Inside The Bills

Bills ‘D’ wanted game for Schwartz

Posted by Chris Brown on October 5, 2014 – 11:18 pm

All week Bills defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz downplayed the importance of his return to Detroit where he was the head coach of the Lions for five seasons. After the victory Sunday, in which Schwartz’s defense held the Lions scoreless in the second half, and gave up just seven points in the game, his players made it clear that this game meant an awful lot to their defensive play caller.

“This game really meant a lot to him especially when we lost to them during preseason,” said Marcell Dareus. “You could see the disappointment on his face. In the meetings last night he told us he still has family here. His son is still here. He would love for his son to go to school and be happy and not let people mess with him. So it really meant more to him than just a game. So I took it and we all took it to ourselves that we were going to go out here and do the best we can for Schwartz and the team and we pulled it out.”

After the game the defensive players carried Schwartz on their shoulders across the field. DE Jerry Hughes understood why winning meant what it did to Schwartz.

“Absolutely, any time you get a chance to come back to where you started from, and we wanted to show that we were the better team,” said Hughes. “By us going out there and getting a win, it was huge.  But any time you get a win in the NFL , they’re so hard to come by, so we’re just very thankful for that.”

 


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Dareus performing admirably

Posted by Chris Brown on October 1, 2014 – 6:36 pm

His offseason wasn’t the kind that any NFL player would want to have, but coming off his best individual game this season this past Sunday, Dareus is a full month into the season and his commitment to the straight and narrow has left his head coach encouraged.

“He’s been to work. We’ve had zero issues,” said Doug Marrone of Dareus. “He’s worked hard in the weight room. He’s worked hard on the practice field. Not one issue with anything. From that standpoint I’m proud of that. He’s doing what he should do to be a pro. That’s what you should do in this league and that’s what’s expected of you.”

Dareus had four tackles, including three for loss, a sack and a quarterback hit in last week’s loss to the Texans.


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Dareus gets sack in scoring change

Posted by Chris Brown on September 25, 2014 – 11:35 am

Some may have been scratching their head at last Sunday’s game when Marcell Dareus appeared to take down Philip Rivers on the first play from scrimmage in the fourth quarter for a sack, when it was ruled a rush for two yards. A few days later the league has corrected the play awarding a sack to Dareus on the play for a one-yard loss.

Dareus corralled Rivers at the Bills’ 47 not the Bills’ 44-yard line as it was initially recorded. Nigel Bradham and Jerry Hughes were most responsible for flushing Rivers from the pocket on the play. Rivers tried to step up, but Dareus saw the San Diego QB trying to escape took off in pursuit grabbing him from behind for the takedown.

With 13:36 remaining in fourth quarter the league also ruled that the full sack on EJ Manuel credited to Chargers DL Corey Liuget should be split with LB Reggie Walker.

 


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Dareus, Meeks injured at practice

Posted by Chris Brown on August 6, 2014 – 7:56 pm

There were a couple of injuries at Wednesday’s practice, but at this point the severity of each of them is not yet known.

At head coach Doug Marrone’s post-practice press conference, Vice President of Communications Scott Berchtold stated that Marcell Dareus sustained a hamstring injury and safety Jonathan Meeks suffered a neck injury.

Their status for Friday night’s game is not known at this point.


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Dareus delayed by weather

Posted by Chris Brown on July 22, 2014 – 8:36 am

Bills DT Marcell Dareus was unable to get back to Bills camp Monday night as scheduled due to weather delays.

Dareus’ flight back to Rochester was canceled last night due to weather. Head coach Doug Marrone may provide an update on Dareus return schedule following practice this morning.


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Mario: I have faith in Marcell

Posted by Chris Brown on July 21, 2014 – 9:16 pm

Head coach Doug Marrone said he expected the excused Marcell Dareus to be back on campus at St. John Fisher Monday evening. How soon he’ll be able to pass the team’s conditioning test to be cleared for practice is yet to be determined. What is certain is his teammate Mario Williams is eager to get him back alongside him on Buffalo’s defensive line.

