Here's the Bills news of note for July 28th.
**1 - Kyle thinks Dareus has never looked better
**On the John Murphy Show, Kyle Williams gave a wide-ranging interview about his goals for the upcoming season. He also gave his opinion on the status of his linemate Marcell Dareus. Williams said that he likes Dareus' mindset heading into camp. Here’s an excerpt from the interview.
"I've been here 24 hours and this has been his [Dareus] best 24 hours here," said Williams. "All of it [mentally and physically]. Now listen. There's tomorrow, and that's true for all of us. But, right now, I like where he's at."
Williams stated that he thinks Dareus has exemplified through his actions that he's ready to compete at training camp this year. Williams believes Dareus could be reaching a new level of maturity and better understanding of the effort needed to succeed in the NFL.
Williams also noted that he never truly considered retirement. He stated that he was simply waiting to see what would happen during the offseason. At no point did the 12-year veteran stop preparing for the 2017 season.
Rather, he stated that he always had one eye on Buffalo. Once Williams saw the new coaching staff, and spoke to coach McDermott, he was confident he would be put in a position to succeed this season. He stated that his motivation isn't based upon individual goals, but rather by being a better teammate and winning a championship.
"I want to be a champion," said Williams. "There's no other way about it. Guys that are motivated by winning, competing, their teammates, and their want to be the best version of themselves for their teammates – those guys last, those guys stick around. I train for that, to win, and to be a champion. All that other stuff, and all the individual stuff, has been a byproduct of wanting to be a great teammate."
With a motivated Marcell Dareus and scheme that Williams is confident in, the Bills defensive line could be a force this season.
2 - Bills offense predicted to thrive under Dennison
NFL.com predicted several future headlines for the upcoming NFL season. Writer Jerry Bergman stated that he thinks the Bills offense will experience early success under offensive coordinator Rick Dennison. Here’s what he had to say.
With the Orchard Park suits finally supporting Taylor, the *Bills quarterback starts the season on fire, finding accuracy outside the pocket and involving Sammy Watkins more. Shady is slippery in September, as usual, and is nose-to-nose with David Johnson for the most scrimmage yards through one month.*
Bergman highlighted several of the changes Dennison will be making to the Bills' offensive scheme. Taylor will be used in play-action more often, giving him greater time to find receivers outside of the pocket. Bergman thinks this will allow Taylor to reach even higher-levels of success in the passing game.
Bergman also thinks that McCoy could have an even better season this year. With a run-first offense under Dennison, McCoy will continue to get a large portion of the offensive snaps this season. In addition, McCoy could see more catches out of the backfield, meaning he could certainly eclipse his 1,623 yards from scrimmage in 2016.
3 - LeSean McCoy predicted to lead the league in rushing
Elliot Harrison, of NFL.com, made several bold predictions for the AFC this season. Among those predictions was the assertion that LeSean McCoy will lead the league in rushing in 2017. Here’s an excerpt of what Harrison stated.
Despite missing almost two full games, the uber confident tailback backed up his football bravado with 1,267 yards, 14 total touchdowns and a sterling 5.41 yards per carry, which was third in the NFL," said Harrison. "He also caught 50 balls…McCoy seems to fly under the radar amid the widespread fascination with *David Johnson, Ezekiel Elliott and Le'Veon Bell, but he should absolutely be mentioned in their company among the league's elite. The Bills led the NFL in rushing last year…The run-first philosophy in Buffalo shouldn't change much under new [coach] Sean McDermott.*
McCoy was one of the most effective running backs in the NFL last year. With the combination of a run first scheme and Tyrod Taylor's running ability, McCoy has thrived in a wide-open offense that is built for him to succeed.
McCoy's slippery and explosive running style was on full display last season. According to ProFootballFocus, McCoy was the second most explosive runner in the NFL last year. Forty-four and a half percent of McCoy's rushing yards came on runs of over 15 yards last season.
Under Dennison's offensive philosophy, McCoy could certainly push for the league lead in rushing yards in 2017.