 years, there have been only two times that week 17 had any meaning left for the Bills. In 2004 and 2017, which were both nine-win Bills teams hoping they could sneak into the playoffs. The outcomes of those weeks were a bit different.

This is something that we as Bills fans haven’t experienced in a long time or for the younger Bills fans (like myself) have never experienced ever. The Bills are playing a meaningless week 17 game because they’re in the postseason. This is this week’s Thursday Thought: A meaningless week 17 has a different meaning this year.

New York Jets vs Buffalo Bills Week 17 NFL Game Preview (Credit to NFL)

Instead of seeing a bunch of random young players trying to prove if they can be worthy of a training camp roster spot for next year, or a coach getting an “audition” at being the next head coach (a.k.a Anthony Lynn). The Bills can just rest their starters and prepare for the playoffs.

So what should Bills fans think of this game? What’s should we look for? The answer to these questions is simple: Nothing.

Nov 28, 2019; Arlington, TX, USA; Buffalo Bills running back Devin Singletary (26) celebrates a touchdown with quarterback Josh Allen (17) in the second quarter against the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sport

The Bills are good this season and might even win a playoff game. For week 17 just enjoy the day. Relax and celebrate this season. There is nothing to stress about whatsoever. This year there is no audition for players or coaches, or draft position at play either.

Take it all in and maybe get used to it. This is a sign of a team in the right direction. Week 17 should rarely have meaning to it and for the Bills, this is the start of a new era. Let’s get ready for Houston or Kansas City or whoever will have to face our Buffalo Bills in the wild card.

Mitch Broder is a contributor for The Buffalo Fanatics. To contact him, email him at or on Twitter @mitchell_broder