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John from Riverside

At the end of the day....this is our team

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On 9/2/2018 at 4:41 PM, baskingridgebillsfan said:

i have a very strange feeling that this year will go poorly,but i also fell the following year will be the first of many good seasons.   It is not Billsy to take a step back to take many forward,  In the past it has always been fill as a many holes as possible and try to sneak into the playoffs.   

 

I would think anything the team does is Billsy, by definition.

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On 9/2/2018 at 8:34 PM, ganesh said:

I won't even say the coaching was very good last year...The #s don't lie.  We were one of the worsts team statistically on defense and a middle of the run team with the worst passing on offense.  However, what the Coaching gave the team was the ability to make key plays when the game was on the line.  This allowed us to win games even when we were statistically not in it.

 

The draft is a crapshoot. We won't know about the success or failure of the draft until 2-3 seasons later. 

 

Go Bills!

 

On the defense, I disagree. For the most part they played well, and were even darn right dominant in some game. However, they had 3 or 4 incredibly terrible games that really brought all those "numbers" down.

 

So if anything, they were inconsistent, but showed signs of being good.

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On 9/2/2018 at 9:56 PM, Jerome007 said:

Dead cap space is horrendous but mostly on the past regime. Hopefully it quickly corrects itself by the next year or 2020

 

 

I disagree.  This is a perfect example of Bills cheerleaders using half-truths and untruths to exempt McDermott and Beane from responsibility for their actions by scapegoating individuals who are no longer with the Bills. 

  • McDermott and Beane chose to trade Dareus ($13.6 million), Glenn ($9.6 million), Taylor ($7.6 million), and Ragland ($1.2 million)  without regard to the cap consequences,  creating $32 million in dead cap money.  
  • They also chose to bring in Corey Coleman ($3.5 million) and AJ McCarron ($2.1 million) for essentially tryouts and send them both packing before the regular season even starts, resulting in $5.6 million in dead cap money.   
  • The bulk of the remainder of dead cap money goes to Eric Wood ($10.4 million) and Aaron Williams ($2.4 million), both of whom were forced to retire because of injury, for a total of $12.6 million.   Retirements due to injuries can't be blamed on anybody.

That's a total of $37.6 million of the Bills $53+ million dead cap money. 

 

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3 minutes ago, SoTier said:

 

I disagree.  This is a perfect example of Bills cheerleaders using half-truths and untruths to exempt McDermott and Beane from responsibility for their actions by scapegoating individuals who are no longer with the Bills. 

  • McDermott and Beane chose to trade Dareus ($13.6 million), Glenn ($9.6 million), Taylor ($7.6 million), and Ragland ($1.2 million)  without regard to the cap consequences,  creating $32 million in dead cap money.  
  • They also chose to bring in Corey Coleman ($3.5 million) and AJ McCarron ($2.1 million) for essentially tryouts and send them both packing before the regular season even starts, resulting in $5.6 million in dead cap money.   
  • The bulk of the remainder of dead cap money goes to Eric Wood ($10.4 million) and Aaron Williams ($2.4 million), both of whom were forced to retire because of injury, for a total of $12.6 million.   Retirements due to injuries can't be blamed on anybody.

That's a total of $37.6 million of the Bills $53+ million dead cap money. 

 

do you wake up this upset at the bills, or does something happen to you between 8 and 10 am that makes you that way?

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On 9/2/2018 at 6:31 PM, John from Riverside said:

When I comb through the transactions and our team has taken shape I feel that

 

- There simply was not the move that was going to make our team significantly better.....even after final cuts I am not seeing "that guy" that is going to come in and change whatever our win total is going to be this year. 

 

- I think that our coaching is so good that it got every last bit of mayo out of the jar last year.   I expect the same thing to happen this year.

 

- This year was all about getting the qb of the future.....biting the bullet on the huge dead cap....and looking towards next year with what is it....NINE picks and possibly around 100 million in cap space.....

 

- but what if....just WHAT if.....this team finds a way to be competative?  Now the team looks to be in GREAT shape heading into the following season with a strong draft under their belt, another set of 9 picks, and a lot of cap space.

John -

 

I like this.  We always knew there were two approaches to the draft - trade up for a QB, or use all those picks to build the O line and D line.   Bills went for the QB.   Now, if Peterman turns out to be a star, the Bills made the wrong choice.   With all those picks and a star QB, the Bills would have been contending this year and a potential powerhouse in the next two or three. 

 

However, I don't think Peterman has the arm to be a star.  Without a strong arm, teams struggle against good defenses, because the defenses can cheat in and gamble more, because they know the QB can't beat them.   So we're left with hoping Allen was a good choice.   I'm a little worried that he didn't win the starting competition against weak competition, but McDermott said in the Spring that overcoming the experience gap in just training camp and preseason would be very difficult.  

 

My view is that the game is all about coaching and the QB.  Like you, I think there's reason to believe the coaching is really good.  We saw it last season.  If the coaching is good, the Bills will be competitive this season, even with the holes we all can see.  If the coaching is good and either Peterman and Allen becomes a quality starter this season, Bills will go to the playoffs again.  

 

And, I think people have gone to sleep on Edmunds.   He's not much of a hitter yet, and that and his gap discipline have caused him to be not very effective in the run game, but I think he's already paying dividends in the passing game.   I think teams are learning already that he can take away the short and medium middle of the field.   He can run with anyone, so he isn't a gimme matchup, and in middle and deep middle zones he's a real headache.   

