Series History between Titans, Bills
Nashville, TN – The Tennessee Titans and Buffalo Bills contest brings together two of the original teams of the American Football League, founded by two of the visionaries who helped set in motion one of the most significant eras in football history.
It was in 1960 that K.S. “Bud” Adams, Jr.’s then-Houston Oilers and Ralph Wilson, Jr.’s Bills became two of the eight teams that began play in the newly-formed league. Adams, Wilson and the other original AFL owners were dubbed the “Foolish Club” for their choice to accept the seemingly-impossible task of competing with the National Football League.
Tennessee Titans running back Dexter McCluster (22) is stopped by Buffalo Bills receiver Robert Woods (10) after a punt return during the second half at Nissan Stadium on October 11th, 2015. The Bills won 14-13. (Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports)
Ten seasons later, the burgeoning league’s success was more than apparent, as the AFL and NFL completed a historic merger.
In the regular season and postseason, the Titans and Bills have met a total of 45 times. The Titans hold a 28-17 advantage in the series, dating back to the inaugural AFL season.
The momentum in the series has swung back and forth. From 1967 until 1978, the Oilers had a 10-game winning streak over the Bills, the longest streak in the series. From 1983–94, Buffalo controlled the series, going 8-3. But since then, Tennessee has won eight out of the last 10, including five consecutive matchups from 2003-12.
However, the Bills took the most recent meeting, edging the Titans 14-13 at Nissan Stadium on October 11th, 2015. It was the second consecutive game between the Titans and Bills to be decided by one point. The Titans won 35-34 in Buffalo on October 21st, 2012.
The franchises have met three times in the playoffs, with Buffalo holding a 2-1 advantage in those meetings. The last playoff matchup between the two teams was in 1999, when the Titans defeated the Bills 22-16 in an AFC Wild Card game. In a play known as the “Music City Miracle,” Kevin Dyson returned a Frank Wycheck lateral on a kickoff return 75 yards for a touchdown with only 16 seconds left in the game, giving Tennessee the win. The Titans went on to beat Indianapolis and Jacksonville before falling to St. Louis in Super Bowl XXXIV.
In a 1992 Wild Card game, the Bills achieved a similarly miraculous win. Trailing 35-3 in the third quarter, the Bills rallied to score 35 consecutive points and eventually won 41-38 in overtime.
Most Recent Matchups
2009 Week 10 • Nov. 15, 2009 • Bills 17 at TITANS 41
Chris Johnson rushes for 132 yards on 26 carries and adds 100 yards on nine receptions, accounting for 232 of the team’s 378 total yards. Johnson becomes the second player in franchise history (Billy Cannon) to reach 100 receiving yards and 100 rushing yards in the same game.
The score is tied 17-17 before Tennessee scores 24 unanswered in the fourth quarter. Defensive backs Vincent Fuller and Rod Hood seal the game with interception returns for touchdowns.
2011 Week 13 • Dec. 4, 2011 • TITANS 23 at Bills 17
Chris Johnson rushes for 153 yards and two touchdowns on 23 carries, delivering scoring runs of 48 and four yards. Rob Bironas boots field goals of 48, 27 and 44 yards amid wind gusts of 20-25 miles per hour. Rookie middle linebacker Colin McCarthy provides a forced fumble and two fumble recoveries.
Titans withstand late charge by Bills, led by Ryan Fitzpatrick’s 288 yards and two-yard touchdown pass to Stevie Johnson. C.J. Spiller limited to three yards in the second half after he gained 80 in the first half.
2012 Week 7 • Oct. 21, 2012 • TITANS 35 at Bills 34
Matt Hasselbeck completes a game-winning touchdown pass to Nate Washington with 1:03 remaining in the fourth quarter. Chris Johnson rushes for 195 yards (long of 83) and two touchdowns, while Jamie Harper adds a pair of one-yard touchdown runs.
Buffalo’s Fred Jackson (71 yards) and C.J. Spiller (70 yards) combine for 141 rushing yards. Ryan Fitzpatrick victimized late by a Jason McCourty interception to set up the game-winning drive.
2015 Week 5 • Oct. 11, 2015 • BILLS 14 at Titans 13
The Titans hold the Bills scoreless in the first half and build a 10-0 lead before Bills quarterback Tyrod Taylor rushes for a 22-yard touchdown and passes for a two-yard score. The Titans possess the ball for 35:31 and limit Buffalo to 209 yards, including just 109 passing yards.
Taylor rushes for 76 total yards. Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota passes for 187 yards and rushes for 47 yards but is intercepted on the team’s final drive.