Offseason workouts have begun at One Bills Drive. Plenty of players were on hand including quarterback EJ Manuel. Manuel is entering his second season with the team and has now experienced a full NFL offseason. During that time he rehabbed his knee and worked with QB trainer Steve Calhoun on improving his foot work and his mechanics. Manuel also led private workouts with a handful of his teammates in both California and Florida.
“It was all Bills stuff. Coach Hackett would have been proud. We were running practices per say. We got a lot of work done and the biggest thing is that this is our offense. Coach Hackett is our coach but he is not out there making plays. It’s owning up to us as the players to be out there making changes at the line and stuff like that. We need that kind of rapport with each other to do that stuff second nature.”
Manuel also discussed the new offensive coaches on the staff including QB coach Todd Downing. He is hoping that Downing can push him into a 5,000 yard passer.
Jerry Hughes visited the studio to discuss his breakout season where he racked up 10 sacks and his anticipation of the new defensive scheme under coordinator Jim Schwartz. Hughes believes getting things going early with the offseason workouts will be beneficial.
“It just helps us out to get our brain back active. Coming back to a new scheme, we have to get the ball rolling so that way we can work things out so by the time we’re actually on the field come training camp we are able to move as one cohesive unit.”
Hughes also touched on how his hybrid position will allow him to get after the quarterback no matter where he’s lined up.
“I am pretty excited about rushing the passer. I know we’ll get an opportunity to do that, so it will be fun.”
The Bills also hosted 3 pre-draft visits on Tuesday including Georgia Southern’s Jerick McKinnon. The hybrid quarterback/running back is expected to be a mid-round draft pick. The team’s color analyst Terry Harvin called-in to discuss the prospect. McKinnon is smaller in stature but has the strength among the draft’s best.
“His strong point is certainly his speed, but also is his strength. Three out of four years he won our Iron Works Award, which is our top strength and conditioning in the weight room. For a quarterback to win that award is pretty impressive. If you get a chance to see him you’ll understand why. He led all the running backs at the combine with the bench press. Thirteen of the top fifteen bench presses were offensive lineman and he was a running back and he was eighth. That tells you about his strength, it’s pretty amazing.”
You can hear more for Harvin and Tuesday’s complete John Murphy Show, below:
(Manuel – 26:00, Harvin – 41:22, Hughes – 01:05:00)
Posted in Inside the Bills