“Extremely anxious,” said Williams. “He’s a heck of a player. He’s just a young guy, but at the same time we hold him accountable just like anybody else. Whether you’re in here for 12 or 15 years, a coach, whatever we’re going to hold each other accountable.”

Mario said Dareus has shown he can be accountable before though he would not provide an example to the media.

When asked if he has faith that Dareus will come around and be the Pro Bowl caliber player he can be, Williams answered in the affirmative.

“I can’t speak for everybody else, but I have faith in him,” said Williams. “I can’t put words in somebody else’s mouth on the team, but I have all the faith in him.”


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Dareus excused from camp; back tonight

Posted by Chris Brown on July 21, 2014 – 5:52 pm

Bills DT Marcell Dareus has not been  cleared to practice yet being on the Non-Football Injury list, but he also has not been in attendance each of the past two days at training camp. Head coach Doug Marrone explained why on Monday.

“All the players reported to camp. At the present time I’ve excused Marcell,” said Marrone. “He’s taking care of some personal stuff, but he’ll be like everybody else on the side training getting ready to pass the physical. He’s one of the players that didn’t pass the running test.”

Marrone said Dareus is scheduled to return to camp this evening (Monday).

 


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Marrone: Dareus didn’t pass conditioning test

Posted by Chris Brown on July 20, 2014 – 5:47 pm

Bills head coach Doug Marrone confirmed that Marcell Dareus didn’t pass his conditioning test which is why he was placed on the non-football injury list.

He obviously won’t be practicing tonight.


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Mario on NFL’s Top 100 gives Bills a 1st

Posted by Chris Brown on June 25, 2014 – 10:01 pm

Tonight (Wednesday) on the NFL’s Top 100 on NFL Network, Mario Williams became the fourth Bills player to appear on the list. His appearance at #29 also marks a league first in the four-year history of the countdown.

With the addition of Mario Williams, the Bills become the first team in the four-year history of the NFL’s Top 100 Players to have three defensive linemen appear in the Top 100 Players.

Mario joins linemates Marcell Dareus (#62) and Kyle Williams (#32). Kiko Alonso (#82) was also on the list.

This is the third time that Mario Williams appears on the list, and it’s his highest ranking ever. He was on it last year and ranked #72 and in 2011 when he ranked #71.


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4th Bills player to appear on NFL’s Top 100

Posted by Chris Brown on June 25, 2014 – 12:19 pm

In the latest installment of the NFL’s Top 100 on NFL Network another Bills player will be featured tonight (Wednesday).

Tonight’s installment will count down from 30-21, and Buffalo will have their fourth player named in the countdown to this point. So far Kiko Alonso (#84), Marcell Dareus (#62) and Kyle Williams (#32) have been featured on the list.

NFL Network’s Top 100 airs Wednesday at 9 PM ET, followed by The Top 100 Players of 2014 Reactions show at 10 PM ET. Players who appear on this list are voted on solely by current NFL players.


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Marrone committed to getting Dareus on track

Posted by Chris Brown on June 3, 2014 – 3:13 pm

The two latest incidents off the field by Marcell Dareus are certainly of concern to the Bills organization. Even though Dareus will now miss the remainder of OTA practices (7 in all), throwing his full support behind Dareus in an effort to get him back on track is head coach Doug Marrone.

“Obviously, we all know and are well aware that Marcell has made some poor decisions lately and the one thing is that I’ve been working with him and he’s dealing with a lot of personal issues too,” Marrone said. “I spoke with him at length and we spent a lot of time together talking about a lot of things. As of now, he’s not going to be attending the OTA’s, but he’ll be attending the mandatory minicamp when we come back.

“I just want to make sure that I’m clear that everyone understands that I believe in Marcell and I will do everything I can to make sure that we can get him on the right track. Really that’s the situation. There are a lot of things going on, a lot of personal talk and that’s really all I’m going to comment on. The conversations we had are between us and we’re working this thing. I’m disappointed in all of our players anytime anyone of us, including myself, when we make poor decisions. It’s a reflection of the team, which is a reflection of me and it’s a reflection on this organization.”

Marrone went on to say that it’s more important for him to do right by a person who needs help over everything else.

