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Q&A: Buffalo Bills coaching hires, Carolina Panthers bias, stadium survey

Lots of great questions in this week’s episode!

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The Buffalo Bills off-season is in full swing with two coaching hires this week. But still, questions abound around the team and we do our best to answer them.

In this week’s episode, we answer questions about the supposed bias of Buffalo Bills head coach Sean McDermott, who seems to hire and add a lot of former Carolina Panthers. We also tackle his newest hires on special teams and the o-line, discuss some possible free agent splashes Buffalo could make, and address the stadium survey sent out by the team this week.

As always, you can call us at 716-508-0405 to leave your question about the Bills. That line is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, so call any time! You can tweet us @RumblingsQandA, email us at BuffaloRumblings@SBNation.com, or leave a comment in the comments section below.

Featured Question Of The Week

“Why are the Bills always going after former Panthers?”

The Bills reportedly hired former Carolina Panthers assistant special teams coach Heath Farwell on Tuesday, drudging up Bills fans making the same jokes about Buffalo going after former Panthers. The question is certainly valid, but after a little investigating, it’s overblown.

Farwell never coached with McDermott in Carolina. He was hired after McDermott came to Buffalo.

That certainly doesn’t mean that McDermott didn’t speak with Chase Blackburn, who was a player and coach while McDermott was in Carolina. It’s almost a certainty that he did. But does that matter?

When you’re doing work on your home, do you go out and hire someone based on a general reputation or do you ask trusted family and friends who they might recommend? A lot of times those are the same people, but leaning on folks you know is pretty common.

The Bills certainly have their fair share of former Panthers, but I don’t think it’s to the detriment of the team. After a sub-par season, Buffalo let Mike Tolbert leave in free agency. They cut Kelvin Benjamin. They didn’t re-sign Leonard Johnson. They cut Kaelin Clay. The list of former Bills who are also former Panthers is pretty high, so while they might have an “in,” that doesn’t mean they have carte blanche. They still have to perform once they get here in order to stay.

Look no further than offensive line coach Juan Castillo. He’s known and worked with McDermott for nearly 20 years. He was fired a couple days after the season because his squad under-performed in the eyes of the head coach.

Rick Dennison had no experience with McDermott before. It’s not like it’s a prerequisite for it to be a good or bad hire. New o-line coach Bobby Johnson has no direct ties to McDermott or offensive coordinator Brian Daboll. Does that make him a better or worse coach? No.

It’s not something I’m worried about and will continue to be down my list of concerns if the team goes and signs Devin Funchess or any other former Panthers this off-season.


Helpful links

Once again, you can call and leave your question at 716-508-0405 any time day or night, tweet us @RumblingsQandA, email us at BuffaloRumblings@SBNation.com, or leave a comment in the comments section below. Shows drop on Wednesday every week during the offseason.

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