For the past two decades, the New England Patriots have reigned over their AFC East rivals. With the Buffalo Bills clinching the division this season, the AFC East appears to be evolving into the Bills’ division. For many years, Tom Brady and Bill Belichick terrorized their division rivals. With the breakup of arguably the best quarterback-coach duo of all time, the AFC East is on a fast track towards change.
With every NFL franchise’s downfall in power comes an uprising from another promising team. This team is the Buffalo Bills. Quarterback Josh Allen has proved this season that he is the real deal, and possibly a future top 3 quarterback in the league. This offseason, the Bills made a move to sign wide receiver Stefon Diggs, which has proven to be an excellent choice. Diggs has racked up 111 catches worth 1,314 yards so far this season. Combining the offensive talent with a proven head coach in Sean McDermott makes the Bills a threat for years to come.
Another rising franchise is the Miami Dolphins. Rookie quarterback Tua Tagovailoa has earned playing time along the way this year while competing with veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick. While only playing in 5 games, Tua has tallied 10 passing touchdowns with just 2 interceptions. His talent was highly coveted coming out of college and this doesn’t change for next season. Tua’s high ceiling provides endless capabilities for the future of the Dolphins. Head coach Brian Flores is quickly becoming one of the best head coaches that were once Patriots’ coaching assistants.
Next up is the New England Patriots. Their future depends on many things falling into place this offseason. Drafting a young quarterback, adding talent to the receiving core, and improving the defensive line are all important pieces. However, you can never underestimate the mastermind of a head coach in Bill Belichick.
Finally, the last team to discuss is the New York Jets. After recently losing the 1st overall pick in the coming offseason’s draft, the Jets are left wondering when their bad luck will end. Making the correct front office decisions and having a strong free agency will factor into the Jets success next year. Without many changes this offseason, they most likely will not improve next season.
The future of the AFC East is bright. The Bills have everything needed for a long reign of the division, however the Dolphins and Patriots will definitely make it tough. These three teams will still need superior leadership to get them to the Super Bowl. Each AFC East team has the chance to greatly improve and become a league power in the coming years.