Line: Colts -2.5

The Buffalo Bills and Indianapolis Colts will start their seasons on Sunday in

Buffalo with both teams coming off productive seasons last year. The Bills with a top

quality defense finished last year with a record of 9-7, which was their best record

since 1999. They led the NFL with 54 sacks and were ranked 3rd in the league in

takeaways with 30. The Colts reached the AFC title game behind the outstanding

play of quarterback Andrew Luck who led the NFL in both touchdown passes with

40 and passing yards with 4,761. Both teams have even more optimism going into

the year as each have made significant personnel changes to upgrade their roster.

While the Colts will miss the contributions of Reggie Wayne who wasn’t

resigned, they picked up both veteran running back Frank Gore who had over 1,000

yards last year for San Francisco and veteran wide receiver Andre Johnson who had

936 receiving yards last year for the Texans. Joining Johnson will be T.Y. Hilton who

re-signed for 5 years and had over 1,300 yards receiving last year. If there is a

weakness on this team it could be the run defense as they were torched for 177

yards in last years loss in the AFC title game. Their defensive line has 2 rookie

starters in Henry Anderson and David Perry and they will have to deal with running

back Lesean Mccoy who signed with the Bills in the off season.

Mccoy is a big upgrade over Fred Jackson who led the Bills in rushing last

year with 525 yards and 2 touchdowns. Mccoy had over 1,300 yards and 5

touchdowns last year for the Eagles. Although he missed most of the pre-season

with a sprained hamstring he is cleared to play Sunday. The Bills also signed head

coach Rex Ryan who coached the Jets to back-to-back AFC Championship games in

his first 2 seasons. Buffalo hasn’t been to the playoffs in 15 years and is looking to

build on last season’s positive record to get back into the playoffs. Defensively, they

will be returning ends Mario Williams and Jerry Hughes and All-Pro tackle Marcell

Dareus who all recorded double digit sacks last year. Their offense is a different

story as they will be lead by Tyrod Taylor who is making his first career start in the

NFL. In his career, he has only thrown 35 passes over 4 seasons as a backup for the

Baltimore Ravens.

The Colts have won 7 of the past 8 meetings between these 2 teams but lost

30-7 the last time they were at Ralph Wilson Stadium back in 2010. Andrew Luck

was a legitimate MVP candidate last year and has even more offensive weapons to

work with this year. With a proven new coach and an All-Pro caliber running back

the Bills will be on their game but the Colts were 1 win away from the Super Bowl

last year and have improved.

Pick: Colts -2.5

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