EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) — The Buffalo Bills are in noteworthy territory for the franchise — and they acknowledge they’re still a long way from where they want to finish.

The AFC-leading Bills are 6-1 for the eighth time in team history. And it’s the first time since 1993, when the Jim Kelly-led team ended up going to its fourth straight Super Bowl.

A victory Sunday against the division rival New York Jets (5-3) would mark just the seventh time the Bills have won at least seven of their first eight games, which they also did in 1993.

“Yeah, you’ve got to win your division games,” quarterback Josh Allen said. “That’s rule No. 1. Coach (Sean) McDermott preaches winning at home and winning your division games. It’s something we’ve got to do.”

McDermott’s team is 0-1 against the AFC East, having lost at Miami in Week 3. The Bills know better than to overlook a surprising Jets team that had a four-game winning streak snapped last Sunday against New England.

“Going into a hostile environment in New York — or New Jersey — playing a team that’s playing really well, playing some good football,” Allen said. “They’re extremely well-coached, they’re very well-disciplined. It’s no easy task to play away and it’s no easy task to play in division. We have to put our best foot forward.”

That’s an unsettling thought, considering how well the Bills have played lately.

Buffalo is powered by the Allen-led offense that ranks first overall in the NFL and a defense that is third overall and has allowed 98 points in seven games — the fewest in the league.

The Bills have a chance to become the third team in history to average at least 425 yards of offense per game and allow fewer than 300 yards per game on defense through its first eight games, joining the 2010 Chargers and 2007 Patriots.

“Probably the most complete football team we’ll see all season,” Jets coach Robert Saleh said. “Offense, defense, special teams, they’re deep. They’re littered with Pro Bowlers in all three phases, very well coached, they play hard, and (the) quarterback’s outstanding. Their defensive front is very deep, disruptive.

“It’s a damn good football team.”

While Buffalo has won each of the last four meetings, Sunday marks the first since Week 9 of the 2011 season in which the Bills and Jets both have winning records.

“We have all the respect in the world for them,” McDermott said of the Jets, “and it’s clear that they’re a really good football team.”

Zach bounceback?

Jets second-year quarterback Zach Wilson lost his first game this season after winning his first four starts, throwing three interceptions in the 22-17 loss to New England.

Wilson had gone three straight games without being picked off while New York relied heavily on the rushing attack. With rookie running back Breece Hall out for the season with a torn ACL, the Jets went back to the passing game — maybe too much. Wilson threw 41 times after not topping 26 passes in any of the previous three games. He had a career-high 355 yards, but the mistakes overshadowed any statistical superlatives.

“He has to play better,” Saleh said, “and we have to find ways to help him.”

Tre’Davious time?

Cornerback Tre’Davious White and the Bills’ brass were being cautious when it comes to when the starter will make his season debut. The sixth-year player was activated Tuesday after missing more than 11 months since tearing a ligament in his left knee. He wasn’t on the injury report Friday, but McDermott wouldn’t commit to White playing Sunday.

“I think that when I get back out, it’s going to be the right time and my leg will be right once I get back out there,” White said earlier in the week. “So I have confidence.”

Marquee matchup

The Jets’ cornerback duo of rookie Ahmad “Sauce” Gardner and veteran D.J. Reed has been a strength this season, with the two regularly frustrating opposing receivers.

Gardner and Reed face a major test Sunday in Stefon Diggs, who’s off to another terrific start. Diggs has 55 catches for 764 yards — both among the NFL’s leaders — and he’s tied with Kansas City’s Travis Kelce for the league lead with seven touchdown catches.


As first impressions go, running back Nyheim Hines liked what he saw during his first practice in Buffalo after being acquired in a trade with Indianapolis.

“Practice is crazy,” Hines said. “It’s a high-powered offense and I just want to help this offense become more high-powered.”

Hines brings a speedy dual-threat dimension to Buffalo’s backfield behind starter Devin Singletary.

The Bills also addressed their banged-up secondary at the trade deadline Tuesday by acquiring safety Dean Marlowe from Atlanta. Marlowe played for Buffalo from 2018-20. He provides a veteran presence to a group missing starter Micah Hyde (season-ending neck injury) and with Jordan Poyer ruled out because of an elbow injury.


AGAINST THE SPREAD: Bills 4-3-0; Jets 5-3-0

SERIES RECORD: Bills lead 67-56

LAST MEETING: Bills beat Jets 27-10 on Jan. 9, 2022, in Orchard Park, New York.

LAST WEEK: Bills beat Packers 27-17; Jets lost to Patriots 22-17





TURNOVER DIFFERENTIAL: Bills plus-2; Jets even.

BILLS PLAYER TO WATCH: WR Gabe Davis. With the Jets expected to focus their coverage on Stefon Diggs, Davis needs to step up after the third-year player struggled while catching two of seven passes thrown his way for just 35 yards against Green Bay. Davis had shown signs of being past an early season ankle injury by combining for six catches for 275 yards and three TDs in his previous two outings.

