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Bills Today | Former Bills coach a finalist for NFL 100 All-Time Team

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1. Former Bills coach a finalist for NFL 100 All-Time Team

On Monday, the NFL announced its finalists for running backs on the NFL 100 All-Time Team, two former Bills in Thurman Thomas and O.J. Simpson made the list. Following the announcement, the NFL released 20 head coaches who are finalists to make the team as well. Former Bills head coach Marv Levy made the list.

Levy coached the Bills from 1986 to 1997 and was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2001. He led the Bills to four straight Super Bowls and was named the NFL Coach of the Year in 1988.

Ten of the 20 head coaches who were named finalists will make the NFL 100 All-Time Team. NFL Network will air the premiere of the NFL 100 All-Time Team on Friday, Nov. 22 at 8 p.m. The show will air for six weeks through Week 17 of the regular season with the ten head coaches being announced through the first five shows.

2. The Ringer does a deep dive into Josh Allen’s growth in year two

Josh Allen is showing several signs of improvement in year two with the Bills. Whether it’s his ability to recognize a defense and successfully make a check at the line of scrimmage, increase in completion percentage, development in decision-making and much more—Allen is growing in more ways than one.

The Ringer’s Robert Mays wrote a piece on Allen in his second season and dove into what this growth looks like compared to where he was at during his college days at Wyoming. In the story, Mays details a couple meetings between the Bills and Allen during the draft process.

At dinner the night before his classroom and throwing sessions, Allen was engaging and confident in front of a potentially intimidating audience: Beane, the Bills’ owners, and head coach Sean McDermott, among others. The next day, offensive coordinator Brian Daboll gave Allen a 30-minute tutorial about the Bills offensive system before putting him through a rapid-fire quiz about the material. His recall and acumen left a serious impression on Beane and others. At that point, he had checked the majority of the boxes that Buffalo was looking for in a franchise quarterback. His physical skill set was apparent, and now he had charmed the team’s leadership and aced the mental test.

With several new faces on offense and less than a year of chemistry with a lot of receivers, Allen points to offensive coordinator Brian Daboll as a big reason for his maturation.

As Allen has grown more comfortable with both the Bills’ new personnel and his progressions in the offense, he’s been able to tailor his decision-making in a way he couldn’t as a rookie. He points to a play from a 31-21 win over the Dolphins in Week 7, in which he dumped a short pass to DiMarco on a second-and-20 and the fullback rumbled for a 27-yard gain. Allen admits that last season he likely would have spent too long fixating on the play’s deep option and never made it back to DiMarco. That maturation derives from the ongoing conversations he’s had with Daboll about surviving to play another down. “We’re really focused on no. 1 situational awareness,” Daboll says. “We’re still working on that to this day. Doing whatever we’ve got to do to keep us in positive percentages.”

Mays points out in his article that Allen believes it’s important to own his mistakes and the things he needs to work on. And in turn, fixing the faults will hopefully unveil the quarterback general manager Brandon Beane and head coach Sean McDermott know Allen can become.

During the draft process, the Bills saw Allen as a franchise cornerstone who could eventually put them over the top. He has a ways to go, but he’s proved to be both deeply aware of his faults and firmly invested in fixing them. “I don’t want to just be the best quarterback to come out of my class,” Allen says. “I want to be the best quarterback in the league at some point. I know it’s not going to happen overnight. I’ve got a lot of work to do. But it’s something that’s my goal.”

3. PFF names this Bill the team's most underrated player

PFF graded the most underrated player on each NFL team and named safety Jordan Poyer as the most underestimated player on the Bills.

Having earned a PFF grade of 77.7 that ranks 15th among all safeties entering Week 12, Jordan Poyer has been great in all phases for the Bills. In his 390 coverage snaps in 2019, Poyer has allowed just nine receptions, with the longest being 18 yards. Along with that, his run defense has been stout, as he currently ranks 10th in PFF run-defense grade (79.1), and he has also made plays in the pass-rush with six pressures on his 24 pass-rushing snaps. Poyer is missing tackles at an impressively low rate, too, with just four misses on 73 attempts. No one circles the wagons like the Buffalo Bills, and Poyer has been an instrumental piece in that.

Poyer leads the team with 46 solo tackles and is second on the team with 72 total tackles.

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