 

If somehow the Bills have good coaching, a star middle linebacker and a star QB, it's going to be a lot of fun around here.  

14 minutes ago, SoTier said:

 

I disagree.  This is a perfect example of Bills cheerleaders using half-truths and untruths to exempt McDermott and Beane from responsibility for their actions by scapegoating individuals who are no longer with the Bills. 

  • McDermott and Beane chose to trade Dareus ($13.6 million), Glenn ($9.6 million), Taylor ($7.6 million), and Ragland ($1.2 million)  without regard to the cap consequences,  creating $32 million in dead cap money.  
  • They also chose to bring in Corey Coleman ($3.5 million) and AJ McCarron ($2.1 million) for essentially tryouts and send them both packing before the regular season even starts, resulting in $5.6 million in dead cap money.   
  • The bulk of the remainder of dead cap money goes to Eric Wood ($10.4 million) and Aaron Williams ($2.4 million), both of whom were forced to retire because of injury, for a total of $12.6 million.   Retirements due to injuries can't be blamed on anybody.

That's a total of $37.6 million of the Bills $53+ million dead cap money. 

 

You put Dareus, Glenn, Taylor and Ragland on McBeane.   McBeane weren't responsible for those contracts.   Those are guys that McBeane didn't want or, in Glenn's case, couldn't use.   Guys on your team you don't want are just as much "dead" space as guys you cut.   Either way, the team is taking the cap hit, and wither way the guys aren't helping you.   Either way, you're looking for other players, in the draft or in free agency.  

 

And of course you'd rather not sign guys and then cut them, but every team has some of these.   

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On 9/2/2018 at 10:34 PM, ganesh said:

I won't even say the coaching was very good last year...The #s don't lie.  We were one of the worsts team statistically on defense and a middle of the run team with the worst passing on offense.  However, what the Coaching gave the team was the ability to make key plays when the game was on the line.  This allowed us to win games even when we were statistically not in it.

 

Huh?   

 

In 2016 the Bills were 16th in yards per game and 10th in points per game.  Defensively they were 19th and 16th.   As was always the case with teams Rex coached, they couldn't make key plays when the game was on the line.   Coaching clearly was the difference.  

 

So are you saying you'd rather have stats and not go to the playoffs, or have a team that has lousy stats but that scratches and claws, gives the opponent nothing in the second half, and goes to the playoffs?   

 

2017 was a masterful coaching job.  The team was in transition, the receiving corps was decimated, both the offense and defense were learning new schemes, the team suffered a brutal mid-season letdown, and the team still recovered to go to the playoffs.  

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8 minutes ago, Shaw66 said:

John -

 

I like this.  We always knew there were two approaches to the draft - trade up for a QB, or use all those picks to build the O line and D line.   Bills went for the QB.   Now, if Peterman turns out to be a star, the Bills made the wrong choice.   With all those picks and a star QB, the Bills would have been contending this year and a potential powerhouse in the next two or three. 

 

However, I don't think Peterman has the arm to be a star.  Without a strong arm, teams struggle against good defenses, because the defenses can cheat in and gamble more, because they know the QB can't beat them.   So we're left with hoping Allen was a good choice.   I'm a little worried that he didn't win the starting competition against weak competition, but McDermott said in the Spring that overcoming the experience gap in just training camp and preseason would be very difficult.  

 

My view is that the game is all about coaching and the QB.  Like you, I think there's reason to believe the coaching is really good.  We saw it last season.  If the coaching is good, the Bills will be competitive this season, even with the holes we all can see.  If the coaching is good and either Peterman and Allen becomes a quality starter this season, Bills will go to the playoffs again.  

 

And, I think people have gone to sleep on Edmunds.   He's not much of a hitter yet, and that and his gap discipline have caused him to be not very effective in the run game, but I think he's already paying dividends in the passing game.   I think teams are learning already that he can take away the short and medium middle of the field.   He can run with anyone, so he isn't a gimme matchup, and in middle and deep middle zones he's a real headache.   

 

If somehow the Bills have good coaching, a star middle linebacker and a star QB, it's going to be a lot of fun around here.  

 

Coaching and QB are definitely the two most important.

The game is not all about that though.

There is a talent level that you need across the board at many key positions.

Our offensive line and WR corps are tire-fires.

It doesn't matter how good your QB is if you cannot protect him and he has nobody to catch the ball.

It doesn't matter how good your coaching is if the players you have cannot actually execute the strategy/plays which the coach comes up with.

We are devoid of any real talent at WR and oline save for KB being an above average receiver.

 

Edmunds will have a rough rookie year I believe. He's got a LOT to learn, he's very young, but he's hungry, and seems to be a hard worker, so I'm thinking that he'll be looking really good by halfway through the season.

 

We have some really good top guys (tre white, poyer, hyde, shady, even KB), some good young pieces (allen, edmunds, and a couple others), but after that we are SUPER thin.

Our secondary is legit awful after white/poyer/hyde though, we have NO linebackers who are even above average (MAYBE milano) after Edmunds, who as I said, has some learning to do, and KW is our best Dlineman, the rest don't look good at all, and I feel like that's going to be a HUGE issue.

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Just now, SouthNYfan said:

 

Coaching and QB are definitely the two most important.

The game is not all about that though.

There is a talent level that you need across the board at many key positions.

Our offensive line and WR corps are tire-fires.

