Sean McDermott doesn't want to be 'one-sided' coach


The Buffalo Bills are starting over.

The franchise has exorcised the Brothers Ryan and general manager Doug Whaley since the end of last season and in their stead hired two former Carolina Panthers honchos: coach Sean McDermott and GM Brandon Beane. With the new duo has come a new attitude, quieter public personas and a radically different approach to coaching and leading a team.

"You can't just be a one-sided head coach and be effective," McDermott told Vic Carucci of the Buffalo News. "I want my influence to be felt in all three phases. Certainly, the defense comes naturally for me, but that said, I've had ideas for what I want the offense and special teams to look like as well.

"I think the tendency for some is when you get into the special-teams periods and things like that to just, 'Hey, that's an off period for coaches sometimes.' And special teams is where you win games. You're going to win or lose sometimes two or three games a year on special teams or situational football."

McDermott's comments suggest his coaching style will be the antithesis to whatever former skipper Rex Ryan's was. Though both were defensive coordinators, Ryan was notably more focused -- for better or worse, and more often for worse -- on his defenses in two stints as a head coach with the Jets and Bills. Ryan's hands-on attempts at running his offenses rarely ended well (see: Tim Tebow); though it should be noted that Ryan's support for Tyrod Taylor last season was far more justified than the front office's confounding infatuation with EJ Manuel.

Using training camp strategies passed down from predecessors Andy Reid and Ron Rivera, McDermott told Carucci that one of his main objectives this summer will be to facilitate team bonding, which means eliminating video games from the locker room. It's a change that could unnerve some veteran players -- Richie Incognito spoke glowingly of his new coach's ideology last week on Total Access -- but one that is indelibly McDermott's.

"My hand will be on the back of this team at all times," McDermott added. "Sometimes that means it's like this [pushing] and sometimes that means it's just right here [holding it still] and the guys know, even though the pressure may not be as hard, when they look, yeah, I'm right here from a support standpoint.

"There's other times when it's going to be, 'Hey, let's go,' because I think that's what a leader does."