Syracuse coach Doug Marrone agreed to terms Sunday morning to become the Buffalo Bills' head coach, two sources with knowledge of the process told NFL.com's Ian Rapoport. The team made the deal official Monday morning. The move directly speaks to the organization's offensive issues.
"I think that's a great hire," NFL Network analyst Brian Billick said Sunday on "First on the Field." "He brings that pedigree that's kind of popular now, a substantial pro background with that mix of college."
Marrone's most significant NFL experience was three years as the New Orleans Saints' offensive coordinator from 2006 to 2008. He was the first offensive coordinator hired by Sean Payton when he and Drew Brees went to New Orleans. The Saints made the playoffs in 2006 for the first time since 2000. They posted the No. 1 total offense twice and a top-five scoring offense twice in those three years.
Marrone also coached the New York Jets' offensive line from 2002 to 2005 and went 25-25 in four years as the coach at Syracuse.
The Bills have been a mess offensively, as quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick has shown flashes but has been wildly inconsistent. The Bills have been a top-20 scoring offense only once since 2004. Addressing the quarterback situation and smartly using running back C.J. Spiller will be Marrone's first two tasks.
A 6-10 record proves the Bills certainly had their defensive woes, but AFC East teams need a legit offense to compete with the New England Patriots.