1 - Beane’s expectations for Josh Allen’s second year
When Brandon Beane became general manager of the Bills he inherited a roster that wasn’t his, including his quarterback. Beane positioned the Bills to take Josh Allen in last year’s draft and finally get the guy he wanted to improve the offense.
Beane, and Bills fans, saw a lot from the Wyoming product in his first season and is encouraged by what he saw, especially toward the end of the year. Beane went on the Adam Schefter podcast to discuss his expectations for his quarterback in 2019.
“Some of the improvement we saw late in the year was his decision making,” Beane said. “People get on Josh about his accuracy. I would argue it’s decision making. It’s about Josh taking the underneath crosser or the check down instead of trying to fit the ball in 18-22 yards down the sideline, in-the-hole shot that many quarterbacks don’t try to make because they don’t have the arm strength. You see guys with strong arms who can do it and we want Josh to do it at the right time, but sometimes it’s okay just to check the ball down so it’s second-and-short or second-and-medium instead of incomplete or an interception.”
While fans were discouraged by Allen having to deal with injuries in his first season, Beane sees it as a positive sign and a reason for that late season success.
“Josh improved during the year,” Beane said. “He did some really good things. People nationally probably saw his athletic ability. The injury was unfortunate, but maybe a blessing in disguise because he got to see Derek Anderson and Matt Barkley work. When he came back he had a renewed sense of how to play quarterback. Just leading the huddle and the calls and checks and audibles, all those intricacies of the pre-snap stuff that it takes to play quarterback.”
2 - E.J. Gaines transition will be easier second time around
E.J. Gaines first came to the Bills in 2017 as a result of the Sammy Watkins trade in August. Gaines had to quickly learn a new scheme and new teammates after the trade, all while competing for a starting job. Gaines excelled his year on the Bills roster, starting all 11 games in which he played.
Now Gaines will have a full offseason to prepare for the season and play in a relatively unchanged scheme from the last time he was here.
“It was tough last time I got traded it was short notice and not a lot of time to prepare,” Gaines said. “I’ll be ready this year with all the time I have to prepare and come in and I already know the scheme and game plan so I feel like I can come in and compete for a starting job.”
Gaines is expected to compete with teammates Kevin Johnson and Levi Wallace for the starting spot. Wallace was a diamond in the rough for the Bills last season and is the incumbent in the battle to play opposite Tre’Davious White this season. Wallace was not with the Bills when Gaines was here in 2017, but Gaines is still close with current members of the secondary from his first go round with the club.
“That really makes it even better,” Gaines said. “I’ve already talked to guys like Micah Hyde and Jordan Poyer just to find out what they’re thinking about this season. They’re ready to get started just like I am. It’s great to have those guys still here who I’ve already worked with, who I’ve already won with, who I’ve already had success with. It’s a good thing.”
3 - PFF names Ty Nsekhe top-five move of the offseason
The Bills signing of offensive linemen Ty Nsekhe has already been called one of the top-five moves of the offseason. Not Antonio Brown to the Raiders or Le’Veon Bell to the Jets nor Trey Flowers to the Lions were named a top move by Pro Football Focus’ Sam Monson.
Monson’s top five list includes Odell Beckham Jr. to the Browns, Adrian Amos to Green Bay, Dee Ford to San Francisco, Matt Paradis to Carolina and Nsekhe to the Bills, in that order.
Nsekhe is 33-years-old, but has little wear and tear compared to most offensive linemen his age. Nsekhe has started only 16 games across his five years in the league and didn’t play in the NFL from 2012-2015 essentially starting his pro career at age 30.
Nsekhe is a monstrous 6-8, 330 pounds and could be a key cog in the rebuilt Buffalo offensive line this season.