ORCHARD PARK, NY – Almost a year ago to the date Rex Ryan was infamously crowning the Bills “winners of the offseason” as the team wrapped up mandatory minicamp.
“Obviously a lot of things have to happen, and we’re a month or so away, but I told our players today to ‘win July,” Ryan declared last June. “We won the offseason. I would challenge any team. I think we’ve won the offseason.”
One year later – with Ryan long gone following his firing in December – Sean McDermott continues to distance himself from the his boisturous predecessor.
“I don’t know if we won the offseason, I’m not into that. I’m into the process,” McDermott stated ahead of the third and final day of minicamp. “I’m into where we are in our process and focused intently and only on that.”
Since the day McDermott was hired back in January, it’s become abundantly clear that what the Bills have in a head coach is the polar opposite of the man who came before him. In 2015, Ryan’s introductory press conference came with empty promises of making the playoffs, while McDermott emphasized earning the right to win and making winning a culture here in Buffalo.
Ryan was often refered to as a “players coach” for letting his guys be themselves on and off the field, a philosophy that earned him appreciation from his players, but fostered an undiciplined locker room culture where players didn’t holding themsevles accountable.
That’s the exact culture McDermott is working to avoid.
“Well it’s an important part of our process,” McDermott said. “We discussed it this morning. We’re going to discuss it again before we leave town. It’s important that we, as you’ve heard me say before, we win off the field first. That’s how you set yourself up to win on the field and that we handle this time off the field with class number one. Then we put in the work to earn the right to win as a football team, myself included.”
McDermott’s “process” certainly isn’t as flashy as the man who he succeeded, and making headlines is not his end game. Winning is.
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