With the hiring of Sean McDermott, cutting Tyrod Taylor is a move that makes a lot of sense for the Buffalo Bills heading into 2017.
As Sean McDermott was announced as the head coach of the Buffalo Bills on Wednesday afternoon, the talk of the town was all about defense. Rightfully so, McDermott has a background in that category, having worked as a defensive assistant, linebacker coach, and most recently as a defensive coordinator.
What must not be overlooked with the introduction of McDermott, however, is that the quarterback situation is far from solved for the Bills. While one thing must come before that — the decision on who will be the team’s offensive coordinator moving forward — the Bills have to decide what to do with Tyrod Taylor.
The move that makes the most sense for the Bills right now, regardless of who the team decides to go with as an offensive coordinator, is cutting the starter of the past two years, Tyrod Taylor.
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Taylor is a lovable athlete who has a lot of passion for the game and has been good for Buffalo. He hasn’t been afraid to take some really big hits, and has exceeded expectations for the most part, throwing 37 touchdowns over the last two seasons and over 6000 yards.
ESPN already reported that Bills general manager Doug Whaley isn’t attached to Taylor, and may be looking to move him, so there is signs already that Taylor is on his way out. ESPN’s Mike Rodak also wrote a nice column on how the quarterback decision should frame McDermott’s early expectations with the team.
Taylor’s near-$30 million dollar contract gives the Bills a serious chunk of change to work with going into the offseason if they choose to release Taylor.
One of the biggest issues for the Buffalo Bills over the last decade and some change has been a lack of personnel match-up in combination with a lack of continuity, and a lot of overlapping pieces from year to year in the personnel.
Those overlapping pieces lead to players that don’t necessarily fit with the coaching style, and therefore, are not optimized to the roster as well as other players could be.
Since the year 2000, the Bills have had eight head coaches, and on a few occasions, the coaches coming into their new jobs have kept working with quarterbacks that were layover quarterbacks from the season before with the Bills. Those overlapping pieces didn’t work all that well in their first seasons underneath the new coaches.
While at the time keeping those guys on the roster despite the coaching change may have seemed smart, it could have been better to bring in new guys as the tone switched in the locker room as it does with any head coaching change.
With McDermott comes a giant change of pace for the organization. He has been called the anti-Rex Ryan, as he’s a player-friendly coach that knows how to motivate and get a ton out of his players. While he may very well be able to hire an offensive coordinator that can work with Taylor, it might just be smarter to clean house, work with some longevity, and have some patience with the quarterback situation. After all, getting Taylor’s contract off of the books allows the Bills to work with some cash to find a quarterback that works well in whatever style offense the Bills move forward with.
The Bills could count on finding a new starting quarterback this offseason — whether that be in the draft of free agency — and working extensively with him underneath the new staff. The growth of that quarterback as the team starter will be in line with the coaching staff’s growth with the Bills.
The issues in Buffalo have been around for a while, and the answer may just be having some patience and allowing the coaching staff and quarterback to grow together. Success doesn’t just happen overnight. With no quarterback being a leading passer in Buffalo for more than four years over the last decade, and no coach being with the team for longer than two seasons, it might just be time for a fresh start in both areas.