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The Best Seasons From Every AFC East Team

AFC Best Seasons
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There have been several great teams throughout the history of the National Football League. Every team has had its share of highlight moments, dream seasons, and dominant performances.

This will be a series of every NFL team's best season by division, starting with the teams in the AFC East.

Buffalo Bills: 1990

Buffalo's first of four AFC championship teams was its best. The Bills won 13 games during the regular season before scoring 95 points in their first two playoff games. The Bills couldn’t duplicate that level of success in Super Bowl XXV. The New York Giants' ball-control offense, and Scott Norwood missing a 47-yard field goal as time expired, allowed New York to escape with a 20-19 victory.

AFC Best Seasons
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The Bills' best players that season included quarterback Jim Kelly and running back Thurman Thomas (whose 135 rushing yards in Super Bowl XXV remains the most rushing yards by a losing player in Super Bowl history). Also in the mix were receivers Andre Reed and James Lofton, defensive end Bruce Smith, linebackers Darryl Talley, Cornelius Bennett and Shane Conlan, and special teams ace Steve Tasker. The Bills remain the only team to appear in four consecutive Super Bowls.

Miami Dolphins: 1972

The 1972 Miami Dolphins are the only undefeated team in the Super Bowl era. While their "No Name" defense has rightfully gone down as one of the greatest units in league history, the Dolphins' offense was pretty great, too. Miami's offense featured running backs Larry Csonka, Jim Kiick and Mercury Morris, the first pair of teammates to each run for more than 1,000 yards in the same season.

AFC Best Seasons
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Along with Csonka and quarterback Bob Griese, the Dolphins' offense featured two other Hall of Famers in receiver Paul Warfield and right guard Larry Little. Super Bowl VII was a showcase for Miami's dominant defense, led by game MVP Jake Scott, whose 2 interceptions helped the Dolphins defeat Washington, 14-7. 

New England Patriots: 2016

It came down to the Patriots' 2004 and 2016 squads as their best team. The nod ultimately went to the group that overcame the largest deficit—28-3—in Super Bowl history, but this Patriots team should be remembered for more than just their epic comeback.

This team finished third in the league in scoring and first in scoring defense. They went 3-1 without Tom Brady under center at the start of the season. And when Brady returned, New England lost just one more game while winning 11 games by double digits.

AFC Best Seasons
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They defeated the Houston Texans and Pittsburgh Steelers by a combined score of 70-33 before scoring 31 unanswered points against the Atlanta Falcons in the Super Bowl. Along with Brady, the Patriots' offense featured a 1,000-yard running back (LeGarrette Blount), a 1,000-yard receiver (Julian Edelman), and a lethal tight end combination in Martellus Bennett and Rob Gronkowski, who combined to catch 80 passes for 1,241 yards and 10 touchdowns. On defense, the Patriots were led by Pro Bowlers Dont'a Hightower and Devin McCourty along with linebackers Jamie Collins and Rob Ninkovich and cornerback Malcolm Butler. 

New York Jets: 1968

After a 7-3 start, coach Weeb Ewbank, Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback Joe Namath, Hall of Fame receiver Don Maynard, and the Jets would win their final six games. This included impressive postseason victories over the Oakland Raiders and Baltimore Colts. A 17.5-point underdog entering Super Bowl III, the Jets' defense forced 5 turnovers, including 3 interceptions of Colts quarterback Earl Morrall, the NFL's MVP that season.

AFC Best Seasons
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The Jets' defense included four Pro Bowlers: defensive ends Gary Philbin and Verlon Biggs, defensive tackle John Elliott, and linebacker Al Atkinson. New York's 16-7 win, the AFL's first victory over the NFL, is considered the greatest upset in pro football history.


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