The NFL is moving forward to finalize plans for a 17-game regular season in 2021, according to The Washington Post. That proposal has been expected to pass for some time now, and it will also include a reduction of preseason games from four to three each summer.
In fitting in that extra regular season game, longtime NFL writer Peter King from NBC Sports provided some context on how it would look for each team, including the Bills. Per King, the extra game will be a cross-conference meeting from two years ago… meaning for the Bills it’ll be a NFC East opponent.
Like other cross-divisional matchups, teams will play the club that finished in the same place as them from the year prior. Buffalo won the AFC East for the first time in 25 seasons, and that could slate a matchup with the Washington Football Team in 2021.
Despite a 7-9 record, they won the NFC East.
When the NFL was choosing options, the formula that prevailed—follow me now—was AFC versus NFC, cross-conference matchup from two years ago, 2021 matchup based on 2020 standings. Now that you’re totally confused, here’s an example: The four AFC West teams played the four NFC North teams in 2019. In 2020, Kansas City finished in first place in the AFC West, Green Bay first in the NFC North. So in 2021, it’s AFC West against NFC North, and 1-versus-1 from ’20 becomes Green Bay versus Kansas City.
The 17th game has not fully crossed the finish line just yet. Stay tuned to Bills Wire for when that announcement becomes official.
If King’s report does pan out, Buffalo head coach Sean McDermott would be going head-to-head against another one of his mentors. Former Panthers head coach Ron Rivera just completed his first season in Washington in 2020.
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