It doesn't matter how good your QB is if you cannot protect him and he has nobody to catch the ball.

It doesn't matter how good your coaching is if the players you have cannot actually execute the strategy/plays which the coach comes up with.

We are devoid of any real talent at WR and oline save for KB being an above average receiver.

 

Edmunds will have a rough rookie year I believe. He's got a LOT to learn, he's very young, but he's hungry, and seems to be a hard worker, so I'm thinking that he'll be looking really good by halfway through the season.

 

We have some really good top guys (tre white, poyer, hyde, shady, even KB), some good young pieces (allen, edmunds, and a couple others), but after that we are SUPER thin.

Our secondary is legit awful after white/poyer/hyde though, we have NO linebackers who are even above average (MAYBE milano) after Edmunds, who as I said, has some learning to do, and KW is our best Dlineman, the rest don't look good at all, and I feel like that's going to be a HUGE issue.

I think your assessment is wrong for a couple of reasons.   First, though, I agree Edmunds COULD have a rough rookie season.   I was talking more long term.  As I said, I think he'll have trouble against the run.  But I think he's already going to be a positive in the passing game.  

 

The reasons I think you're wrong are (1) the draft and the salary cap and injuries level out the talent across the league pretty effectively and (2) other than a couple of positions, talent just doesn't matter that much.   

 

Look at receivers.   First, the very best receivers in the league rarely are on championship teams.  Why?   Because they aren't all that important over the long term.   Pats have Gronk, but they won with Brady and Belichick without Gronk.   Julio Jones.  Larry Fitzgerald.  Megatron.   Having a great receiver just doesn't make your team that much better.   Bills have Benjamin.  He's a top 15 receiver - maybe not in the mold you'd like, but he's a top 15 receiver.   Health is an issue.   Clay is a top 15 tight end.   Jones has promise.   The Bills are nowhere near the bottom of the league at receiver.   They're average.  

 

A couple years ago, Colin Cowherd asked a Las Vegas bookmaker how important JJ Watt is to the point spread.   The guy said less than a point.   Watt was by far the most dominant defensive player in the league, and he wasn't even a one-point difference in the game.   QBs have, I'd guess, a three to six point impact, if you lose a good one.  So if JJ Watt doesn't have a significant impact on the outcome of the game, how much impact do you think a starting guard has?   Practically none.   In other words, you can take one guard out of the game and put in another, and the outcome of the game probably doesn't change.  

 

Yes, I'd rather have two guards in the top 30 in the league, but few teams, if any, have that.   And the difference between the 60th best guard and the 90th best guard is tiny.  

 

I've said this before:  unless you have the first, second or third best, maybe fourth or fifth best guy in the league, the talent differential in the NFL just isn't very big.   The best offensive tackle in the league is NOT on someone's bench.   The 10th best offensive tackle in the league is NOT on someone's bench.   Probably the 50 best offense tackles in the league are starters.   The 90th best offensive tackle in pro football isn't much different from the 50th best.   And NO team has five guys starting on the oline all of whom are in the 30 at his position (15 for centers).   The talent is spread around.   

 

In that kind of environment, coaching and quarterbacking make a huge difference.    Belichick wins all the time because he's the greatest coach in the history of the game, and his coaching excellence in a league where there's talent parity gives him an edge that no teams have been able to overcome with talent.  Why?   Because it's no longer possible to acquire and hold on to a Kelly, Thomas, Reed, Smith, Biscuit, Talley, Tasker and all those other guys.  You have to win with no names.

 

Yes, the Bills have a lot of no names.   But as we saw last season, coaching can make a guy like Milano useful.   

 

Coaching, coaching, coaching.   And quarterbacking.   

 

Coaching can overcome talent deficiencies.   Talent can't overcome coaching deficiencies; if it could, Larry Fitzgerald would have won Super Bowls.  

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If the Bills can get to an 8-8 year with the lack of talent on this team with QB's with little experience it will be a coaching miracle. Next year the Bills have the cap room and picks to propel to the top. This year is a year to mold our QB, weather it is Petermen or Allen. Their should be no confusion in 2019, the best QB has to shine.

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12 minutes ago, Shaw66 said:

I think your assessment is wrong for a couple of reasons.   First, though, I agree Edmunds COULD have a rough rookie season.   I was talking more long term.  As I said, I think he'll have trouble against the run.  But I think he's already going to be a positive in the passing game.  

 

The reasons I think you're wrong are (1) the draft and the salary cap and injuries level out the talent across the league pretty effectively and (2) other than a couple of positions, talent just doesn't matter that much.   

 

Look at receivers.   First, the very best receivers in the league rarely are on championship teams.  Why?   Because they aren't all that important over the long term.   Pats have Gronk, but they won with Brady and Belichick without Gronk.   Julio Jones.  Larry Fitzgerald.  Megatron.   Having a great receiver just doesn't make your team that much better.   Bills have Benjamin.  He's a top 15 receiver - maybe not in the mold you'd like, but he's a top 15 receiver.   Health is an issue.   Clay is a top 15 tight end.   Jones has promise.   The Bills are nowhere near the bottom of the league at receiver.   They're average.  

