Bills Training Camp has wrapped up with two weeks left before the season opener at home against the New York Jets. Plenty of positives came out of camp, so here's our training camp awards ahead of the 2020 season.
Offensive MVP: WR Stefon Diggs
It didn't take long to see wide receiver Stefon Diggs was the obvious offensive MVP of training camp. Throughout camp, Diggs made contested catches machine and showed why he's touchdown threat in the red zone. Diggs showed off his athleticism every day by making big-time plays. The Bills want to score more points in 2020, and Diggs will hopefully play a major role in accomplishing that goal.
Defensive MVP: DE Mario Addison
It was tough to choose just one person from the defense because several players had exceptional training camp practices. My eyes gravitated towards the new defensive line additions. For that reason, I'm giving it to Mario Addison. Addison doesn't look like he's 32. He said he feels like he's 25, and I agree based on what he's shown in practices. Addison is versatile, and he has the speed and strength cause havoc when rushing the passer. Defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier said Addison quickly became one of the defense's leaders this summer. He'll have a great impact in the locker room as a veteran leader as well as on the field with his pass rush abilities.
Most Improved: QB Josh Allen
Josh Allen made several improvements last season, and from watching practices the last two weeks you can see he's making more of them this season. Allen seems to be building more chemistry with returning players like John Brown, Cole Beasley, Dawson Knox and Devin Singletary. Allen's putting in extra hours to get the timing down with new players like Stefon Diggs, Gabriel Davis and Zack Moss. Players and coaches have observed better decision-making from Allen and more confidence from the third-year quarterback.
Offensive rookie standout: WR Gabe Davis
This fourth-round receiver has exceeded expectations from what media thought he could do in his first training camp, especially without minicamp and OTAs. I'm sure general manger Brandon Beane knew exactly what they were getting when they drafted Davis. The rookie has made his presence known by having at least one notable reception in almost every practice. What's different about Davis is his physicality for a receiver that's listed as 6'2, 210 pounds. The rookie also looks like he's done a great job picking up the playbook thanks to the help he has gotten from the quarterbacks and veteran receivers.
Honorable mention: RB Zack Moss
I have to mention rookie running back Zack Moss, too. Just like Davis, Moss has shown he has the talent to be a key contributor to the offense's success this season. Moss is a strong runner and reliable in the receiving game. The rookie has had an impressive camp by showcasing the versatility he adds to the team.
Defensive rookie standout: DE A.J. Epenesa
A.J. Epenesa has held his own throughout camp while being tasked with learning multiple positions on the defensive line. The rookie has flashed showing his strength and pass-rush ability during drills. Epenesa will continue to grow through the season as he learns from a room full of veterans.
Camp surprise: K Tyler Bass
Kicker Tyler Bass garnered attention during the Senior Bowl when he put his leg strength on display in front of many scouts and general managers. The Georgia Southern product's longest field goal in college was from 50 yards. Although after the Senior Bowl and social media posts showcasing his leg strength, many thought his range could go way beyond 50 yards. It's not easy for a rookie to compete with a 12-year veteran regardless of position and win the job. Bass held his own during the kicking portions of practice where he proved his consistency and leg strength by making several field goals of 50 or more yards.
Honorable mention: Isaiah McKenzie
We all know Isaiah McKenzie is the jet sweep king from what we saw last year. McKenzie had an admirable camp displaying why he's a valuable player to the team. The receiver had some notable catches during practices that showed off his versatility as a wide out.
Best comeback: Harrison Phillips
It's not easy to come back from an ACL tear. Add a pandemic into the mix, and it gets even harder to make a comeback. Phillips went to extreme lengths to make sure his rehabilitation progress was not slowed down while in quarantine over the offseason. After his first practice back, Phillips said he was elated to be competing with his brothers again. It took 330 days till he was able to put the pads back on, and you have to believe he's going to do everything he can to make an impact on the defensive line in 2020.