1. Cole Beasley: They really care about winning here
A “winning culture” is something that Sean McDermott and Brandon Beane have been trying to build in Buffalo since taking the reins of the team in the 2017 offseason.
According to the recently-signed Cole Beasley, their vision is starting to take shape.
The slot receiver, who is coming off a 2018 campaign in which he reeled in 65 passes for 672 yards, feels as though the team’s aggressiveness in free agency is a testament to the front office’s desire for success.
“Shows that they really care about winning here,” Beasley said. “They’re trying to make the things happen that they need to, to move forward. I’m just happy to be a part of that. I just want to do my part and do whatever I can to help us take that step forward.”
Beasley, who spent the first seven years of his career in Dallas, is regarded as one of the league’s best slot wideouts. In Buffalo, the 29-year-old will likely serve as a safety valve for the young Josh Allen.
He couldn’t be more excited.
“That’s really the main reason why I came here,” Beasley said. “Everybody makes a big deal about money, I mean, money’s important, but really I just wanted opportunities. I felt like I could do more, and I wanted to be in that position. I feel like this is the place for that.”
2. John Brown: Josh Allen is a great quarterback
In a flood of congratulatory texts, it was a phone call that caught John Brown’s attention.
Just moments after the speedy wideout agreed to terms on a three-year deal with the Bills, he received a phone call from Buffalo quarterback Josh Allen. For Brown, the conversation only reaffirmed his decision.
“Once I made the decision, Josh Allen was the first person to call me from the organization,” Brown said. “He was just amped up about it. I was glad to hear from him. [With] him being a young quarterback, you don’t see most young guys do that, that are trying to take over a team.”
Brown, a boundary wideout who has caught 215 passes for 3,230 yards throughout his five-year career, nearly signed with the Bills last offseason. Then looking for an opportunity to play with an established quarterback, Brown instead opted to sign with the Joe Flacco-led Baltimore Ravens.
Now confident in Buffalo’s situation at the quarterback position, Brown is excited to get to work.
“Last year, [I signed] with the Ravens, I didn’t know what the quarterback situation would be here,” Brown said. “Now that I see they have a great quarterback, we can do a lot of things together.
“I know that [Allen’s] accurate. He can run the ball. He leaps over a lot of guys. I’m just excited to work with him.”
3. The former NBA MVP that Mitch Morse models himself after
Though Mitch Morse is widely looked at as one of the better centers in the NFL, it is a center from a different sport that the 27-year-old models himself after.
Morse, who grew up just a few hours outside of San Antonio, is a fan of the NBA’s Spurs. Growing up as a supporter of the silver and black, Morse idolized Tim Duncan, a two-time NBA MVP who led the Spurs to five NBA titles throughout his 19-year career.
Now a professional athlete himself, Morse attempts to carry himself in a fashion similar to Duncan.
“I was a huge Tim Duncan fan,” Morse said.” [Manu] Ginobili, all of those guys. I just liked the way they played basketball. People say it was boring, but it was good basketball. I’m from Austin, San Antonio’s right down the way. We were really proud of our San Antonio Spurs.
“I just liked the way Duncan played. I liked the way he carried himself as a professional, and it’s something that I like to try to carry with myself, as well. Just kind of a silent professional, do you work and help the team win.”
4. Tyler Kroft gives an outside perspective on drought-ending game
Though Tyler Kroft did not officially sign with the Bills until this week, he’s been a fan favorite in Buffalo for quite some time.
The former Cincinnati tight end reeled in two touchdown passes in the Bengals’ Week 17 win over the Baltimore Ravens in 2017. Cincinnati’s victory knocked Baltimore out of playoff contention and sent Buffalo to the postseason for the first time in 17 years.
Kroft vividly remembers the fallout following the game.
“I’ve seen the video of everyone watching in the locker room,” Kroft said. “Obviously, I didn’t even play for the team, but just being a competitor, being a player, seeing all of those grown men get to their ultimate goal, which is to make the playoffs. I got chills looking at it, I got chills watching it. That’s what football’s about.”
Now a member of the Bills’ roster, Kroft is excited to play in front of the passionate Buffalo fanbase.
“The fanbase is awesome,” Kroft said. “Everyone knows that Bills Mafia has got a reputation for itself. I grew up in the northeast, it hasn’t been much of a culture shock. I’ve gotten to see some of the area, I haven’t gotten to see too much of the town yet. From what I’ve seen, everything looks great, looks exactly like where we want to be.”
5. Andre Roberts eager to make his former team pay
The Bills added to their already impressive offseason haul on Thursday afternoon, inking All-Pro kick returner Andre Roberts to a two-year deal.
Roberts, who picked up 1,174 yards on kick returns last season, took Buffalo’s division into consideration when deciding to sign with the team. A former Jet, playing against New York twice per season is something that Roberts is looking forward to.
“Being able to play the Jets twice a year,” Roberts said. “Coming from there, I know all about there, what they’re about. Being able to go against my old team is always going to be fun.”
“Any guy that was an All-Pro, and their team doesn’t really want to sign them back, I think would be surprised. It is what it is . . . The way they kind of handled it was a little shady. I’m a Buffalo Bill know and I’m enjoying being here.”
Click through to see photos of Buffalo's 2019 free agents in Bills gear on their first day at One Bills Drive.