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Bills Today: McDermott describes differences between DC and HC

Posted Jan 15, 2018

Here's the Bills news of note for Jan. 15th.


1 - McDermott describes differences from DC to HC
He’s completed 19 years in the NFL, but 2017 was his first as a head coach. Sean McDermott shared what it’s like transitioning from a defensive coordinator to HC.

McDermott came to Buffalo after spending six seasons in Carolina as their DC. With the Panthers, his main responsibility was preparing a defense, while HC Ron Rivera stuck to the decision making. In 2017, McDermott learned what it’s like being the head honcho, and that included the difficulties of throwing the challenge flag.

“One of the things you learn in those situations is, until you’re the guy doing it, it’s not as easy as it looks,” McDermott said on the John Murphy Show. “That said, there’s some things we did well in those situations. There are some valuable lessons I learned the first year that I’m going to try and be better at in the second go around.”

Another thing McDermott learned from being a HC is distributing responsibilities. With 63 players, a handful of positions, and three phases of the game, it’s impossible to oversee all of that. For example, McDermott brought his 4-3 defense to Buffalo, but elected to have DC Leslie Frazier call plays on game days.

Considering he ended the team’s 17-year playoff drought, he handled his first run on the job exceptionally well. But as McDermott always says, there’s room to grow.

“Yeah there’s a fine line in there, just like every job. If you try and over prepare sometimes you end up missing. Or if you hold on too tight you end up missing some things you shouldn’t have missed or you over analyze things,” he said. “I’m sure I’ll find my sweet spot as we continue to move forward. Just like I did as a position coach, and I did as a coordinator, you tend if you do things the right way, if you handle the job the right way, I believe you tend to get better with experience.”

2 - Which player didn’t miss a down this season?
There was only one Buffalo Bills player this season to play every single snap on their side of the ball. That was center, Eric Wood, who played 100-percent of the offensive snaps.

It was reassuring to see Wood return to consistent health. In 2016, he only played 53-percent of the snaps, as he was placed on injured reserve on Nov. 14, after suffering a broken leg.

Though 2016 was plagued with a devastating injury, Wood’s remained relatively injury free throughout his nine-year career. Since 2013, he’s played 100-percent of the offensive snaps three different times. That includes 2014, where he was on the field for 99.7-percent of the plays.

Wood’s been a reliable center and captain for Buffalo since they picked him in the first-round of the 2009 NFL Draft.

Aside from Wood, there were some honorable mentions for players who barely missed a down. His fellow offensive lineman, Jordan Mills, played 97-percent of the snaps at right tackle. While Preston Brown, Richie Incognito, and Tre’Davious White were on the field for 99-percent of the plays.

3 - Former Bills executive becomes Texans GM
On Saturday, the Bills former VP of Player Personnel was hired as the Texans General Manager. After one season in Buffalo, Brian Gaine is heading to Houston.

The move makes sense, as Gaine was Houston’s Director of Player Personnel from 2015-2016 before coming to Buffalo in 2017.

“Our committee was unanimous in praise for Brian Gaine and we are all aligned in our philosophy on how to continue to build our roster and win a championship,” said Texans founder, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Robert C. McNair. “Brian is an incredibly smart, hardworking individual that understands the importance of good communication. We couldn’t be more excited about naming him our new general manager.”

It’s unclear who’s going to replace Gaine, but the Bills have some credible personnel who could be potential candidates. For example, Malik Boyd, who’s the team’s Director of Pro Personnel. Also, Terrance Gray, who’s the Director of College Scouting. Each has been in the NFL for well over 10 years.

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