ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (WIVB) — Following the Bills’ 27-10 loss to the Cincinnati Bengals in the AFC Divisional round on Sunday, the message from head coach Sean McDermott is clear: the team has to do more evaluating to get to the next step.
“I’m a big believer in you are who you are in the last game of the season in terms of what you saw on the field and that’s what you have to address,” McDermott said in his final press conference of the season on Monday. “Obviously we weren’t good enough yesterday and we need to address those areas.”
Part of that comes in the coaching staff and coordinators Ken Dorsey and Leslie Frazier. Dorsey, who just finished his first year as offensive coordinator, had interviewed for the head coaching job for the Carolina Panthers, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, but McDermott did not comment on the status of either coordinator.
“There’s a first year for everyone and I thought Dorsey did some good things and there’s some things he can learn from as well,” McDermott said of Dorsey.
On the defensive side of the ball, the team has a major decision coming with safety Jordan Poyer, who is set to be an unrestricted free agent in March. The Bills are set to have nearly half of their cap space go towards five players in 2023: Josh Allen, Stefon Diggs, Von Miller, Tre White and Dion Dawkins. Allen’s cap hit of over $39 million will account for more than 17% of the entire team’s budget. McDermott said that he, general manager Brandon Beane and the rest of the front office will have to decide which positions they want to invest in.
“We have to place proper value on the positions that we feel will help us win a Super Bowl and then find those players at those positions that are going to help us win,” McDermott said.
Poyer dealt with injuries on and off throughout the year and was without his partner in the secondary in Micah Hyde, who played just two games this season due to a neck injury.
“He’s a tough football player. He’s been through a lot, he’s been one of the biggest leaders on our team and I’m extremely grateful for the way he’s led our football team,” McDermott said of Poyer. “We’ll just see what the future holds at this point.”
Part of the other evaluations is the coaching staff and front office talking about moving cornerback Christian Benford to safety next season.
“That’ll be one of the things we talk about in the evaluations starting tomorrow. That’s stuff we talked about way back when we first picked up Christian. We’ll just see where it goes.”
This is all part of the goal of getting the Bills over the hump and into the Super Bowl.
“We’ve had success, obviously not the success we all want which is to win the Super Bowl,” McDermott said. “The journey continues and we won’t stop until we get there.”
As for injuries, McDermott said that he does not expect Allen’s elbow injury to require surgery. Jordan Phillips will have surgery on a torn rotator cuff.