The Buffalo Bills finished their mandatory minicamp and will be off for a month before they come back for training camp, but head coach Doug Marrone is hoping that they can retain the knowledge they have during the break.
Marrone addressed the Buffalo media yesterday and said that he spoke to the team about retention and why it's important.
"I’ve always had a philosophy that you never really start where you left off," Marrone said. "I’ve always said that. I talked to the players early on about retention, meaning we’re going over a lot of things and putting a lot of information in and it’s important that you can retain this stuff when we report to camp. We’re going to go ahead and reinstall the same installation that we’ve done over these days. This way they get the same installation at least three times. When you do that and they can recall the plays and what we want to do, that enables them to concentrate on the technique and the little things that can really make a difference. So when we talk about retention, that’s what we’re looking for. Being able to retain so that we can get into more of the detail of what we’re trying to accomplish."
Marrone is hoping that players take the extra steps necessary to retain what they learned in minicamp so they have an advantage once training camp begins. It's not a secret that fans and the organization have high expectations this season, and having players who are sharp both mentally and physically will help them as they prepare for it.
"We installed three segments the same way, so they get the information presented to them three times the same way, training camp being the third time they are exposed to it," Marrone said. "This means that you’d hope that when they get the information, the stuff you’ve already spent a lot of time on you can get through more quickly and get to the little things that make a big difference. If you’re still spending time on stuff you went over the first time we installed, the philosophy and what not of it, then you have to slow it down."
The month between minicamp and training camp is shorter than normal, but it's still long enough for Bills fans to be concerned about Marcell Dareus, who has had his share of issues off the field. Marrone said that he has spoken with Dareus and they agreed on the next steps he needs to take to get back on track.
"Our goal was to come back here and for him to be focused," Marrone said. "I think he did a very good job focusing on the football part, and now, when he leaves, we talked about focusing on the next step, and getting ready to come to camp."
Marrone and the Bills have plenty on their plate during this offseason. General manager Doug Whaley stated after the draft that the goal is to win, and win now. With the additions the team has made, it is now up to Marrone to get the group organized and prepared to clinch the first playoff berth for the Bills since 1999.
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