Imagine that you have just won the lottery, and all of a sudden you have a couple million dollars just sitting in your bank account.
After a couple of months you become bored and decide you want to go into business for yourself. I’m not going to guess what type of business you want invest in, because, let’s face it. We all have our own dreams of what we would like to do to make ourselves happy and still provide for our family while we work hard at our new venture.
A couple of years have gone by, and your business is at a standstill. Your business has been doing okay, by providing for you and your family. But you were hoping that it would have been growing, providing even more than you could have hoped for.
Now imagine you’re Terry Pegula.
Terry and his wife Kim became the new owners of the Buffalo Bills on October 10, 2014. And Bills fans from all walks of life were immediately asking when change was going to happen. After 15 years without a playoff season, you kind of had to expect it.
As far as the 2014 season goes, no one thinking logically, can blame the Pegula’s for what happened. Speaking factually, the draft was done and gone long ago. UDFA and veteran FA, done. Final roster, done. In fact, when the Pegula’s became owners, one third of the season was completed.
For the rest of the 2014 season, I look at it this way. Just as you would have done in your new business, they were finding their way. At the end of that season, it seems to have become somewhat of a circus.
Head Coach Doug Marrone bails out of the final year of his contract and bails out of Buffalo.
Enter Rex Ryan. I don’t think I need to really say much on this subject. Just replay all his press conferences. You’ll get the picture.
Now, it’s 2017. And I think the Pegula’s have finally, for the first time, have experienced what a truly good football mind is really like. Yes, I’m talking about the interview and hire of Sean McDermott.
Unlike Ryan, whose total defenses have fluctuated all over the place, McDermott’s defenses have consistently been in the top 10. Again, in fact, even with the Carolina Panthers going from the Super bowl in 2015 to last place in the NFC South in 2016, McDermott was the only Defensive Coordinator in the NFL to have 4 consecutive years with a total defense ranked in the top 10.
I have always been hopeful, but didn’t have much hope for the Buffalo Bills in almost 20 years (I am 14 months older than the organization). But with this year, with the hire of McDermott, his coordinators and their assistants, I am, with a little reserve, hopeful again.
Being realistic, I’m not expecting the playoffs in his first year as Head Coach. There will be an adjustment period learning the new system and learning a completely new playbook. But next year, my expectations will be quite high.
But for now, as the Pegula’s go, it’s their 3rd full season as owners of the team. They seem to be finally on their way to understanding the football way of life. And I am expecting more changes within the organization as the year moves on.
I’ll give Terry and Kim another year or two before I start to declare that my patience is wearing thin. Until then, I’ll hold on to whatever virtue I have.
Editor’s babble: Thanks again to Chuck for contributing to our blog. You can follow Chuck on Twitter @chuck_abshagen.