JETS PLAYER TO WATCH: QB Zach Wilson. The second-year quarterback is coming off his poorest outing of the season when he threw three interceptions in the loss to New England. Wilson did pass for a career-high 355 yards — his first 300-yard game — but was just 20 of 41 for a season-low 48.8 percent completion rate. The focus this week has been on him not having negative plays and throwing the ball away if he’s in trouble rather than trying to make something happen.

KEY MATCHUP: Bills WR Stefon Diggs vs. Jets CBs Sauce Gardner and D.J. Reed. Diggs will provide a massive test for Gardner and Reed, who could both line up against the star receiver throughout the game. Diggs is tied with Kansas City TE Travis Kelce for the league lead with seven TD catches, second in the NFL with 764 yards receiving and third with 55 catches.

KEY INJURIES: LB Matt Milano’s status is worth monitoring after he was unable to finish the Packers game with an oblique injury. … Starting RT Spencer Brown (ankle) is in position to return after missing one game. … CB Tre’Davious White isn’t on the injury report after being activated to the roster Tuesday after missing 11 months with a left knee injury. The Bills have been careful not to rush White into action, leaving his status uncertain for Sunday. … Jets WR Corey Davis (knee) could miss a second straight game after not practicing early in the week.

SERIES NOTES: The game marks the first in which the Bills and Jets have met with both having winning records since Week 9 of the 2011 season, when New York (4-3) won 27-11 in Buffalo (5-2). … The teams have faced each other once in the postseason, an AFC wild-card victory by the Bills during the 1981 season. … Buffalo has won the past four meetings, outscoring New York 117-54 during that span. … The Bills’ .545 winning percentage (67-56) is their best against AFC East opponents. … Bills coach Sean McDermott is 7-3 against the Jets with Buffalo. … The Jets’ most recent win in the series came in the 2019 season finale, when Sam Darnold’s 1-yard toss to Jamison Crowder was the only touchdown in New York’s 13-6 victory.

STATS AND STUFF: The Bills are 6-1 or better for just the eighth time in team history and first since 1993, when the Jim Kelly-era team also opened 6-1. … Buffalo enters having won four straight and a victory Sunday would mark just the seventh time the Bills have won at least seven of their first eight games, which they also did in 1993. … In two-plus seasons, QB Josh Allen and Diggs have connected for 25 touchdowns, tying the second-best mark for a quarterback-receiving duo in team history. Joe Ferguson threw 25 TD passes to Jerry Butler. Kelly and Andre Reed connected 65 times for TDs. … Allen’s 156 touchdowns (including one receiving) rank fourth among players through their first five NFL seasons behind only Dan Marino (170), Cam Newton (160) and Patrick Mahomes (159). … Allen’s two INTs against the Packers were his first turnovers in the second half this season. He’s 25-18 in games with an interception or lost fumble, and 5-1 this season. … The Bills have topped 300 yards in 12 straight outings, 14 including the playoffs. … Of Buffalo’s 67 offensive drives not ending at the half or fourth quarter, 48 have crossed midfield and 34 have resulted in points. They’ve had only 11 three-and-outs. … Pass rusher Von Miller is tied for seventh in the NFL with six sacks. He ranks 21st in the league with 121 1/2 sacks, a half-sack behind Simeon Rice and 1 1/2 behind Robert Mathis. … Buffalo’s 21 sacks through seven games matches its most over the same span since Rex Ryan’s final season as coach in 2016. … S Jordan Poyer is tied for first in the NFL with four interceptions despite missing two games to injuries. … The Jets had their four-game winning streak snapped in the loss to the Patriots last Sunday. … A victory would give New York at least six wins in its first nine games for the first time since 2010, when the Jets opened 7-2. … Wilson is 1-5 against AFC East teams in his young career, with three TDs and seven INTs. … WR Garrett Wilson leads the Jets with 34 receptions and 429 yards receiving. He’s also the first Jets rookie to have two 100-yard receiving performance in the first eight weeks of the season. … RB James Robinson, acquired last week from Jacksonville, ran for 17 yards on five carries last Sunday in his Jets debut. … New York went 5 for 14 on third down last week, making it just 9 for 39 in those situations in its past three games. … The Jets have 21 sacks to rank tied for ninth in the league. … DE Carl Lawson’s combined total of 45 quarterback hits (16) and quarterback pressures (29) rank first in the NFL. … New York had 13 tackles for loss against New England, its most since 2000.

FANTASY TIP: Jets TE Tyler Conklin is developing a good rapport for Wilson, who has been finding him as an outlet in the short passing game. Conklin has 10 catches, including two TDs, on 16 targets in the past two games and could see some more passes come his way against the Bills’ No. 3 overall defense.