 

A couple years ago, Colin Cowherd asked a Las Vegas bookmaker how important JJ Watt is to the point spread.   The guy said less than a point.   Watt was by far the most dominant defensive player in the league, and he wasn't even a one-point difference in the game.   QBs have, I'd guess, a three to six point impact, if you lose a good one.  So if JJ Watt doesn't have a significant impact on the outcome of the game, how much impact do you think a starting guard has?   Practically none.   In other words, you can take one guard out of the game and put in another, and the outcome of the game probably doesn't change.  

 

Yes, I'd rather have two guards in the top 30 in the league, but few teams, if any, have that.   And the difference between the 60th best guard and the 90th best guard is tiny.  

 

I've said this before:  unless you have the first, second or third best, maybe fourth or fifth best guy in the league, the talent differential in the NFL just isn't very big.   The best offensive tackle in the league is NOT on someone's bench.   The 10th best offensive tackle in the league is NOT on someone's bench.   Probably the 50 best offense tackles in the league are starters.   The 90th best offensive tackle in pro football isn't much different from the 50th best.   And NO team has five guys starting on the oline all of whom are in the 30 at his position (15 for centers).   The talent is spread around.   

 

In that kind of environment, coaching and quarterbacking make a huge difference.    Belichick wins all the time because he's the greatest coach in the history of the game, and his coaching excellence in a league where there's talent parity gives him an edge that no teams have been able to overcome with talent.  Why?   Because it's no longer possible to acquire and hold on to a Kelly, Thomas, Reed, Smith, Biscuit, Talley, Tasker and all those other guys.  You have to win with no names.

 

Yes, the Bills have a lot of no names.   But as we saw last season, coaching can make a guy like Milano useful.   

 

Coaching, coaching, coaching.   And quarterbacking.   

 

Coaching can overcome talent deficiencies.   Talent can't overcome coaching deficiencies; if it could, Larry Fitzgerald would have won Super Bowls.  

 

Talent is talent.

You aren't winning games with a bunch of guys on your oline , WR, CB2, and LB who wouldn't make the PS on 50% of the teams in the league and wouldn't start on 95%

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1 hour ago, MJS said:

 

On the defense, I disagree. For the most part they played well, and were even darn right dominant in some game. However, they had 3 or 4 incredibly terrible games that really brought all those "numbers" down.

 

So if anything, they were inconsistent, but showed signs of being good.

They weren’t all that great at stopping the run or getting to the passer. They did come up with a lot of turnovers, but that stat isn’t thought of as being repeatable year to year. That’s the reason for the low ranking. 

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41 minutes ago, Shaw66 said:

I think your assessment is wrong for a couple of reasons.   First, though, I agree Edmunds COULD have a rough rookie season.   I was talking more long term.  As I said, I think he'll have trouble against the run.  But I think he's already going to be a positive in the passing game.  

 

The reasons I think you're wrong are (1) the draft and the salary cap and injuries level out the talent across the league pretty effectively and (2) other than a couple of positions, talent just doesn't matter that much.   

 

Look at receivers.   First, the very best receivers in the league rarely are on championship teams.  Why?   Because they aren't all that important over the long term.   Pats have Gronk, but they won with Brady and Belichick without Gronk.   Julio Jones.  Larry Fitzgerald.  Megatron.   Having a great receiver just doesn't make your team that much better.   Bills have Benjamin.  He's a top 15 receiver - maybe not in the mold you'd like, but he's a top 15 receiver.   Health is an issue.   Clay is a top 15 tight end.   Jones has promise.   The Bills are nowhere near the bottom of the league at receiver.   They're average.  

 

A couple years ago, Colin Cowherd asked a Las Vegas bookmaker how important JJ Watt is to the point spread.   The guy said less than a point.   Watt was by far the most dominant defensive player in the league, and he wasn't even a one-point difference in the game.   QBs have, I'd guess, a three to six point impact, if you lose a good one.  So if JJ Watt doesn't have a significant impact on the outcome of the game, how much impact do you think a starting guard has?   Practically none.   In other words, you can take one guard out of the game and put in another, and the outcome of the game probably doesn't change.  

 

Yes, I'd rather have two guards in the top 30 in the league, but few teams, if any, have that.   And the difference between the 60th best guard and the 90th best guard is tiny.  

 

I've said this before:  unless you have the first, second or third best, maybe fourth or fifth best guy in the league, the talent differential in the NFL just isn't very big.   The best offensive tackle in the league is NOT on someone's bench.   The 10th best offensive tackle in the league is NOT on someone's bench.   Probably the 50 best offense tackles in the league are starters.   The 90th best offensive tackle in pro football isn't much different from the 50th best.   And NO team has five guys starting on the oline all of whom are in the 30 at his position (15 for centers).   The talent is spread around.   

 

In that kind of environment, coaching and quarterbacking make a huge difference.    Belichick wins all the time because he's the greatest coach in the history of the game, and his coaching excellence in a league where there's talent parity gives him an edge that no teams have been able to overcome with talent.  Why?   Because it's no longer possible to acquire and hold on to a Kelly, Thomas, Reed, Smith, Biscuit, Talley, Tasker and all those other guys.  You have to win with no names.

 

Yes, the Bills have a lot of no names.   But as we saw last season, coaching can make a guy like Milano useful.   

 

Coaching, coaching, coaching.   And quarterbacking.   

 

Coaching can overcome talent deficiencies.   Talent can't overcome coaching deficiencies; if it could, Larry Fitzgerald would have won Super Bowls.  

