As the Bills put a wrap on their mandatory minicamp Thursday and their spring practices head coach Doug Marrone was generally pleased with the progress his team has made. The coaching staff gave the players a lot of material to digest and implement on the practice field. On the whole Marrone and his assistants felt they absorbed and executed the new schemes relatively well.
“I’m very pleased with the amount of work that we got done,” Marrone said. “We’ve reached our goal as far as what we wanted to get in. We’ve reached our goal as far as teaching the players what our tempo is, how we want to practice. They’ve responded in a professional way, which is greatly appreciated by myself and the staff. We’re excited. That’s how it should be.”
The players have bought into the plan and approach Marrone and his staff have taken, and the veterans believe it’s led to the best camaraderie on the roster that they can remember.
“The one thing that has remained the same and consistent is that energy level. The tempo of everything,” Scott told Buffalobills.com. “I don’t like to get too excited because it’s still early. But there’s just this different feeling in the air this year. Guys are here, the attendance rate is off the charts this year. We’re just really excited and as we go into this next phase.”
At this point the team has yet to reach the refinement stage of what they’ve installed. That will take place at training camp according to Marrone.
“We’re looking to make sure that we’re not making mistakes and we’re putting the players in the best situation. I think that’s the first thing,” he said. “All three systems do that. We’re looking to see where we can put our players so they can be most successful. We went in thinking about the personnel and we went in thinking about putting things in that fit. Now it’s a library of offense, defense and special teams. I think we still keep that same type of foundation as we go through training camp.”
Offense bounces back
After a couple of days where the defense was making plays just about each and every series, the offense had some answers on Thursday. During red zone work
Manuel also threw a nice pass between a pair of defenders to fellow rookie
“We’re building it right now. Chemistry is being built now,” he said. “The way we’re running our offense right now it’s so fast and we’re subbing in and out so quick I think it’s probably going to take a little bit longer to get this chemistry down, but by the middle of training camp or the end of training camp we’ll be good.”
Tight end touchdowns
Of the four touchdowns thrown by Bills quarterbacks Thursday, three of them went to tight ends.
Although it’s widely expected that
Caussin and Gragg have been the top two tight ends in the rotation with Chandler still not doing team work and
Duke on the move
“I did a lot. I played corner, nickel, safety, and dime and everything,” Williams told Buffalobills.com. “It was a lot of mixed packages, similar to here. I have the ability to play a lot of parts in this defense, especially at defensive back. Coach just wanted to try me out at corner and see how I looked.”
Williams’ best play was when he knocked a ball away from the hands of
Left guard update
Through the three-day minicamp it was essentially a two-man competition at left guard.
“I’m just trying to get better every day and we’ll see where it plays out at the end of camp,” said Brown.
“I’ve got a lot of things to work on. I’ll just play it one play at a time.”
Lindell accurate, Hopkins has leg
The competition for the kicking job is certainly not the most intriguing heading into Bills training camp, but Lindell will be facing the stiffest competition he’s had during his time in a Buffalo uniform in sixth-round pick
In practice Thursday they each had an opportunity to kick field goals from distances ranging from 34 to 51 yards. Lindell was a perfect 7-for-7 on his attempts with a long of 49 yards. Hopkins was 5-for-7 on his kicks. He missed from 37 yards to the left and from 50 yards to the right.
Through all the spring practices Lindell has been the more accurate kicker. Where Hopkins has an edge is on kickoffs where his leg is simply stronger.
Lindell knows despite a solid showing on field goals that the competition has just begun.
“It’s certainly the first step,” Lindell told Buffalobills.com. “It’s going to continue in, well, we take a break, so, the evaluation period goes away for a few weeks, but you still have to get ready for phase two.”
The Bills are now off for six weeks before they must report to training camp on July 28th. The first practice is scheduled for the night of the 28th.
“We’re leaving here knowing that we have a lot of hard work ahead of us, but it’s also hard work that we’re looking forward to,” Marrone said.
Buffalobills.com has the complete training camp schedule.