The important thing about a plan is to remember to have one. It’s probably unwise to choose that sort of direction on the drive to work. Other than that, I don’t care. Trust people to do their jobs. I mean, I’d like the Buffalo Bills to use ones that result in touchdowns or turnovers every play. Do they exist?
Also, can you pick winning scratch-off lottery tickets for me?
I promise to cheer for good results no matter the pattern. Just tell players to go wherever you think they’ll be effective. Sure, that means a lack of oversight on outsiders’ part. But sports are already about having faith in something we don’t control.
Do whatever works. That’s my favorite football alignment. Let the coaching staff debate it more fiercely than we do. After all, they are paid for it. Fans should get checks for the time they put in, but the thought of those in power extending a playoff streak will have to serve as compensation.
It’s fine to have a preference. But be willing to work with what’s available. I like the Seinfeld with the Frogger more than the ones with that jerk Jack Klompus, but I’ll watch either if they’re on TBS.
Take the new style of pushing enemies out of the way. Switching blocking will hopefully clear space in a manner that was too infrequent last year. There will be no more zone schemes in case anyone is tired of conceptually blocking territory. Simply maul whoever’s in front of you to please fans and the guy with the ball alike.
Who gets less homework? The whole class gets a field trip if the work gets done, so nobody better moan. Buffalo’s new concept is simple for the lineman while leaving the rusher to make a directional decision. Does that sound cool with the players? Well, they don’t get to decide, so don’t bother tallying a vote. No matter respective locker room opinions, the philosophy will ideally maximize this particular roster’s skills. You don’t hire Chuck Yeager to be a mechanic.
Employees beg to be used properly. It’s difficult to overstate what a new coordinator means for someone looking for a career renaissance like John Miller. He could use a break as much as fans would like to see it happen.
Who can blame Miller for struggling after being shoved into a new job? The guard was drafted by an earlier regime to play in a certain manner. Then, the club helpfully changed systems, leaving him as out of place as Howard Stern at a country station. The jock could shock us with a return to form.
Even those who disagree with the plan can cheer if it works. There are football followers who are adherents of zone blocking, which is an insane level of dedication routinely accepted as normal in these parts. Buffalo just needs to find what works for their guys. Dunkin’ Donuts may be fine for other cities, but this is Tim Horton’s town.
Everyone wins at the same time. Benefiting individuals also helps the team. Management added players who aren’t merely skilled but useful to this particular outfit. Not signing a monolithic nose tackle when you need slippery intruders is a sign that everyone’s on the same page. A European voltage adapter isn’t going to help with close shaves.
The staff should use as many linebackers as they please, although 15 is probably too many. I personally tend to think a 4-3 gets the needed bulk up front instead of making a de facto end go through the ruse of pretending he’s a linebacker. But they can do whatever. I’m still glad the Bills did what I told them to, although it may not be thanks to me calling for it. Tremaine Edmunds is already as good as two middling linebackers in my dreams.
I’ll trust coordinators. That hasn’t always worked out in Buffalo. But they still haven’t accepted my application despite countless college hours studying Madden plays in lieu of class notes. Besides, the Bills finally seem to be hiring people who have not only seen American football games before but also have experience telling players to head somewhere useful.
Fans are certainly free to think a particular technique is most suitable. There have been times when the franchise should’ve taken our advice. Some strategies they’ve employed over the years have been like reimagining Cheers as a drama. It wouldn’t work without a laugh track, as it’d suddenly be about pathetic drunks. Bills fans who sat through, say, the alleged defensive stands in 2002 know some coordinators never deserved the title.
We only think we know what should have been done out of concern. Captain Hindsight is the ultimate sports fan. Yet explaining to pros what they should do differently is just our way of urging the pros to avoid counterproductive concepts.
The Bills have seen more talent wasted than Badfinger. But management now seems to be working with coaches instead of treating the relationship like a competition that nobody wins.
This year’s edition strives to obtain what’s so rarely been earned: fans’ trust. Line up your charges wherever you’d like, and know we’ll applaud if it works.
Editor’s babble: Thanks to Anthony Bialy for helping us get through the dead season with a few chuckles. You can find Anthony on Twitter @AnthonyBialy.