Bills offensive coordinator Anthony Lynn gave a plug on Thursday for quarterback Tyrod Taylor – and by extension, members of the coaching staff – to keep his job next season.
After a discussion of Taylor's pocket presence, Lynn was asked how much more Taylor could improve given that he'd be entering his seventh year in the league. Lynn said growth can happen under his tutelage.
"I think he’s definitely sharp enough to progress," Lynn said. "But he’s only a one-year player with me. I’ve only had him for what, 11 games? So I think, going through an offseason, I can see him developing. He’s a sharp guy. I don’t see why he wouldn’t."
The Bills could decide Taylor's contract option isn't worth picking up, sending him into free agency. There have also been reports that head coach Rex Ryan could be fired after the season. But an improved Taylor would mean a more dangerous team and better playoff chances next year, which would be one of the stronger arguments Ryan has to keep his job.
"You hear it," Lynn said of reports Ryan's job is in jeopardy. "You try not to pay attention to it, but you do hear it and it can affect you sometimes. We want to win because that’s what we’re paid to do but also want to win for Rex. He’s a good coach, he’s a great man. And so we hear the noise but we try to eliminate it."
On Taylor, Lynn was asked if he thinks his quarterback feels the appropriate amount of pressure in the pocket and if he stays with the play long enough before scrambling.
"He’s stayed in the pocket at times, he’s delivered the ball, and sometimes he’s gotten out a little quick," Lynn said. "But when you’re a mobile, athletic quarterback like him, sometimes what makes you special can sometimes hurt you in the passing game. It’s no question he depends on his legs sometimes too much. But that’s a learning process and that’s something you can do drilling over and over with footwork, getting the quarterback to stay in tune with his feet and how many hitches he takes, and can practice his reads and his progression."
Lynn was also asked if he feels Taylor is too hesitant to throw over the middle and if that has contributed to tight end Charles Clay's down year.
"He is cautious with the ball. That’s why we’re tied for first in the league in turnovers," Lynn said. "Sometimes he can be too cautious, but I’ll take a guy like that over a guy that throws it all over the place and creates mistakes.
"You know, Charles Clay does a lot of work over the middle. It could" be a factor, he said. "It could. But I think Charles not practicing every day and not having that me-to-you factor with the quarterback, some quarterbacks need that trust factor to throw to a guy. I think that’s some of it. And when a player’s not on the field, no matter how good you are, your skills will start to diminish if you’re not out there practicing."