Colts vs Bills: Week 1 Overview and Prediction


The Indianapolis Colts travel to upstate New York this week where they will be taking on newly-appointed head coach Rex Ryan and the Buffalo Bills. The Colts hope to start the season off with a fresh 1-0 start, and hope to prove that this is their year to win the Super Bowl.

The Bills on the other hand are coming off of a 9-7 record and appear to be trending upwards as a team with hopes that Rex Ryan can take them to the next step. Here we take a look at the Sunday afternoon matchup between the two:

Key Offseason Losses/Additions (Buffalo Bills):

Aside from hiring Rex Ryan to take over as the team’s new head coach, the Bills acquired quarterback Tyrod Taylor via free agency, who has been announced as the starting QB. The team also beefed up the offensive line and added depth to the receiving game with the signings of Richie Incognito and Percy Harvin respectfully. Buffalo lost C.J. Spiller due to free agency but perhaps further strengthened the position when they traded for LeSean McCoy earlier in the year.

Key Offseason Losses/Additions (Indianapolis Colts):

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There’s not a great deal of explaining needed in terms of the Colt’s top offseason acquisitions. They acquired veteran offensive threats in

Frank Gore


Andre Johnson

, as well as using a first-round pick on receiver

Phillip Dorsett

out of Miami. Free agent guard

Todd Herremans

was signed in hopes of shoring up the offensive line. On the defensive side of the ball, the team added more veterans in

Trent Cole

and and

Kendall Langford

. Safety

Dwight Lowery

was also brought in as a free agent to play alongside

Mike Adams

. Perhaps the Colt’s most notable departure was the team choosing to not re-sign longtime receiver

Reggie Wayne

after a major drop-off in production throughout 2014.

Evaluating Key Skill Positions For Each Team:

Indianapolis Colts:

Quarterback: Andrew Luck, Matt Hasselbeck

WR1: Andre Johnson, Donte Moncrief

WR2: T.Y. Hilton, Phillip Dorsett, Griff Whalen

TE: Dwayne Allen, Coby Fleener, Jack Doyle

RB: Frank Gore, Vick Ballard, Josh Robinson, Tyler Varga

Buffalo Bills:

Quarterback: Tyrod Taylor, Matt Cassell, EJ Manuel

WR1: Sammy Watkins, Chris Hogan, Marcus Easley

WR2: Percy Harvin, Robert Woods, Marquise Goodwin, Marcus Thigpen

TE: Charles Clay, MarQueis Gray

RB: LeSean McCoy, Boobie Dixon, Karlos Williams, Bryce Brown

On paper, the Colts have the advantage at almost every skill position except running back. While Frank Gore has been known as a power-back for the majority of his NFL career, some have to wonder if he can keep up the consistency he has shown at the ripe age of 32. LeSean McCoy on the other hand is coming off of a year in 2014 in which he rushed for 1,319 yards on 312 carries and at the age of 27, doesn’t appear to be slowing down anytime soon.

Containing McCoy in this matchup could be a difficult task for the Colts, who have always had a problem of stopping the run and will be opening the season with two rookies along the defensive side of the ball with David Parry and Henry Anderson. A defensive line that lost Arthur Jones to an ankle injury and appears to be the weakest unit of this Colts team heading into the opener.

The Prediction:

This game will certainly be a dogfight. You have one of the top offenses in the NFL going up against one of the best defensive units in Buffalo (a defense that ranked 4th overall in 2014). At the end of the day however, the Bills still have questions that linger at the quarterback position, with Tyrod Taylor making his first career start on Sunday.

That factor could well end up being what decides the outcome in this game. I predict the Colts to walk out of Ralph Wilson Stadium victorious and start their season off with a 1-0 record.

Colts: 24; Buffalo: 17