Like SouthNYfan, I think you overstate your case. I will grant that superior coaching ought to give one an edge where the CBA and salary cap tend to push teams towards a middling level of talent. Qb and edge rusher probably make the most impact, but there are likely six to eight positions that have higher value than others. I still believe it's possible to acquire and keep top ten performers at positions of greatest importance. The teams with the better overall collection of talent are more likely to perform well even when coaching is average. Unless one is matched against a coaching staff of really superlative ability, I think talent is a more significant factor than you allow. All that said, it's a very interesting argument and has some plausibility.

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On ‎9‎/‎2‎/‎2018 at 6:46 PM, BringBackOrton said:

It’s not hard to see a team that can replicate last years success with a couple of bounces. Unfortunately, it’s also easy to see a team go 6-10 or 5-11 with a few bad beats.

 

We simply are closer to the Jauron era in talent than we are the Rex era. MOR teams are MOR.

Last year the Buffalo Bills got a lot of breaks that went their way and they finished the season #7 overall in point differential @+9. 

 

This is something that isn't sustainable due to an oblong spheroids bounce... and luck. Tyrod Taylor had a lot to do with that as he only had 4 INTs all year. Peterman had 5 INTs in one half...

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7 hours ago, Fadingpain said:

Actually, hard work, sweating over every last detail, and always thinking you can improve are the sorts of things that lead to good things.

 

We are a league leading regression candidate for this season and likely to take a big step backward.  Without the ridiculous takeaway/giveaway ratio we enjoyed last year, we almost have to regress.

 

The question is whether we will rebound with 2 steps forward next year and beyond.

 

That depends entirely on whether or not Josh Allen can defy odds and turn into a good QB.

 

 

Somebody pass this guy the Prozac. 

 

We will improve and build upon last year. 

 

Cheer up Bud. 

Edited by COTC

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13 minutes ago, Dr. Who said:

Like SouthNYfan, I think you overstate your case. I will grant that superior coaching ought to give one an edge where the CBA and salary cap tend to push teams towards a middling level of talent. Qb and edge rusher probably make the most impact, but there are likely six to eight positions that have higher value than others. I still believe it's possible to acquire and keep top ten performers at positions of greatest importance. The teams with the better overall collection of talent are more likely to perform well even when coaching is average. Unless one is matched against a coaching staff of really superlative ability, I think talent is a more significant factor than you allow. All that said, it's a very interesting argument and has some plausibility.

Got you.  Well said.

 

I just don't agree.   The Pats, Saints and Chiefs are competitive year in and year out because they have coaches who know how to win.   

 

Nobody can collect and hold onto superior talent long enough to be consistent winners like that.   

 

I can't name a team that's been a consistent winner recently because of talent ,talent, that is, outside of QB.  (The Packers have Rodgers, for example, and a great QB covers a lot of deficiencies, including coaching.)      Maybe Atlanta.   

 

Look at the Seahawks.   There's a team that made it on talent, and we've seen what's happened to them.   They made it by being fortunate enough to have several Pro Bowl players, including a QB, on their rookie contracts.   So they had a lot of talent cheap, and they won with a coach who was a good fit for them.  But within a couple of years the talent got injured or left in free agency, and they're back in the pack again.  But that happened only because they got really lucky in the draft for a few years.   If that were an effective model, you'd see other teams doing it.   

That's why McDermott has the philosophy he does.   He knows that he can't have defensive ends who will generate, on their own, 10 sacks a season.   But he CAN have decent level talent at defensive end who, if they do their jobs all the time, work hard, etc., will get enough sacks and pressures to make the defense effective.   That's why, I'd guess, the Bills weren't willing to dump a lot capital on Mack.   

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2 minutes ago, Shaw66 said:

Got you.  Well said.

 

I just don't agree.   The Pats, Saints, and Chiefs are competitive year in and year out because they have coaches who know how to win.   

 

Nobody can collect and hold onto superior talent long enough to be consistent winners like that.     

 

While I agree with most of what you say and to me coaching is everything.

 

Those teams you named win mostly because they have great QB's Pats, Tom Brady GOAT, Saints were crap for so many years without Drew Brees. The Chiefs have been winning with #1 overall pick at QB in Alex Smith. 

 

That said, you gotta have talent in key positions, QB mostly and skill positions. The thing is that great coaches are also usually great at talent evaluation and find the players needed to build a team properly. 

 

What I find in today's NFL that really bothers me is so many teams think that they need a 100 million dollar DE or DT and yet want to try to get by with .50 cent OT's, OG's. To me, I think it's equally important to protect that franchise QB as it is to rush the passer. Both sides of the lines should be nearly equal. 

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20 minutes ago, Shaw66 said:

Got you.  Well said.

 

I just don't agree.   The Pats, Saints and Chiefs are competitive year in and year out because they have coaches who know how to win.   

 

Nobody can collect and hold onto superior talent long enough to be consistent winners like that.   

 

I can't name a team that's been a consistent winner recently because of talent ,talent, that is, outside of QB.  (The Packers have Rodgers, for example, and a great QB covers a lot of deficiencies, including coaching.)      Maybe Atlanta.   

 

Look at the Seahawks.   There's a team that made it on talent, and we've seen what's happened to them.   They made it by being fortunate enough to have several Pro Bowl players, including a QB, on their rookie contracts.   So they had a lot of talent cheap, and they won with a coach who was a good fit for them.  But within a couple of years the talent got injured or left in free agency, and they're back in the pack again.  But that happened only because they got really lucky in the draft for a few years.   If that were an effective model, you'd see other teams doing it.   

