1 - Taylor decision won't be rushed**
Sean McDermott said at his introductory press conference that most of his decisions in the coming weeks and months will be a process— including on quarterback Tyrod Taylor.
McDermott said that he and Taylor talked on the phone Thursday and met briefly in person for the first time in the facility on Friday.
McDermott coached against Taylor one time, as the Bills quarterback threw eight passes against the Panthers in the first game of the 2015 preseason. Other than that, the first-year head coach said that he has a lot of work to do in evaluating Taylor.
"I appreciate his willingness to reach out," McDermott said. "Fine young man. I remember going against Tyrod a little bit in the preseason. I watched him in crossover tape. I know the skillset, I know what he brings to the table, but at this time it is premature to expand any further than that. I'm going to go through and be diligent in the evaluation of the roster along with Doug (Whaley) in doing this the right way."
When McDermott was pressed about the Bills having to make a decision in the near future about the quarterback position, he said that there is much more than just the product on the field that goes into it.
"I know what I'm looking for," McDermott said. "I know what a winner looks like, I know what it tastes like. I've been around a winner and that's what I plan on bringing here.
"I'm going to go through and evaluate every position group, every player the same way I do everything else: a methodic nature. With respect to specific players, Tyrod in this case, they'll be a time for that. Right now it's about this organization and 'we', and getting this organization the way it needs to look."
New Bills Head Coach Sean McDermott arrives in Buffalo with his family and is introduced to the staff and media.
2 - Danny Crossman retained **While McDermott offered few specifics at his press conference, he announced that special teams coordinator Danny Crossman had been retained.
Crossman has been with the Bills since 2013, coaching under Doug Marrone, Rex Ryan, and now McDermott.
The 49-year-old has 14 years of coaching experience in the NFL, including seven with the Carolina Panthers. Although the two never overlapped in Carolina, hiring coaches with experience is something that will be crucial.
Other than Crossman, McDermott wouldn't confirm anyone else he's been talking with, and said that nothing else has been finalized.
"It's an active situation," McDermott said. "As soon as I was offered the job, I went to work on immediately putting this staff together. I believe in a quality staff and hiring guys that are great teachers, great motivators, and care immensely about these players. Again, we will put them in a position to make them successful. I'm going to build around guys with great energy, tremendous teachers."
McDermott has worked under coaches such as Ron Rivera, Andy Reid and Jim Johnson, and knows the value of having a coach who can do more than call the right plays.
"You win with people," McDermott said. "This is a people-driven business. X's and O's are important, you better have x's and o's but I want guys that care about people, that care about these players and go about it the right way."
He added that he hasn't decided whether or not he would call the plays on defense, or if he would delegate that responsibility to his coordinator. He did say that being involved in every aspect of the team will be important to him.
"I'm going to be involved in all three phases of this football team: offense, defense and special teams," McDermott said. "When you're a defensive coordinator, you spend a heck of a lot of time looking at the offensive side of the ball so I feel comfortable with that as my background for the offensive side of the ball."
3 - Whaley keeps controlWhaley and McDermott confirmed on Wednesday that Whaley would retain control of the 53-man roster, and that the Bills would continue with the organizational structure they've had for several years.
While that structure has been criticized in recent weeks, McDermott said that he had no problem with it, and that it was explained to him thoroughly in his meetings with Buffalo's front office.
"I'm very comfortable with the situation, and I wouldn't take this job if I wasn't comfortable with the situation," McDermott said. "We've had extensive conversations throughout the interview process and they (Terry and Kim) have gone through great lengths to make sure I'm comfortable with things and Doug as well."
Whaley added that the Bills feel that how things are set up now, gives the team the best chance to win.
"This is a team effort," Whaley said. "We're working together to get this franchise to where we know it should be, and it starts at the top. The Pegula's mantra is that we're working together, we're not working for them and that perpetuates through every level of this organization.
"His input is valued and respected," Whaley added. "Not only his, but his whole coaching staff."
4 - Holding players accountable **Sammy Watkins and LeSean McCoy said that players needed more accountability and discipline coming from their next head coach. McDermott made it clear on Friday that everybody in the organization—not just players—will be held to that certain standard.
"It's about a culture," McDermott said. "I think if you talk to the coaches and players I've been around, I think they would tell you that hasn't been a problem with me."
McDermott has been described by former players and coaches as having a much different coaching style than Rex Ryan. He says that mentality starts with him and works its way down.
"I believe in doing things a certain way. As a leader, if you don't hold yourself accountable, then it all breaks down from there."
He acknowledged Buffalo's 17-year playoff drought, but said that his ultimate goal is to build a daily standard of winning. A process, he says, that begins off the field and then translates to how the team plays on Sundays.
"One of the key things that I believe in in promoting that culture and doing things the right way is to have an identity on the field, in all three phases," McDermott said. "It's about doing things the right way, playing hard all the time and smart, disciplined and tough football. A product that these fans will be proud of on a weekly basis."
5 - Bills were best job on the marketNot only did Terry Pegula say that McDermott was the leading candidate for the job from day one, but McDermott said that Buffalo was the best job on the market.
McDermott interviewed for two of the other five openings in the NFL, but the Bills were his favorite for two reasons: the owners and the fan base.
"Mainly, the ownership of Terry and Kim. I've seen what great ownership looks like, and we have two great owners in Terry and Kim that are really committed to this football team and to Buffalo. Secondly, when you talk about a fan base, I've been up here and played here before and I've seen those fans at a capacity crowd hanging over that railing, screaming when we were trying to do something on the other sideline. That's what I want to be apart of, that's what it's all about. I look forward to recreating that again in our stadium."
McDermott added that he doesn't care about what the outside perception might have been surrounding the team, and that he did his homework on Buffalo.
"I'm a pretty meticulous and thorough guy," McDermott said. "In my opinion, this was the best job on the market. Some people may not agree, but it's important how I feel."