“When any player makes a poor decision I always think of where I made a mistake,” he said. “That’s the truth. I just feel that way and when I make decisions to not play people, bench him and all that other stuff, I do it because winning, don’t get me wrong my job is to win and winning is important, but it’s not as important as trying to help somebody.

“I’d rather lose games and do the right thing in my mind, not everybody else’s mind, not the media’s mind and not the public opinion’s mind. My mind. I’d rather do the right thing and I can live with myself. At the end of the day, I’m the one that is going to have to live with myself. That’s the way I treat it. Right wrong or indifferent, it might not be what people want to hear, but that is more important to me. Trying to do the right thing and help people, than it is to win.”

 


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Report: Bills pick up 5th yr option on Dareus

Posted by Chris Brown on April 25, 2014 – 11:53 am

The deadline to pick up the fifth-year option on Marcell Dareus’ rookie contract was fast approaching, and the Bills not surprisingly have acted. According to ESPN NFL reporter Adam Schefter the club has picked up the fifth-year option on Dareus meaning he’ll be under contract through the 2015 season.

Buffalo had until May 3rd to do so. If confirmed by the club Dareus will be paid equivalent to the transition tag at his defensive tackle position in 2015, or top 10 money in the league at his position. The figure for 2014 is currently $9.65M.

UPDATE:


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Whaley: Extension for Dareus on radar

Posted by Chris Brown on February 21, 2014 – 7:17 pm

Bills GM Doug Whaley covered a range of topics at the NFL Combine Friday with the WNY media. And while there are certainly more pressing issues in terms of personnel for Buffalo’s front office, Whaley did not deny that extending the contract of Marcell Dareus is on the list.

“It’s on our radar, but right now we prioritize things,” said Whaley. “With this system there’s a lot of things you want to get done. There’s a lot of things you can’t get done because of the cap situation. Limitations from the cap, not our cap situation. I believe our cap situation we can get done what we need to get done, but you won’t get done the laundry list of things that you want to get done.”

Dareus is entering the final year of his rookie contract from when the Bills made him the third overall pick in the 2011 NFL draft, but with other personnel matters like Buffalo’s unrestricted free agents right now putting the front office under more a time crunch it sounds like Dareus’ contract situation is an item further down on the to-do list.

 


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Dareus hoping Pettine stays put

Posted by Chris Brown on January 21, 2014 – 11:29 am

Bills DT Marcell Dareus, who is headed to Hawaii for his first Pro Bowl, made an appearance on the John Murphy show Monday evening. After talking about his first NFL all-star game appearance he was asked about the possibility of losing Mike Pettine as his defensive coordinator knowing he’s in the running for the Cleveland Browns head coaching post.

“Oh man. I don’t know. I have no control over that,” said a suddenly serious Dareus. “I would really, really hate to see him leave. At the same time it’s still a business and football is football and we’ve got to just go out there and play.”

With Denver offensive coordinator Adam Gase now reportedly removing his name as a candidate for the Browns job, Pettine’s odds of becoming a head coach in the NFL have improved.

Dareus liked the way Pettine gave him freedom in his role at defensive tackle this past season.

“They pretty much gave me the freedom to do my job and play the game I wanted to play,” Dareus said. “He told me to play hard and be myself. Coach Pettine always let us go, let the defensive line go and get after the quarterback when we can and when we know it’s a pass.”

Dareus finished with a career-high 7.5 sacks in 2013.

 


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Dareus add gives Bills rare 3 DL in Pro Bowl

Posted by Chris Brown on January 21, 2014 – 11:18 am

With Marcell Dareus added to the Pro Bowl roster Monday it gives Buffalo three defensive linemen in one Pro Bowl for the first time in team history as he joins Kyle Williams and Mario Williams.

It’s also the first time one NFL club has sent three defensive linemen to the Pro Bowl in the same year since 2008 when Minnesota sent Jared Allen, Kevin Williams and Pat Williams to Honolulu.

Dareus also gives Buffalo four players at the Pro Bowl (Byrd, K. Williams, M. Williams). It’s the first time the Bills have had four players at one Pro Bowl since 2004 when they had DT Sam Adams, CB Nate Clements, KR Terrence McGee and LB Takeo Spikes go.

