Buffalo debuted their new uniforms and helmets in 1974, replacing the red "standing buffalo" with the "streaking bison." The look first shown to a national audience on the first Monday Night Football game of the season, in a dramatic 21–20 victory over Oakland.
Star running backO.J. Simpson, coming off consecutive rushing titles, did not lead the league in 1974, but did cross the 1,000-yard barrier despite a sore knee.
Buffalo's defense was far more stout than it had been in previous years, as it gave up 3,489 yards in 1974, fifth-fewest in the NFL. The Bills' 1,611 passing yards allowed were the third-best in the league.
The 1974 Bills have the odd distinction of being the last team to go a full game without completing a pass, in Week Three of the season against the New York Jets. Despite this, they still managed to defeat the Jets, behind 223 combined Buffalo rushing yards—as well as only 2 completions by Jets quarterback Joe Namath in 18 attempts.
Oklahoma State tight end Reuben Gant played his entire seven-year career with the Bills. Quarterback Gary Marangi was the Bills' backup quarterback for three seasons; in 1976, he started the final seven games of the season when starter Joe Ferguson was injured for the season with a back injury.