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Five things we learned during the Bills’ offseason program

Friday 15 June, 2018 | RSS Feed

Five things we learned during the Bills’ offseason program

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The head coach discusses his impressions of Josh Allen after the mandatory mini-camp. Sal Maiorana
ORCHARD PARK — The horn blew Thursday afternoon signifying the end of the Buffalo Bills’ mandatory mini-camp and, thus, the start of a nearly six-week summer vacation, so you can imagine the whoops and hollers that filled the windy air along One Bills Drive.

You can argue how much no-pads OTA and mini-camp practices in the spring mean to the future success or failure of an NFL team, so I never read very much into what takes place during these two-plus months of touch football.

But for the Bills, this time was valuable on two fronts: They were installing a new offensive system coordinated by Brian Daboll, while trying to figure out who their quarterback will be come opening day; and given that their offense could very well struggle, it was a time for the Bills to hone in on improving an already pretty good defense because that unit may be required to lead the way in 2018.

In saying he was “very happy” with how the offseason program went, coach Sean McDermott added, “The second year when you go through it, you see progress in areas that not everyone sees because it’s not obvious, it’s not on the scoreboard, but it’s in there. Every corner of our building, we have to pick up points and I’ve seen that this offseason. We’re further ahead this year than last year, still a lot of work to do, and now this time off, it’s a chance to hit the reset button and get some rest for our players as we head toward Rochester.”

Here are five things we learned during the Bills’ two-month offseason program:

Josh Allen isn’t the starting quarterback
Bills rookie quarterback Josh Allen hopes to work his way in front of Nathan Peterman (2) and AJ McCarron on the depth chart.
The Bills’ first-round draft pick was eased into his transition to the NFL, and McDermott made no bones about it — Allen operated with the third-team because at this early stage, he was behind A.J. McCarron and Nathan Peterman not only in experience and NFL status, but in viability. It figures to be a long haul for Allen in his quest to become what the Bills are hoping for, their long-term franchise quarterback. And it may not happen in training camp, either.

“Brian Daboll and David Culley have done a nice job of acclimating Josh to the system in the right dosage,” said McDermott. “Really, to Josh’s credit, we’ve not held back all that much to this point. One of the things that goes a little bit under the radar is understanding the defense as well; before you walk, you’ve got to crawl and a big part of the learning curve for quarterbacks is understanding the opponent and the defense and the way defenses work in this case.”






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