A 3-0 start is certainly something to celebrate especially when it's been 16 years since the last such beginning to an NFL season for the Bills. But this young Buffalo team isn't getting giddy by any means. They know there are still 13 games left on their regular season slate.
"We still have work to do," said Donte Whitner. "We had a lot of mistakes in the game we just played. We came out with the win and we're in first place in the division right now. We'll start our division schedule soon and we'll see where it goes."
That comment may as well have come out of the mouth of Buffalo's head coach. For the past two seasons Jauron has preached looking ahead only to the next game, and not reveling in the prior week's accomplishments or wallowing in its setbacks. Now in year three an emerging young team is still young, but wise enough to adopt their head coach's approach to the game.
Not much raises the ire of Dick Jauron, even on game day. Conversely, not much keeps him down either. He's always positive, but he's far from boisterous. He's always projected an even-keeled approach on game day, at practice and according to players in the meeting rooms as well. Jauron stays focused on the task at hand regardless of what unexpected things happen during the course of a game.
His players reflected that last Sunday against Oakland. When miscues in the first half affected the consistency of Buffalo's play on offense, the unit didn't panic. When forced to deal with a handful of short fields to defend, Perry Fewell's men did not panic either. And special teams despite a long opening kickoff rebounded.
"Right when we'd get something going we'd have a penalty or a fumble or an interception or we had some big play that their offense made," said Trent Edwards of Sunday's game. "It didn't really seem like everything was going in our direction. We could have sat there and thought it was just not our day and took it on the chin. But it goes back to our head coach."
There's so much respect in Buffalo's locker room for Jauron that the team's play has come to resemble their coach's demeanor.
"That's part of it," admitted Ryan Denney. "Coach Jauron is very calm and very positive. Even though we had just seven points entering the fourth quarter we understood through him it's part of the game and (to) keep going."
Denney also believes the team has matured through the trials and adversity of the past two seasons and has come to understand the pitfalls of getting too high or too low.
"We were up and down emotionally a bit too much the past few years," said Denney. "(We've) adjusted that and been more consistent and calm and avoided that swing of emotion that we had in the past."
Football by nature is an emotional game so players are going to get excited or even frustrated at times, but the Bills have learned not to get so wrapped up in the events of the game that it affects their play.
"As a defense that can hurt you if you get too emotional at a crucial point in the game as opposed to going out there and taking it a play at a time and playing hard," Denney said.
Following a first half last week where nothing was going right on offense, you might expect there to be a bunch of frustrated players in the locker room last Sunday. But the players focused on solutions for the second half rather than grumbling about the half that was.
"Nobody was happy, but they were pretty determined," said Jauron of Sunday's mood at halftime. "We were talking about situations. What we're going to do on specific plays. This is what we think we can do, this is what we have to do. This is how they beat us. Everybody has to bite the bullet and just go back to work."
And that's been Jauron's message since he's been in Buffalo. When you win enjoy it, but get back to work. When you lose don't accept it, but get back to work.
"It's very, very hard to win in this league," said Jauron. "It's just hard to win a game because anybody you play is going to be capable of beating you and you've got to play at a high level. We just have to keep preparing and keep playing hard and when they make a play, and you know they're going to make plays, because they're all good. You just have to regroup and leave it behind and go to the next one and keep fighting. And (Sunday) was a great example. Guys just kept fighting."
Seeing the positive results that have come out of that kind of approach has only reinforced to the players that Jauron's method is a good one for long term success. That's why the players not only want to win for each other, but for their head coach as well.
"Our head coach I feel is one of the best in this business," said Edwards. "I want to win for my teammates, but more so I want to win for my head coach. That's really what it comes down to and I think a lot of other guys in that locker room have the same feeling that I do about coach Jauron. Just the type of person he is and what he brings to the table every day for us, it's just a pleasure to be able to play under him."