The last time Buffalo came close to having three defensive linemen in the Pro Bowl in the same year was 1997 when Bruce Smith, Ted Washington and Bryce Paup all went, but Paup was a linebacker in Buffalo straight 3-4 system even though he was often at the line in a two-point stance.


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Kyle, Mario got Dareus on right path

Posted by Chris Brown on January 21, 2014 – 10:53 am

When Marcell Dareus came to the Bills as their third overall pick in 2011, he was all of 21-years old. The commitment to being a pro every single day was something the talented defensive tackle had to learn. Fortunately for him he had mentors in Kyle Williams and Mario Williams.

It took until year three of his career for it to kick in, but Dareus prepared like a pro and it made him a more consistent player on the field. In an appearance on the John Murphy Show Monday after he was named as an injury replacement to the Pro Bowl, Dareus tipped his hat to his two veteran teammates and fellow Pro Bowlers.

“To come in the league with Kyle Williams and Mario Williams they showed me so much and they told me just how to stay focused this year and learn the league and watch film and break film down the way it’s supposed to be broken down and stay consistent with your work, being with those guys I just kind of blossomed into the player that I always wanted to be,” he said. “I’ve just got to build on it and stay consistent and remain the guy I always want to be known as and that’s what I did this year.”


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Dareus over the moon about Pro Bowl nod

Posted by Chris Brown on January 21, 2014 – 10:41 am

Bills DT Marcell Dareus left on a 6 am flight bound for Honolulu this morning. He’ll arrive on the South Pacific at 3 pm Hawaii time to prepare for his first Pro Bowl as he was named an injury replacement Monday for San Francisco’s Justin Smith. Dareus appeared on the John Murphy show last night and his excitement was obvious.

“Oh my God, words can’t even express how I feel about the whole thing right now,” Dareus said. “It’s almost happening too fast. I’m just trying to get a hold of myself.”

Dareus knew he was a Pro Bowl alternate, but didn’t know until this past weekend that his chances to go to the Pro Bowl could improve based on how things played out in last Sunday’s NFC Championship game.

“My agent called me and said, ‘Marcell just be prepared just in case anything happens on Sunday you may be sliding into the Pro Bowl,’” Dareus said. “So we waited to see what the outcome was. It’s a great feeling. I can’t even explain it right now.”

Dareus, who posted a career high in tackles and sacks this past season explained what he felt turned his play around in 2013.

“It was just more focus on myself and stay in the game and not let off field distractions get in the way of me playing good and being consistent,” he said. “I just kind of focused in on what I had to do and pulled it off. Talking to my brothers and sisters helped and we just put it all together and made it happen.”

 


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Kyle tops NFL DTs in advanced metrics

Posted by Chris Brown on January 13, 2014 – 9:44 am

Bills DT Kyle Williams has already been recognized by his peers and opposing coaches as a Pro Bowl caliber player for the third time in his career. The advanced metrics football site AdvancedNFLStats.com agree wholeheartedly in Williams with their figures backing them up.

Williams is rated as the highest defensive tackle in the NFL for his performance in 2013. The veteran DT had the highest Win Probability Added figure with his time on the field for the Bills last season.

In addition Buffalo’s Marcell Dareus was rated seventh overall, making the Bills one of just two NFL clubs with two players in the top 10 on the list. The other team was the Detroit Lions, who had Ndamokung Suh and Nick Fairley. They rated second and fifth respectively.

