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Inside The Bills

Bills new DL coach learned from Parcells

Posted by johnmurphyshow on February 4, 2014 – 9:00 pm

The new Defensive Line Coach for the Buffalo Bills got his first taste of the NFL from one of the master motivators in the history of the game.

Pepper Johnson, named last Friday to the DL post with the Bills, was a 2nd round draft pick of the New York Giants in 1986. His first head coach–Bill Parcells.

In an appearance on The John Murphy Show Tuesday night, Pepper Johnson described his first ever team meeting with Parcells and the Giants in 1986.

“He told us all that he didn’t need any of us,” Johnson remembered. “That’s how he started it off. He said the New York Giants didn’t need any of these guys. They had made it to the playoffs–this is a train, a locomotive, and it’s steamrolling. His best advice to us was if you got enough speed and enough heart, then catch on to the caboose, because this train is moving.”

Johnson told host John Murphy Parcells first speech left a big impression on Giants rookies that year.

“You felt like any bad move you might get cut and left high and dry, and I started running,” he said.

Pepper Johnson has spent the last 14-years with the New England Patriots, as a Defensive Line and Linebacker coach. He was asked if Parcells hard-nosed, no-nonsense approach would work with today’s NFL players.

“No,” he answered. “With some guys maybe. Some guys believe in working hard until the day they drop. But some guys feel that a lot of opportunities– they deserve them, and they’re going to make it some form or fashion, whether it’s here or somewhere else, and not looking at it as a privilege, an honor to play in the NFL.”

The entire radio interview with Bills DL Coach Pepper Johnson is available here


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