Buffalo Bills head coach Sean McDermott sees a more focused Josh Allen, who understands their Super Bowl window can only be open for so long.
Ever since their AFC Championship Game loss to the Kansas City Chiefs in the 2020 season, the Buffalo Bills entered each league year looking to get past that round and reach the Super Bowl for the first time since the 1993 season.
Instead, they lost in the Divisional Round in each of the last two years. And each year, the AFC is only getting tougher (i.e. Aaron Rodgers joining the New York Jets, etc.).
When speaking with the media on Tuesday, Bills head coach Sean McDermott expressed his belief that he has seen a different quarterback in Josh Allen. Specifically, a more focused Allen.
“I’ve seen a different Josh this offseason, not that it was bad before, but he’s got a new sense of focus, I would say, and determination, which is good,” said McDermott, h/t NFL.com.
Bills: Sean McDermott sees a different Josh Allen entering the 2023 season
During his meeting with reporters, Allen said he knows he can play better, even though the offense has thrived as long as he was the starting quarterback. But, Allen said it hasn’t led to success in the playoffs.
“I want to give everything that I have for as long as I play. I’m not saying that I haven’t done that in the past, but there’s always new ways that I can find to get better, and not being complacent with what I’m doing on the field, understanding that there’s a lot of plays that we left out there. And you know, statistically, you look at it, we were top three, four [in] offense in the league last year, and it wasn’t good enough. So, just losing the playoffs isn’t fun, you know?”
Last year, there was a change for Allen in Buffalo. Offensive coordinator Brian Daboll was hired to be the head coach of the New York Giants, and quarterbacks coach Ken Dorsey was promoted. In the middle of the season, Allen suffered an elbow injury during the team’s Week 9 loss to the Jets, but he played through it for the remainder of the year.
In 16 regular season games, Allen threw for 4,283 yards, 35 touchdowns, and 14 interceptions, while completing 63.3 percent of his passes.
Come playoff time, the Bills got past, albeit barely, the rival Miami Dolphins, despite them starting third-string quarterback Skylar Thompson. Allen completed 23-of-39 pass attempts for 352 yards and three touchdowns while throwing two interceptions. In the Divisional Round, the Bills were run out at home by Joe Burrow and the Bengals, losing 27-10. Allen threw 25 completions for 264 yards and one interception in 42 pass attempts.
The Bills did bring in a huge addition to the passing game in rookie tight end Dalton Kincaid, who can be another reliable downfield target for Allen. But can Allen will this team to a Super Bowl? We’ll find out by the end of the season.