That's why McDermott has the philosophy he does.   He knows that he can't have defensive ends who will generate, on their own, 10 sacks a season.   But he CAN have decent level talent at defensive end who, if they do their jobs all the time, work hard, etc., will get enough sacks and pressures to make the defense effective.   That's why, I'd guess, the Bills weren't willing to dump a lot capital on Mack.   

I agree that the Seahawks were exceptionally fortunate. One cannot use them as an exemplar to emulate. I also do not question that a team with a good coach and a good qb is likely to consistently outperform teams lacking one or the other. Further, I concur that McDermott knows, for instance, that he can do well with cbs that are very good, but lack the elite skills necessary for "Revis island" performance. A good coach with an excellent grasp of what makes his particular schemes work will know where to allocate his resources. Still, surely there is a limit to how far coaching can elevate natural talent? I guess I am suspicious that the 90th best OT is not much different from 50th. Even if McDermott is as good as we hope he is, I don't think he can overcome what seems to me the evident lack of talent at o-line, for example. In short, at some point there is a minimum threshold for talent and I think there are key areas on the team where we don't yet meet it. I do believe Allen has a good chance to be the real deal and if that happens, we will be good sooner rather than later.

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16 minutes ago, Dr. Who said:

I agree that the Seahawks were exceptionally fortunate. One cannot use them as an exemplar to emulate. I also do not question that a team with a good coach and a good qb is likely to consistently outperform teams lacking one or the other. Further, I concur that McDermott knows, for instance, that he can do well with cbs that are very good, but lack the elite skills necessary for "Revis island" performance. A good coach with an excellent grasp of what makes his particular schemes work will know where to allocate his resources. Still, surely there is a limit to how far coaching can elevate natural talent? I guess I am suspicious that the 90th best OT is not much different from 50th. Even if McDermott is as good as we hope he is, I don't think he can overcome what seems to me the evident lack of talent at o-line, for example. In short, at some point there is a minimum threshold for talent and I think there are key areas on the team where we don't yet meet it. I do believe Allen has a good chance to be the real deal and if that happens, we will be good sooner rather than later.

Thanks, Who.   Good comments. 

 

I agree that if, for example, the O line is really horrible, coaching can't over come it.   The fact is, however, that O line almost certainly is NOT really horrible, because NO offensive line in the league is really horrible compared to most offensive lines in the league.   Here's why:

 

First, let's start with a quote from a post in this thread:  "You aren't winning games with a bunch of guys on your oline , WR, CB2, and LB who wouldn't make the PS on 50% of the teams in the league and wouldn't start on 95%"   Recognize that that is literally false.   If there's a better offensive lineman on someone's practice squad than a guy the Bills have, he will be on the Bills this afternoon.   What talented o lineman is going to stay on Denver's practice squad, for rock bottom minimum salary, sitting behind other linemen who are better than he is, instead of signing for a million bucks and playing in the NFL?   It simply isn't true that other teams have better players on their practice squads than the Bills have on their roster.   

 

If you just think about that alone, you can see that the talent differential has to be minimal.

 

Second, let's look at the universe of offensive tackles.  There are about 100 offensive tackles in the league - about 3 per team.   They're aged 23 to 35.   There are probably 20 more on practice squads.   There are probably about 500 more offensive tackles in that age bracket who played college ball who were close to making it , maybe got signed as undrafted free agents, and got cut, maybe thought about it but were ready to retire after college.   That's the universe of offensive tackles.   But that isn't the universe of men aged 23 to 35.   That is the very cream of the crop of all men in that age group - it's the very few with the size and athletic ability to do a very demanding job.   

 

If you know about bell curves, you'll understand that all of these guys, the 500, are way out there on the right end of the bell curve.   The very best one or two  or three are out farther than anyone else, and the next seven or ten begin to cluster together.   By the time you get to the 50th best, he is not marginally better than the 51st or 52nd guy.   By the time you get to the 80th best, he's pretty much the same guy as the 70th or the 90th.    He's a ton better than the average 25 year-old, 6'4" 300 pound guy, but he's pretty much the same as the 70th or 90th best.   All those guys who just missed making the NFL, 120 to 200 or more, are essentially the same guys.  They're interchangeable.   

 

Because of the draft and free agency, nobody has an offensive line where everyone is top 10, or even close.   Dallas got close a few years ago, when they were starting something like three guys taken in the first round and two taken in the second.   But injuries, and free agency already have taken their toll, and even when they were together they may have been the best but they didn't make their team a winner.   

 

Look at the 100 offensive tackles in the league.    Do you know who the 50th best OT is?   How do you know he's better than the 45th?    You don't.   Is the 10th better than 50th?   Sure.   Does any team have two in the top 10?   No.   Why not?  Because if you have a great OT, you aren't drafting or signing another one.   And if you happen to luck into two great OTs, you can't pay them both, so one leaves in free agency.   It's pretty obvious that the talent moves around..  The best players look for the best money or the best situations.   

 

Its a virtual certainty that if the Bills have the worst offensive line in the league, in terms of talent it isn't much different from the 25th or even the 20th offensive line.   I suppose the Bills MIGHT be different this season, because they lost two of their best three offensive men (I don't count  Glenn, because they already had his replacement), and they don't seem to have filled with position with a quality guy.   But I doubt it.  What those losses mean is the Bills went from average to below average in the league.  