Rank Player Team G +WPA +EPA +EPA/G SC Tkl Asst TF Sk SkYd PD QBHit FF TklLoss Int
1 95-K.Williams BUF 32 3.45 101.6 3.18 130 84 50 0.51 22 148 2 42 2 28 0
2 90-N.Suh DET 30 3.08 104.7 3.49 95 72 22 0.50 10 82 12 34 2 18 0
3 93-G.McCoy TB 30 2.84 89.3 2.98 105 70 30 0.46 18 132 8 38 0 30 0
4 97-J.Hatcher DAL 28 2.76 75.3 2.69 75 68 14 0.39 22 184 6 28 4 30 0
5 98-N.Fairley DET 30 2.74 79.4 2.65 87 47 25 0.38 14 74 2 40 4 17 0
6 93-K.Williams MIN 30 2.57 63.5 2.12 60 32 26 0.24 10 64 10 18 0 8 2
7 99-M.Dareus BUF 32 2.52 71.4 2.23 124 92 50 0.54 16 122 6 22 2 16 0
8 99-C.Jenkins NYG 30 2.22 67.0 2.23 66 50 12 0.26 12 50 0 24 4 14 0
9 94-R.Starks MIA 28 2.17 53.9 1.93 84 70 24 0.45 6 24 2 10 2 12 0
10 92-B.Mebane SEA 32 2.16 79.1 2.47 95 42 48 0.40 0 0 2 12 0 12 0

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Fan Friday 1-3

Posted by Chris Brown on January 3, 2014 – 11:57 am

Happy New Year Bills fans! We can only hope that 2014 will hold much better fortunes for the team. In fact hopefully this Fan Friday edition next year will be talking about the postseason with the Bills in it. Here’s your latest edition of questions on email at AskChris@bills.nfl.net and on Twitter @ChrisBrownBills.

1 - @ChrisBrownBills is dareus being traded for being late to meetings just smoke?

Guy Rosenbarker Jr.@rosenbarker

CB: I did not hear that rumor and would be stunned if that happened. Here’s where I believe coach Marrone and Doug Whaley stand on Dareus. He just had his most productive season in the NFL. He’s 23-years old. He’s done some irresponsible things as they pertain to the team (chronic lateness). Marrone has said they have addressed the issue. Dareus, to his credit, faced the music in the postgame locker room after his first half benching and sounded remorseful. He has to live with that feeling of letting his teammates down all offseason. I think the Bills see that as a motivator for Dareus moving forward and it should be.

Perhaps the most important thing to come out of Dareus’ postgame comments last week were his references to being a leader. Obviously coach Marrone told him he expects Dareus to be a future leader on the team, and that he can’t help lead a team when he can’t be a responsible professional himself. But it’s clear the path they see Dareus traveling with this team. Hopefully Dareus can see it too.

 

2 – @ChrisBrownBills With @jairusbyrd can they start negotiating now?

T‏@Scorpio_1st

CB: Yes, now that the regular season is over they can resume negotiations with Jairus Byrd on a long term contract extension provided the Byrd camp wants to negotiate. Byrd’s last public comments on the John Murphy Show were that he was open to returning to the Bills on a long term contract. Of course he’s open to anything that might come his way.

Bills GM Doug Whaley said this week they will make him an offer in an effort to keep him long term. Whether it’s enough to convince the free agent safety remains to be seen.

 

3 – Chris,
With the roster in evaluation mode, who are the 2014 Bills free agents? How high is Carrington on the Bills list? Will the Bills be awarded a high pick for Levitre?

CB: Hopefully you saw my blog earlier this week listing the free agents. With Alan Branch already re-signed it gives Buffalo some leverage with Carrington. I’m sure they would like to add Carrington back to the fold, but he’s got to prove he’s healthy coming off his torn quadriceps suffered back in Week 3. I talked briefly to Carrington a couple of weeks ago and he’s said his rehab has gone quite well.

The Bills tried to re-sign Carrington right before the season started, but were turned down by Carrington’s agent, who also happens to be the same agent for Jairus Byrd. The market will be considerably softer for Carrington due to the injury, so the Bills can probably afford to provide just a reasonable offer to get him back on the roster.

As for a compensatory pick it begins and ends with a net loss of free agents. I don’t believe they had a net loss of free agents knowing they signed Manny Lawson, Alan Branch, Kevin Kolb and Doug Legursky while losing Andy Levitre, Chad Rinehart and Kyle Moore (who did not make Chicago’s roster).

Levitre’s large salary could net a compensatory for Buffalo, but we’ll have to see which signings the league qualifies as free agent losses. Moore’s small salary upon signing with the Bears may be excluded.

