The Bills went two and a half weeks with no news about the holes that departed coaches left on the coaching staff. Now, after one press conference, we have a wealth of news to discuss. I thought I'd hit on all of them in one post, just for organizational purposes. Here's everything that went down today:
Obviously, the biggest news was the promotion of Turk Schonert to be the team's offensive coordinator. He was previously the Bills' quarterbacks coach. Schonert has already made it clear that he plans to upgrade the passing attack first, while throwing to Marshawn Lynch more as well. That last part is the best news I've heard in regards to his promotion. We have a discussion about this promotion up already (a heated one at that); if you'd like to discuss Schonert further, do it here.
It was touched on in the Schonert thread, but deserves more mention: Alex Van Pelt has also been promoted to QB coach, replacing Schonert. Honestly, I'm really excited about this move - I've always felt that Van Pelt's intelligence was underrated as a player, and he's quickly worked his way into a pretty prominent coaching position in the NFL. His familiarity with Buffalo's current quarterbacks will make his transition to a more prominent role much smoother, as well.
The third offensive promotion of the day came in the form of Sean Kugler's promotion to offensive line coach. The former assistant to Jim McNally was responsible for the pass protection aspect of Buffalo's line last season - and the fact that the Bills surrendered only 26 sacks speaks volumes about his coaching ability. His transition, like Van Pelt's, will be a smooth one after acquiring a year on the job in Buffalo.
Yes - a fourth coach was promoted as well. Running backs coach Eric Studesville - who has worked for Dick Jauron in both Chicago and Buffalo, and has survived two coaching tenures in Buffalo - has received the additional responsibility of run game coordinator. With Schonert announcing that all of the terminology from last year's running game will be carried over to the new offense, I like this move - it allows Schonert to focus on the weaker aspect of Buffalo's offense while leaving the run game in capable hands. Studesville won't be calling run plays or anything of that nature, but it lessens Schonert's workload enough to make his transition to a new role that much easier.
This can probably be filed under the "Well, yeah..." category, but it's worth making official anyways: Trent Edwards is the Bills' 2008 starting quarterback.
After all of that, Jauron also made it known that he's not done hiring, either. The head coach plans on adding an assistant offensive line coach as well as quality control coaches on both offense and defense.