Buffalo Bills: Is This the Year the Bills Mafia Takes over the AFC East?

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Buffalo Bills: Is This the Year the Bills Mafia Takes over the AFC East?
Rick Stewart/Getty Images
The Bills Mafia hopes Buffalo gets out to a fast start against the Jets in Week 1.

The Buffalo Bills have been an afterthought in the AFC East for over a decade now. However, many think they're poised to give their most rabid fans, known as the Bills Mafia, their first taste of playoff football since 1999. So is this the year the Mafia takes over the division?

Before we answer that, let's explain how this phenomenon originated. Back in November 2010, after a costly drop in an overtime loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers, Stevie Johnson vented via Twitter:

I praise you 24/7!!! And this how you do me!!! You expect me to learn from this??? How??? I'll never forget this!! Ever!! Thx Tho.

Almost 24 hours later—an eternity in the Twitter world—Adam Schefter of ESPN retweeted Johnson's God tweet. Many Bills fans wondered why, especially since the commotion over the tweet had died down.

A few select ones started poking fun at Schefter, tweeting things like "Man discovers fire" and "Washington crosses Delaware" with the hashtag #SchefterBreakingNews. 

After these Buffalo diehards found themselves blocked by the ESPN insider, they started using the hashtag #BillsMafia, because according to BillsMafia.com:

We were “bad guys” in the eyes of Adam Schefter.

Nick Barnett's arrival in Buffalo is really what brought the movement into the limelight, as he had commented on how he liked a #BillsMafia tweet. Other current and former players started using the hashtag in their tweets and the rest is history. 

So back to the question at hand. 

Is this the year the Bills Mafia takes over the AFC East? Let's look at a couple reasons why that might be the case.

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