Near the end of his press conference on Thursday, Bills head coach Sean McDermott was asked about his team being 14-point underdogs ahead of their game with the Patriots on Monday Night Football.
McDermott paused for a moment, smiled and then gave a chuckle.
“Is that new,” he said. “I mean, last year, this year, I don’t think that’s new. For all intents and purposes they were in the Super Bowl last year and have won the division ‘x’ amount of years.
“I’ve been in this position before, and until you beat them, they’re going to be favored. That’s how it works so we have to earn every part of it.”
The Bill are no stranger to being counted out. They were 17-point dogs against the Vikings in Week 3 and then stunned Minnesota 27-6.
“I think the day I stepped into the locker room, no, even not being on this football team knowing the Buffalo Bills don’t get a lot of respect outside of this locker room,” added safety Micah Hyde of being underdogs ahead of Monday night.
“From the national media, even from some of the local media. It is what it is. Once you get inside this bubble, you realize how big of a knock on the Bills some people make it. At the end of the day we can only control what we can control.”
While oddsmakers haven’t been kind to the Bills, neither has history.
After losing to the Patriots 25-24 in September of 2009, the Bills went six years before being back on Monday Night Football. They also lost to New England 20-13 in November of 2015.
In 2016 Buffalo traveled to Seattle and fell to the Seahawks, 31-25, marking the sixth straight game the Bills had lost on Monday night.
Meanwhile, Tom Brady has become a staple and will be appearing on ‘MNF’ for the 23rd time in his career. He’s 15-7 all-time in those game.
Brady is also 28-3 all-time against the Bills and has won five straight.
“They execute well,” defensive end Jerry Hughes said. “They know their game plan, from the offensive line, to 12, back to the running backs. They work well as a unit. They work very fluently. It’s about us getting his timing off, really making Tom move his feet as much as possible and see how well he can throw on the run.”
“He’s played at the highest level of football, played in multiple Super Bowls and he’s seen almost every defensive formation,” added safety Jordan Poyer. “It’ll come down to us doing our job better than they do their job. He’s a great quarterback and he has some great players around him. We’re going to have to play well to win.”