 

4 – Hey Chris,
My question is in regards to the players during off season. Do the players with injuries going into the off season continue rehabbing with the Bills training staff, Drs., etc at the Bills facility? What about the players whose contracts are up after this year? Is it now their own responsibility to find ways of rehabbing injuries outside of the Bills organization?

Thanks Chris, Tim in Niagara Ontario

CB: To my knowledge it is usually at the player’s discretion as to where they would prefer to rehab. Some have chosen to rehab here in town in the offseason (e.g. Marcus Easley). Others have chosen to rehab back home and then come in for periodic check-ups with the Bills medical and training staff.

For players whose contracts are up after this season, they technically can still rehab with the Bills because their contracts do not expire until March 11th. But that is not usually what players in that situation choose to do.

 

5 – Chris:
Great job of coverage again this year, so thank you for all of your consistent hard work in keeping Bills fans on top of what is going on.

Looking ahead to the 2014 season, it looks like the Bills will be facing the AFC West and NFC North teams due to the rotating schedules. So, that means the Bills will be tested by the likes of Peyton Manning, Phillip Rivers, Drew Stafford, Alex Smith, Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady and Ryan Tannehill, to name a few.

Do you think the upcoming schedule plays any role or factor in how the Bills will view the importance of bringing back Jairus Byrd for 2014, based on the level of quarterbacks that the team will face next year?

Besides Byrd, any news or updates on players that the Bills are trying to sign to contract extensions before they hit free agency? Thanks Chris.

Dan in Cheshire, CT

CB: Thanks for the compliments Dan. Much appreciated.

While the list of quarterbacks for Buffalo’s opponents in 2014 is impressive I don’t know that it’s a determining factor in how vigorously the Bills will pursue a new contract with Jairus Byrd. I think the decision on how determined they’ll be to re-sign him has already been made. Now they will simply try to execute that plan. Byrd’s value is already established in their eyes. Naturally Byrd has a value himself. That likely wasn’t impacted any more or any less by the quarterbacks they’ll be facing this coming season.


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Dareus regretting missteps

Posted by Chris Brown on December 29, 2013 – 10:56 pm

A week after being benched for the first quarter of Buffalo’s shutout win over Miami in Week 16, Marcell Dareus again broke a team rule the following week and found himself sidelined for a half in the season finale against New England. His absence was instrumental in seeing LeGarrette Blount rumble for 189 yards rushing and a pair of touchdowns in the Patriots 34-20 win.

Dareus was remorseful in the postgame locker room.

“It’s tough,” he said. “I just hate that I put my team in a position like that. As a player I’m just going to get better. Me and Coach talked about it. I’m going to grow as a player in the offseason and continue to work and do the best I can. I hate I put my team in that position.”

“Obviously there was a team violation. It was broken. I sat down with him again and talked about it and we’re both going to continue to work through it and move forward,” said Marrone.

Marrone did admit he missed having one of the leading tacklers at the defensive tackle position in the NFL.

“It would be naïve for me to stand up here and say no. We know what type of player Marcell is,” Marrone said. “The more we can have him out there playing the better we are.”

Dareus spoke to at least two of the team captains in Kyle Williams and Fred Jackson.

“We just know we can’t put ourselves in those situations and he knows that,” said Jackson. “He’s talked to me and I’m sure he’s talked to Kyle and we need him out there. Anytime he’s sitting on the bench he’s not helping us or helping this team.

“That’s a feeling that I know he doesn’t like so he knows he’s got to come back and be better at it next year and I’m sure he will. I have all the confidence in the world in him. Espeically after a day like this it’s something that’s going to be sticking with him all offseason and be motivating for him.”

Dareus said he addressed the team following his team infraction.

“I apologized to my guys,” he said. “Regardless of the situation, I let them know that I’m so sorry about what happened.  I’m sorry about the game today, and last week.  They know that I’m sorry for what happened and it’s done.  But it’s a team rule and we’re all with it.  I respect it.

“I’m just going to continue to move forward. Just be a better player all the way around. Come in to camp better and just be a better person. If I’m going to get to the next level to where I’m supposed to be as an elite player in the league and try to be a captain of the team, I have to do the best I can.  Continue to get better, be on time, and have no excuse for whatever the situation is.”

 


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