So our Bills started up their strength and conditioning workouts today and per Coach Marrone about 90% of the players are present. Rather than giving that dork Rodak page views, I'll just highlight what he posted today:
- EJ has been a full participant today and he says that he feels great/ has no limitations
- Stevie showed up for a change
- Spikes is there and participating as well
- Scott Chandler, Kiko, and Gilmore didn't sound to be full participants; but who cares its way early
- All players that aren't there, aren't there because of life, not choice.
That's all from Rodak, the master of turning nothing into 400 words, but just those two little blogs made me extremely happy on a boring Tuesday afternoon. Not that I remember reports of this nature from years past, 90% participation seems high for day 1 of strength and conditioning under past coaching staffs. To me, this all comes from the attitude of the Dougs: we only want you if you want to be here and you're gonna put in the work. Even though this isn't a huge indicator, it still feels pretty big to me. It seems as though the players are of the mindset that absence at any team activities will be noted and without a good reason will be noted negatively (cough Dareus cough Spikes cough Johnson cough cough cough).
What I like most about all of this is Stevie's presence. Here's hoping that something got through to him whether it be the acquisition of Williams, the interest the Bills have shown in drafting another receiving option, a flight with Andre Reed, a talk with Doug Marrone -- whatever. Perhaps the lightbulb finally went off in his head that lifting weights and playing basketball isn't the workout program of a veteran wide receiver that wants to be considered in the upper echelon. Same thing with Spikes: often at odds with the Pats coaching staff and skipped voluntaries last year, here from the get go (even though I'm pretty sure everything he's doing is a "screw you Patriots" move more than anything else).
The players are taking Coach Marrone seriously, and I'm seriously ready for things to get fully underway!
Viva la Mafia!