Inside The Bills

New coach will have same top task as last

Posted by Chris Brown on January 2, 2013 – 11:54 am

Former Bills head coach Chan Gailey’s primary task walking in the door back in 2010 was to eradicate the losing culture that had enveloped the team’s locker room and made the team one that lacked mental toughness in games. Gailey came very close to ridding the team of that losing culture, but it came back to rear its ugly head in 2012.

“I think for sure it’s crept back in,” Bills GM Buddy Nix told of the losing culture with respect to the team’s locker room. “If you look back over any coach’s tenure there are one or two games each year that keep you from being successful or get you over the hump. You go back to our first year here against Pittsburgh we drop a pass in the end zone. Baltimore we fumble in overtime. We’ve got both of those teams beat. Those kind of things. New England we fumble twice or we beat them up there and here. We turned the ball over. We play New England, that’s the team we’re trying to beat, you’ve got 10 turnovers and 20 penalties this year (in two games).”

Gailey and his staff were very close to pushing that losing culture over the cliff in 2011. The team was riding high after a 3-0 start and came out of their Week 8 game against Washington with a 23-0 shutout win to improve to 5-2. Then it all went the wrong way in a hurry as injuries piled up and the team lost eight of their last 10 games and the losing culture had returned.

The staff had a chance to vanquish the losing culture with the start of the 2012 season, but the 42-28 loss to the Jets in Week 1, which was worse than the final score indicated created doubt. That doubt was then confirmed in the Week 4 loss to New England, a game in which Buffalo had a 21-7 lead. From there is was tough for the staff, let alone any team leader in the locker room to reverse the losing culture that had re-emerged.

That’s why Buffalo’s new head coach, much like Gailey, will again have the preliminary task of wiping out the losing culture all over again.

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Posted in Inside the Bills
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