1984 Buffalo Bills season

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1984 Buffalo Bills season
Head coach Kay Stephenson
Owner Ralph Wilson
Home field Rich Stadium
Results
Record 2–14
Division place 5th AFC East
Playoff finish did not qualify
Timeline
Previous season Next season
< 1983 1985 >

The 1984 Buffalo Bills season was the 25th season for the club and its 15th in the National Football League (NFL). The team started the season with eleven consecutive losses before an upset home win over Dallas in Week Twelve.

The 1984 Bills gave up a team-record 454 points on defense, an average of more than 28 points per game.[1] The Bills gave up 30+ points eight times, and allowed fewer than 20 points in a game only three times all season.

The Bills also allowed 60 quarterback sacks, for a total of 554 yards, which were the most-ever yards-lost on sacks at the time.[2][3] The Bills' 4,341 total yards gained was second-worst in the league in 1984.[4][5] The 1984 Bills are one of only two NFL teams[6] to have been outscored by 25 points six different times during the season.[7]

Offseason[edit]

Uniform change[edit]

For the third time in team history, the Bills changed their helmets. While keeping the streaking buffalo logo from the second change, the Bills changed their helmet color from white to red. They would keep the red helmet through the 2010 season.[8] It was the Bills first major change to their helmets since changing from the "standing Bison" to the streaking buffalo before the 1974 season.

The reason for the change, according to Bills equipment coordinator Dave Hojnowski, was because Bills quarterback Joe Ferguson was color-blind. Since three of the Bills' four AFC Eastern division opponents—Miami, Indianapolis and New England—had white helmets, "it was easier for [Ferguson] to distinguish, and that’s the reason why we made the switch."[9][10] Ferguson had thrown a high number of interceptions over the previous two seasons, and coach Kay Stephenson hoped it would help the quarterback reduce them. Ironically, 1984 was Ferguson's last year with the Bills, and only year with the red helmets.

NFL draft[edit]

Main article: 1984 NFL draft

Notre Dame running back Greg Bell made the Pro Bowl in his rookie season; he was later traded to the Los Angeles Rams in the blockbuster three-team Eric Dickerson trade. Defensive end Sean McNanie played for the team for four of his seven NFL seasons. Punter John Kidd played his first six seasons with Buffalo; his career lasted a total of 15 seasons.

1984 Buffalo Bills draft
Round Pick Player Position College Notes
1 26 Greg Bell *  Running back Notre Dame
2 41 Eric Richardson  Wide receiver San Jose State
3 77 Rodney Bellinger  Defensive back Miami (FL)
3 79 Sean McNanie  Defensive end San Diego State
3 82 Speedy Neal  Running back Miami (FL)
4 95 Mitchell Brookins  Wide receiver Illinois
5 128 John Kidd  Punter Northwestern
6 155 Tony Slaton  Center USC
7 182 Stan David  Linebacker Texas Tech
8 209 Stacy Rayfield  Defensive back Texas–Arlington
9 236 Leroy Howell  Defensive end Appalachian State
10 263 Joe Azelby  Linebacker Harvard
11 299 Craig White  Wide receiver Missouri
12 322 Russell Davis  Wide receiver Maryland
      Made roster    *   Made at least one Pro Bowl during career

[11]

Personnel[edit]

Staff[edit]

1984 Buffalo Bills staff
Front office
  • President – Ralph Wilson
  • Senior Executive Vice President – Pat McGroder
  • Vice President of Administration/General Manager – Terry Bledsoe
  • Vice President of Football Operations – Kay Stephenson
  • Vice President of Player Personnel – Norm Pollom
  • Director of Pro Personnel – Bill Polian
  • Assistant Director of Player Personnel – Bruce Nicholas

Head coaches

  • Head Coach – Kay Stephenson

Offensive coaches

  • Quarterbacks – John Becker
  • Running Backs – Andy MacDonald
  • Receivers – Milt Jackson
  • Tight Ends – Perry Moss
  • Offensive Line – Jim Niblack
Defensive coaches

Special teams coaches

  • Special Teams – Miller McCalmon

Strength and conditioning

  • Strength and Conditioning Coordinator – Jim Speros

[12]

Regular season[edit]

Schedule[edit]

Week Date Opponent Result Attendance
1 September 2, 1984 New England Patriots L 21–17
48,528
2 September 9, 1984 at St. Louis Cardinals L 37–7
35,785
3 September 17, 1984 Miami Dolphins L 21–17
65,455
4 September 23, 1984 New York Jets L 28–26
48,330
5 September 30, 1984 at Indianapolis Colts L 31–17
60,032
6 October 7, 1984 Philadelphia Eagles L 27–17
37,555
7 October 14, 1984 at Seattle Seahawks L 31–28
59,034
8 October 21, 1984 Denver Broncos L 37–7
31,204
9 October 28, 1984 at Miami Dolphins L 38–7
58,824
10 November 4, 1984 Cleveland Browns L 13–10
33,343
11 November 11, 1984 at New England Patriots L 38–10
43,313
12 November 18, 1984 Dallas Cowboys W 14–3
74,391
13 November 25, 1984 at Washington Redskins L 41–14
51,513
14 December 2, 1984 Indianapolis Colts W 21–15
20,693
15 December 8, 1984 at New York Jets L 21–17
45,378
16 December 16, 1984 at Cincinnati Bengals L 52–21
55,771

Game summaries[edit]

Week 12[edit]

1 2 3 4 Total
Cowboys 0 3 0 0 3
• Bills 7 0 0 7 14

[13]

Week 14[edit]

1 2 3 4 Total
Colts 0 9 3 3 15
• Bills 21 0 0 0 21

[14]


Standings[edit]

AFC East
W L T PCT DIV CONF PF PA STK
Miami Dolphins(1) 14 2 0 .875 8–0 10–2 513 298 W2
New England Patriots 9 7 0 .563 6–2 9–3 362 352 W1
New York Jets 7 9 0 .438 3–5 7–7 332 364 L1
Indianapolis Colts 4 12 0 .250 2–6 4–8 239 414 L5
Buffalo Bills 2 14 0 .125 1–7 1–11 250 454 L2

Awards and honors[edit]

Pro Bowlers[edit]

Main article: 1985 Pro Bowl

References[edit]

External links[edit]