 

So good offensive line play in the NFL is about scheme and technique, not overwhelming talent.  Why?  Because only a few teams have guys with overwhelming talent at one position, and probably none have overwhelming talent at two.   Mostly they have talent that's marginally better or marginally worse than the guys on the next team.   When there are only marginal differences, coaching becomes critical.   If by virtue of scheme I can put my player in a better position to block his man, I don't need better talent - I just need a guy who will execute what I ask him to do, and a lot of guys can do that.    That is what Belichick does.   He's played musical chairs in his defensive backfield and on his offensive line for nearly two decades.   He gets decent athletes, not the best in the league, to execute his schemes.

 

Nobody wants to believe this, because (1) it's not what they hear on television and (2) it's much simpler to think about the game if you believe that talent is what drives performance.  

 

I loved hearing Al Horford interviewed after he got a big bucket to seal a win for the Celtics in the playoffs.   He got the ball one on one against a small guy in the paint, backed in and scored.  Now, Horford is a good player, for sure, but he is not in the top 5 centers or power forwards in the league.  What he say?   He said "Brad Stevens is a genius."   He said every day in practice Stevens teaches them new stuff he's dreamed up, and that's what gives the Celtics an edge.  Football is more complicated than basketball, so the value of the coaching is increased.   

 

Bringing it back to the Bills, it means that having even the 32nd best talent in the league, which I doubt is true for the Bills, they simply aren't that much different, talent-wise, from 25., are even #15.   I'll take Belichick and the 32 best talent over any other coach and the 15th best talent.   

 

I don't know how good McDermott is.  So far, he's been pretty good, and he should be better in his second season than his first.   

 

That's why I still think the Bills are pushing .500 again this season.  

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3 hours ago, Shaw66 said:

Thanks, Who.   Good comments. 

 

I agree that if, for example, the O line is really horrible, coaching can't over come it.   The fact is, however, that O line almost certainly is NOT really horrible, because NO offensive line in the league is really horrible compared to most offensive lines in the league.   Here's why:

 

First, let's start with a quote from a post in this thread:  "You aren't winning games with a bunch of guys on your oline , WR, CB2, and LB who wouldn't make the PS on 50% of the teams in the league and wouldn't start on 95%"   Recognize that that is literally false.   If there's a better offensive lineman on someone's practice squad than a guy the Bills have, he will be on the Bills this afternoon.   What talented o lineman is going to stay on Denver's practice squad, for rock bottom minimum salary, sitting behind other linemen who are better than he is, instead of signing for a million bucks and playing in the NFL?   It simply isn't true that other teams have better players on their practice squads than the Bills have on their roster.   

 

If you just think about that alone, you can see that the talent differential has to be minimal.

 

Second, let's look at the universe of offensive tackles.  There are about 100 offensive tackles in the league - about 3 per team.   They're aged 23 to 35.   There are probably 20 more on practice squads.   There are probably about 500 more offensive tackles in that age bracket who played college ball who were close to making it , maybe got signed as undrafted free agents, and got cut, maybe thought about it but were ready to retire after college.   That's the universe of offensive tackles.   But that isn't the universe of men aged 23 to 35.   That is the very cream of the crop of all men in that age group - it's the very few with the size and athletic ability to do a very demanding job.   

 

If you know about bell curves, you'll understand that all of these guys, the 500, are way out there on the right end of the bell curve.   The very best one or two  or three are out farther than anyone else, and the next seven or ten begin to cluster together.   By the time you get to the 50th best, he is not marginally better than the 51st or 52nd guy.   By the time you get to the 80th best, he's pretty much the same guy as the 70th or the 90th.    He's a ton better than the average 25 year-old, 6'4" 300 pound guy, but he's pretty much the same as the 70th or 90th best.   All those guys who just missed making the NFL, 120 to 200 or more, are essentially the same guys.  They're interchangeable.   

 

Because of the draft and free agency, nobody has an offensive line where everyone is top 10, or even close.   Dallas got close a few years ago, when they were starting something like three guys taken in the first round and two taken in the second.   But injuries, and free agency already have taken their toll, and even when they were together they may have been the best but they didn't make their team a winner.   

 

Look at the 100 offensive tackles in the league.    Do you know who the 50th best OT is?   How do you know he's better than the 45th?    You don't.   Is the 10th better than 50th?   Sure.   Does any team have two in the top 10?   No.   Why not?  Because if you have a great OT, you aren't drafting or signing another one.   And if you happen to luck into two great OTs, you can't pay them both, so one leaves in free agency.   It's pretty obvious that the talent moves around..  The best players look for the best money or the best situations.   

 

Its a virtual certainty that if the Bills have the worst offensive line in the league, in terms of talent it isn't much different from the 25th or even the 20th offensive line.   I suppose the Bills MIGHT be different this season, because they lost two of their best three offensive men (I don't count  Glenn, because they already had his replacement), and they don't seem to have filled with position with a quality guy.   But I doubt it.  What those losses mean is the Bills went from average to below average in the league.  

 

So good offensive line play in the NFL is about scheme and technique, not overwhelming talent.  Why?  Because only a few teams have guys with overwhelming talent at one position, and probably none have overwhelming talent at two.   Mostly they have talent that's marginally better or marginally worse than the guys on the next team.   When there are only marginal differences, coaching becomes critical.   If by virtue of scheme I can put my player in a better position to block his man, I don't need better talent - I just need a guy who will execute what I ask him to do, and a lot of guys can do that.    That is what Belichick does.   He's played musical chairs in his defensive backfield and on his offensive line for nearly two decades.   He gets decent athletes, not the best in the league, to execute his schemes.

