1. The greatest lesson learned from Buffalo's Wild Card loss
There were a host of lessons that Bills quarterback Josh Allen took from last January's Wild Card loss in Houston. But for him there was one that stood out from the others.
Allen shared the most prominent thing he learned from that playoff experience in a recent appearance on SiriusXM's Mad Dog Sports Radio with host Adam Schein.
"One I think it proves is how important getting a home playoff game is," Allen said. "That's really what our mindset is going into this year. We want to make sure we're playing at home come January. There are a lot of things we have to go through to get there. Coach McDermott preaches playoff caliber and we're going to continue to strive for that and try to put our team on track to make the playoffs.
"If we can get what we want we're going to be playing in Buffalo come January and give these fans something we can really talk about and use to our advantage with how rowdy the crowd is and how calm you are at home. That's really one thing I learned from the Houston game among other things, but that's what sticks out the most."
When asked about the team's division aspirations, Allen said they're looking to take the division just like their three AFC East rivals.
"It's as important as it is every year," he said. "We want to go out there and play our best football. We want to win the division obviously. We're not dumb. We know what the deal is now in our division. We want to go out there and compete, but again that's every year. That's every team. They want to go out and win their division and it's no different for us. We want to go out there and compete, take it one game at a time and try to play playoff caliber football for coach McDermott."
2. Dion Dawkins serving as stay-at-home dad
The COVID-19 pandemic has forced everyone to change their daily routine. Count Bills offensive tackle Dion Dawkins among them.
Spending his offseason in Florida, Dawkins took time to share his new daily offseason existence in a piece he wrote for ‘The Players Tribune.’ After becoming a father for the first time late last season, Dawkins explained how he's serving as a 'stay-at-home' dad.
I start my days off, first thing, with my daughter. I have two kids in the house — my daughter, who's four months old, and my five-year-old nephew, Wayne. My daughter wakes up, she eats, she gets changed, she plays, does her tummy time, then she eats again, and then she sleeps. That's a full day for her. After I take care of her in the morning, I take care of my nephew. I make sure he showers, eats, and all of that good stuff. It's like, Wow, I just went from totally being a full-time, professional athlete to a full-time, professional dad.
Dawkins also covered how he's doing what he can to maintain his fitness level despite the closing of non-essential businesses like his local gym.
I ride my bike around the neighborhood. I do some push-ups, do some sit-ups.
In this time of staying at home, Dawkins also plans to teach himself to fish by making use of a pond in his backyard.
3. 'No better fit' for Dean Marlowe than the Bills
It was a no brainer type decision for Bills safety Dean Marlowe this offseason as he was set to become a free agent. After seeing his most extensive work on defense in his career for Buffalo in 2019 season, Marlowe wanted to re-up with the Bills.
"In 2019 we had an awesome year finishing 10-6 and I was able to contribute in any way, shape or form they needed me," Marlowe said in an appearance on 'One Bills Live.' "After the Houston game we had a couple of conversations about me wanting to come back and me being a part of this culture."
Marlowe officially re-signed with the club, agreeing on a one-year contract last week.
"My agent and the Bills had negotiation talks in the last couple of months," he said. "There is no other better fit for me and knowing McDermott has been part of my entire career, it's been the best fit for me and my family. Just the culture and the organization, everything has just been a blessing for us."
McDermott has coached Marlowe from the time he was signed as an undrafted rookie with the Carolina Panthers where McDermott served as defensive coordinator. The Bills head coach subsequently brought Marlowe to Buffalo in 2017.
But this past season was the most work Marlowe saw on defense as he filled a role in the team's 'big nickel' package.
"It went great because that was a position that I had played in college," said Marlowe. "When Taron (Johnson) went down it was actually an opportunity for me to show what I could do not just at safety but what I can do in the slot. It was valuable for me to show my ability to do more than just play safety in the secondary."