Bills Tweetbag!

"The franchise’s identity has become what the coach says."

Jeremy White
August 04, 2019 - 9:23 am

Photo: Mark Konezny - USA TODAY Sports

This week, we will hit the NFL Preseason with full force!

Listen to your team news NOW.

Thursday night gives us a full slate of fake football games where we talk about the improvements and contributions of some players that we will never talk of again, and will never remember existing in the first place. The players in those jobs face some big time pressure, no doubt. For the rest of us, we can have some fun with it and start to line up our expectations for the real show, which starts in about a month.

And with that, we’ll roll through some of your tweets for the preseason football tweet bag! Away we go!

*****

Ok, I will now be accepting the position of “Guy that randomly sets your fantasy football draft order”.

If you agree to have me do this, I shall promise you randomness, so long as you understand that the random thing will be how I select the order. I’m not doing names out of a hat. I’ll figure out some way, apply that measure, and roll with it. For Cam and his friends here, I’ve chosen to roll in reverse order of current baby name popularity. I will be using the names as provided, and using the app Baby Names.

So here’s your order:
 

  1. Yazz - Presumably not his actual name. Doesn’t matter.
  2. Matt (1,997)
  3. Cam (1,931)
  4. Nick (1,415)
  5. Joey (792)
  6. Joe (695)
  7. Ben (692)
  8. Patrick (189)
  9. Alex (153)
  10. Tyler (119)
  11. Ryan (46)
  12. David (22)

Bet you weren’t expecting that, eh? Apparently it differentiates between full names and nicknames. Who got helped the most here? Well Yazz, of course, but Matt really moves up the board by not having that “hew” at the end. Good luck gents. Bigger question is… why aren’t you running an auction draft by now?

*****

This could be fun. Let me know what your punishments are, if your leagues have them. I generally think the shame of drafting a player that’s already been drafted is pretty good, but I’d be willing to bet that lots of fantasy leagues force the person to forfeit the pick. Maybe a t-shirt? A cone of shame to be worn for the rest of the draft? The tough part is with the proliferation of those giant draft boards, and online drafts, it’s harder and harder to have someone think a player is available when he is not. 

*****

Absolutely not. It’s most definitely optimistic, but it’s not too optimistic. I think they can get there and I’d imagine most Bills fans think that they *can* get there, too. To me there’s a huge difference between thinking it can happen, and expecting that it will. There are a decent number of things that have to go right for this team to get to the 10-win mark, and most of them have to do with the offense. The defense likely needs to stay healthy, but the offense will need:

  • The line to improve
  • The run game to show up (they rely on it greatly, so they’ll need it to work)
  • Allen to take a step forward.  It likely doesn’t have to be that big, but he’ll need to take one.
  • The wide receivers to get the job done. I don’t see this as a given, necessarily. The Bills have a quarterback that might need some bigger catch radii out there, and instead the coach is openly calling the group “The Smurfs”. I’m not saying that can’t work, but that it is a bit of a deviation from what we might expect.
  • Anything at tight end? I just don’t see counting on Dawson Knox as a thing I’m ready to do yet.

If the Bills get… two of those things to pan out nicely, they’ll be in the mix. If they get all five, then 10 wins is absolutely in the mix. I think it might be the most fun kind of season, to be honest. Raised expectations, while still feeling that any moves forward are growth toward something bigger. Of course, time will tell on each.

*****

He’s the safest safe person that’s ever been safe and I’m gonna keep saying it. I won’t even couch it with a “barring a complete collapse” because I think Sean McDermott could survive a 4-12 season, a brutal year from Josh Allen, and getting lit up on defense. I don’t happen to think those three things are incredibly likely, but in my view, the ownership of this team believes in the coach. The franchise’s identity has become what the coach says. Think about your Buffalo Bills these days… it’s about process and culture and belief more than it ever has been. The relationship between the Bills and their coach hasn’t ever been this strong in the time that I’ve been watching the team. This is Sean McDermott’s team, and for all intents and purposes it’s his franchise. He’s the face of the franchise until Josh Allen takes over, if he does. When you think about Allen, he falls right in line with it as well. Run. Play tough defense. Work ethic. Weather. The Bills are Sean McDermott.

*****

The true sunken cost of a quarterback “flaming out” is sticking with him too long. I’m also not quite sure what the drawing board is… drafting another quarterback? You can do that, and be good soon. If the guy is good, you’ll be good. If Allen struggles to take a step forward this year, I’d bet that the Bills bet on it happening the following year, and continue to bring him along as a manage-the-game guy. Allen, when drafted, was raw. He wasn’t even really supposed to play as much as he did last year. For how long will the Bills view him as raw? I’d bet a good two full years. This is the growth year. Next year the focus intensifies.

*****

Great question. This is hard to answer because Rasmus Dahlin is already awesome. Will his climb to the top of the league be more dramatic than what we might be hoping to see out of Allen? What would be equal jumps? I think the correct answer is to hope that it’s Allen, just because he can graduate to being a top half of the league quarterback, while Dahlin would only be moving from awesome to awesomer.  

*****

Of course not.  

*****

One thing. Cost.

*****

Going straight on the odds… Arsenal.

  • Bills to make playoffs: +300
  • Arsenal to finish top-four:  +115

I’m not quite sure which is the better bet.  If there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that Arsenal is quite good at falling flat and missing out on expectations. That said, it’s year two for Unai Emery, and perhaps his teams will find a little something that Arsene Wenger couldn’t over the better part of the last decade.

*****

KeyBank Center. HEYOOOOOO!!!!!!

*****

This is most definitely going to be a future “choose one for the rest of your life” poll. Stay tuned.

*****

Thanks for all the tweets.  

Stay safe.

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