This article is part of our Team Previews series.
While many of the other teams in the league are working through complex new installations on offense and defense, coach Sean McDermott and QB Josh Allen approach their sixth season together tweaking the details and iterating on concepts that have already proven to be successful. This continuity alone is a major advantage for the Bills. Combine that with a deep defense and a number of talented playmakers on offense, and you have a formidable squad that should challenge for a championship.
2023 Buffalo Bills Quarterback Room
Plenty of franchises in the NFL are looking for a long-term answer at quarterback. The Bills aren't one of them. Josh Allen is a dynamic competitor with one of the strongest arms in the league and exceptional rushing ability as well. He's been remarkably consistent over the past three seasons, topping 4,000 yards and notching between 35 and 37 passing touchdowns during that span. Allen also collected 762 yards and seven scores on the ground in 2022. He has a lot of ways to beat opposing defenses.
Still just 27 years old, Allen clearly is entering his prime, which is a scary prospect. While he has yet to win an MVP award, it seems obvious that one or more such honors are in his future considering his trajectory. With Keenum gone, Kyle Allen (no relation) is slated to serve as the team's top backup. The 27-year-old has some starting experience, including two games with the Texans last year, but ideally he won't see the field much this coming season. Rounding out Buffalo's QB room is Matt Barkley.
2023 Buffalo Bills Backfield
- Veteran Additions: Damien Harris (from Patriots), Latavius Murray (from Broncos)
- Draft Picks: None
- Departures: Devin Singletary (to Texans)
James Cook spent his rookie year backing up Singletary, the latter of whom left via free agency this offseason. Though the 2022 second-rounder logged only 89 carries, Cook yielded 507 yards at 5.7 YPC, while catching 21 of his 32 targets. Overall, the Georgia product showed excellent production with limited chances. Cook now is the favorite to be the Bills' top running back, but he has company in the backfield in the form of veterans Harris and Murray.
Harris, who produced with the Patriots in 2021 (15 TDs in as many games), is the obvious choice to be Cook's top competition for touches, even though he had a down 2022 season while missing six games due to injury. Murray is the oldest member of the trio, having turned 33 in January, but he can't be dismissed. He's been consistently productive throughout his career and turned in another solid campaign last fall with 760 rushing yards and six total TDs in 13 contests. Nyheim Hines, who had been in the mix for change-of-pace work, is expected to miss the season due to a knee injury, creating a void that the Bills figure to fill in the coming weeks.
2023 Buffalo Bills Receiving Corps
- Veteran Additions: WRs Trent Sherfield (from Dolphins), Deonte Harty (from Saints)
- Draft Picks: TE Dalton Kincaid (Rd. 1, No. 25 – Utah); WR Justin Shorter (Rd. 5, No. 150 – Florida)
- Departures: WRs Isaiah McKenzie (to Colts), Jamison Crowder (to Giants), Cole Beasley (to Giants)
On the heels of a 2022 campaign in which he put up 1,429 receiving yards and a career-high 11 touchdowns, Stefon Diggs remains the unquestioned leader of the Bills pass-catching corps. Since joining the team in March 2020, he's had three straight Pro-Bowl seasons. A big part of Diggs' success is the confidence that coach Sean McDermott and quarterback Josh Allen have in him, resulting in 160.6 targets per season during that stretch.
No. 2 on the depth chart is Gabe Davis. The 6-2, 225-pounder set career highs of 48 receptions and 836 yards last year, but those numbers were considered disappointing by many. He'll still be relied upon, however, and has a chance to break out in his fourth season. The rest of Buffalo's receiver room is unsettled with a number of players competing for targets.
Added in free agency were Sherfield, a journeyman, and Harty, a return specialist. Also in the mix for snaps are 2022 fifth-round pick Khalil Shakir and Shorter. Shakir profiles as a slot receiver, and Shorter (ironically) is a big-bodied target at 6-4. Meanwhile, tight end Dawson Knox will remain a notable option for Allen but could lose some volume to Kincaid.
2023 Buffalo Bills Sleepers
⬆️ Sleeper: Dalton Kincaid
The Bills already have a good tight end in Dawson Knox, so is Kincaid just a rookie backup? Well, not really because he's a different type of player than the rugged blocker and red-zone threat that Knox is. The Utah product's quickness and body control could put him in more of a slot receiver role, which figures to keep him involved when the team utilizes two-TE sets. If Knox misses time for any reason, Kincaid could step in and make a fantasy splash in a Josh Allen-helmed offense.
😴 Super Sleeper: Damien Harris
Harris signed a one-year deal with the Bills this offseason without much fanfare. After a strong 2021 effort for New England, Harris fell back to earth last season, recording 462 rushing yards and three scores in 11 games. He should be able carve out a clear role in Buffalo, though, provided he can stay healthy. While Harris, who's bulkier than likely starter James Cook, isn't nearly the same threat as a receiver that Cook is, he figures to see his share of snaps in short yardage and goal-line formations.
2023 Buffalo Bills Coaching Staff
Head Coach: Sean McDermott (Year 7)
Offensive Coordinator: Ken Dorsey (Year 2) – Spread offense with Erhardt-Perkins terminology
Defensive Coordinator: None – 4-3 scheme
2023 Buffalo Bills Depth Chart
Kicker: Tyler Bass
Stats to Know for the Buffalo Bills
2022 Record: 9-8
2022 Points Scored: 455 (4th)
2022 Points Allowed: 286 (2nd)
2022 Point Differential: +169 (2nd)
2022 Run-Play Rate: 40.6 percent (22nd)
2022 Offensive Snaps: 1,037 (23rd)
2022 PFF O-Line Ranking: No. 23
2023 Buffalo Bills Schedule
|1||Sep 11||at New York Jets||8:15 PM|
|2||Sep 17||Las Vegas Raiders||1:00 PM|
|3||Sep 24||at Washington Commanders||1:00 PM|
|4||Oct 1||Miami Dolphins||1:00 PM|
|5||Oct 8||Jacksonville Jaguars||9:30 AM|
|6||Oct 15||New York Giants||8:20 PM|
|7||Oct 22||at New England Patriots||1:00 PM|
|8||Oct 26||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||8:15 PM|
|9||Nov 5||at Cincinnati Bengals||8:20 PM|
|10||Nov 13||Denver Broncos||8:15 PM|
|11||Nov 19||New York Jets||4:25 PM|
|12||Nov 26||at Philadelphia Eagles||4:25 PM|
|14||Dec 10||at Kansas City Chiefs||4:25 PM|
|15||Dec 17||Dallas Cowboys||4:25 PM|
|16||Dec 23||at Los Angeles Chargers||8:00 PM|
|17||Dec 31||New England Patriots||1:00 PM|
|18||TBD||at Miami Dolphins||TBD|
Buffalo Bills Odds To Win Super Bowl LVIII
- Bills Super Bowl 58 Odds: 9-1
Odds via DraftKings Sportsbook as of 6:00 PM ET on July 22, 2023.