 

Nobody wants to believe this, because (1) it's not what they hear on television and (2) it's much simpler to think about the game if you believe that talent is what drives performance.  

 

I loved hearing Al Horford interviewed after he got a big bucket to seal a win for the Celtics in the playoffs.   He got the ball one on one against a small guy in the paint, backed in and scored.  Now, Horford is a good player, for sure, but he is not in the top 5 centers or power forwards in the league.  What he say?   He said "Brad Stevens is a genius."   He said every day in practice Stevens teaches them new stuff he's dreamed up, and that's what gives the Celtics an edge.  Football is more complicated than basketball, so the value of the coaching is increased.   

 

Bringing it back to the Bills, it means that having even the 32nd best talent in the league, which I doubt is true for the Bills, they simply aren't that much different, talent-wise, from 25., are even #15.   I'll take Belichick and the 32 best talent over any other coach and the 15th best talent.   

 

I don't know how good McDermott is.  So far, he's been pretty good, and he should be better in his second season than his first.   

 

That's why I still think the Bills are pushing .500 again this season.  

Okay, that's a pretty impressive argument. I don't have an immediate counter-argument to your numbers analysis. Do we or should we trust Castillo to be the fella to coach his players to maximum efficiency?

 

 

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16 minutes ago, Dr. Who said:

Okay, that's a pretty impressive argument. I don't have an immediate counter-argument to your numbers analysis. Do we or should we trust Castillo to be the fella to coach his players to maximum efficiency?

 

 

Thanks for reading it.

 

Now, Castillo IS the possible weak link.  Or Daboll.  

 

When the Bills get a new guy, player or coach, posters go nuts, either raving about the guy or saying he's horrible.   I try not to get too excited about any of them, because I haven't seen any of them before.  (I only pay attention to the Bills.   Once in a while I may know someone by reputation, but generally I'm a blank slate.)

 

When Castillo arrived, everyone went nuts about how horrible he was.  The noise was so loud and so continuous, I thought maybe he was a problem.  Still, I thought it's better to wait and see.  What I saw last season didn't impress me.  My theory is that if you take okay NFL talent. which is what I think the Bills have, you can get good play out of them with coaching.   I didn't see what I'd call good play from the O line.   In fact, it regressed from the preceding season.   So I do worry about Castillo.   I also worry when people say he's a long-time buddy of McDermott, and that maybe McDermott's judgment is clouded about him.   McD was quick to fire Dennison, but he kept Castillo.

 

Here's what I'm hoping:  I think the O line coach's job is to teach technique.   Study film and work with the guys to get their footwork right, their center of gravity right, their hand work right.   If they're doing that stuff right, the O line can still look lousy if the offensive scheme is bad, the play calling is bad, etc.  In other words, what can make the oline look bad is the offensive coordinator.   It's the OC who creates the scheme, not the O line coach. The O line coach just teaches the scheme. So I'm hoping that we'll see these guys perform satisfactorily because Daboll knows what he's doing.  That's my hope.  

 

Now, no one knows if Daboll can do the job.   And even if he can, I have to admit that the guards seemed to be getting pushed around a lot in pre-season.  

 

AND I'm not saying the oline is good.  All I've been saying is that there isn't a lot of difference in talent among most lines. The difference is coaching.  We'll see.   

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At the end of the day we are not hearing "it isnt easy to win in the NFL" or Is this thing on, cause its gunna be". Also we dont have a couple of clowns riding the double bike downtown. We dont have Tyrod clearing his throat in the mic every sentence and we dont have a drought hanging over our shoulders. Its not without hope people!

On 9/2/2018 at 7:23 PM, DC Tom said:

 

Yes, but remember the words of Dwight D. Eisenhower: "Don't be fatuous, George."

These are both true but remember Bluto:

Nothing is over until we decide it is! Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor? Hell no!  And it ain't over now.

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On 9/2/2018 at 3:31 PM, John from Riverside said:

When I comb through the transactions and our team has taken shape I feel that

 

- There simply was not the move that was going to make our team significantly better.....even after final cuts I am not seeing "that guy" that is going to come in and change whatever our win total is going to be this year. 

 

- I think that our coaching is so good that it got every last bit of mayo out of the jar last year.   I expect the same thing to happen this year.

 

- This year was all about getting the qb of the future.....biting the bullet on the huge dead cap....and looking towards next year with what is it....NINE picks and possibly around 100 million in cap space.....

 

- but what if....just WHAT if.....this team finds a way to be competative?  Now the team looks to be in GREAT shape heading into the following season with a strong draft under their belt, another set of 9 picks, and a lot of cap space.

I believe we will find a way to be competitive if we can force key turnovers.  That’s the only reason we made the playoffs last year.  I think the big 3 in the secondary will be up to the task but turnovers are a big part luck.  Hopefully we’ll get some love again this year.  Without the turnovers, I think we may be in trouble unless the OL improves drastically/Daboll calls the best plays in the league   

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On 9/2/2018 at 3:55 PM, COTC said:

Oh woe is me!! This thread is depressing...

 

Good Vibes lead to Good things. 

 

We will improve and build from last year. 

You shut up with that crazy talk!

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