Welcome home, Brian Daboll.
"A football coaching career that has included stops with the best of the best, the New England Patriots and University of Alabama, has brought Daboll full circle as the St. Francis High School graduate Sunday was named the new offensive coordinator of the Buffalo Bills," Vic Carucci writes in his introduction to a coach with whom many in Western New York are already familiar, including Sean McDermott.
"The 42-year-old Daboll, who is a native of Welland, Ont., but was raised in West Seneca by his grandparents, has a connection with McDermott dating back to when Daboll was a restricted earning coach at William & Mary in 1997 and McDermott played safety there."
Bucky Gleason: "Sunday was a day to remember for St. Francis, the small private school in Athol Springs that has produced more NFL executives and coaches than any high school in America."
By the numbers: Daboll has won five Super Bowl rings with the Patriots and six college football national championships working under Nick Saban. He's also had three previous stints as an NFL offensive coordinator, with the Cleveland Browns (2009-10), Miami Dolphins (2011) and Kansas City Chiefs (2012). Take a look at how those offenses performed (and note the lackluster list of quarterbacks Daboll has had to work with).
Divisional playoffs: The Vikings shocked the Saints in one of the most memorable endings in NFL playoff history. Bills fans reacted to the Jaguars beating the Steelers and advancing to face the Patriots. Two fans who were expecting the Bills to be playing in New England on Saturday night went to the game anyway, and made it clear where their allegiances lie.
How much longer will New England's dynasty reign? "Perhaps there's a crack, finally, although it may not open wide enough to affect the Patriots this season," Bucky Gleason writes. "New England very well could win another Super Bowl this year in spite – or because – of the noise around them. But there are signs of their remarkable run inching toward the end."
Zay Jones needs shoulder surgery: The rookie receiver never appeared on the injury report for his shoulder, but Vic Carucci confirms that Jones will have an operation this week to repair a torn labrum.
Bills Stay or Go: We asked and more than 5,000 responded. Here are the results of a series of polls conducted by [BN]blitz.com in the aftermath of the Bills’ playoff loss.
Super Bowl-era memoir: Former Bills linebacker, ESPN commentator and author Ray Bentley is writing a book about his years in Buffalo.