After spending six years as the defensive coordinator for the Carolina Panthers, Sean McDermott will become the head coach of the Buffalo Bills after they discarded Rex Ryan at the end of the regular season. It seemed like offensive coordinator and interim coach Anthony Lynn was the frontrunner for the job, but clearly the Bills had something else in mind for the 20th coach in franchise history.
IT’S OFFICIAL. We’ve agreed with Sean McDermott to become head coach of the Buffalo Bills!
— Buffalo Bills (@buffalobills) January 11, 2017
Buffalo Bills Name Sean McDermott Head Coach
The 42-year-old coach reportedly also interviewed with the Chargers and the 49ers during the off season.
McDermott, who mentored under Jimmy Johnson, is known for his tough demeanor and strong discipline, something that will be a welcome change to many of the Bills players, who complained of a lack of discipline.
It’s also good news for the defense. McDermott runs a base 4-3 system, and tends to be a flexible play-caller, allowing the players to help create the system rather than the other way around.
The Bills have a ton of defensive talent, but the team as a whole underperformed this year, The line includes some pretty strong players, Kyle Williams, Marcell Dareus and Shaq Lawson, to name a few. However, it doesn’t necessarily compare with a Panthers lineup that included Kony Ealy, Kawann Short, Star Lotulelei, Vernon Butler and Charles Johnson.
While his first job will be to tap into the raw talent of these players, probably with the help of Al Holcomb, Panthers linebacker coach, as his defensive coordinator, the real tough job at Buffalo will be revamping the offense.
McDermott will have to find an offensive coordinator who can turn a talented but disorganized set of players into an offense that can compete with the likes of the Miami Dolphins and the always sharp New England Patriots in the AFC East. If they want to be competitive, they’re going to have to be able to move the ball and get tougher in the red zone.