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I was about to put the Mailbag to bed on Friday when the big news broke about the Sammy Watkins and Ronald Darby trades. So the column was put back a day and, not surprisingly, the roof nearly blew off the old mailbox. People are all over the place about the trades, though the overall sentiment is positive. Bills fans are understandably conflicted. Many agree it's in th…

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Brandon Beane was asked a simple question when he took to the lectern shortly after 4 p.m. on his blockbuster Friday. Did trading Sammy Watkins and Ronald Darby make the Bills a better team? "For the 2017 season?" the Bills first-year general manager said. "You could make arguments either way." He has a point there, but I'll embrace the contrary argument. The trades,…

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Sean McDermott and Brandon Beane, the Buffalo Bills' rookie head coach and GM, each was asked if the 2017 roster got better after Friday's trades. They slipped the questions as Floyd Mayweather would an off-balance roundhouse. But throughout their news conferences at One Bills Drive, McDermott and Beane acknowledged they hurt their chances of winning this year. Th…

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Brandon Beane couldn't say whether the Bills got better by trading Sammy Watkins and Ronald Darby on Friday. Sean McDermott wasn't sure, either. Allow me to help them out here. The Bills didn't get better. They got worse. It's understandable that Beane and McDermott wouldn't concede that it was a step back. They have to sell these deals to their team, which expects to c…

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It's a conflicted day in Buffalo sports. I feel both terrible and good for long-suffering Bills Nation. In the big picture, Friday's trade of Sammy Watkins and Ronald Darby is good news for die-hard fans. As The News' Jerry Sullivan has said over and over the past decade (and no doubt will say again), the Bills' management finally has stopped "middling it." Unlike…

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What we see in the preseason easily could be rationalized and justified and washed away by the mere fact these exhibitions don't count in the standings. The real games are a month away. There's time to make strategic corrections, to coach up those players. Sean McDermott isn't willing to make excuses when it comes to penalties, even in the preseason. There were far too m…

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It would be unbecoming for any self-respecting person to take joy from another man's pain, but rest assured a select few (hundred thousand) Bills fans felt a jolt of optimism last Thursday when Ryan Tannehill reinjured his left knee and Tom Brady celebrated his 40th birthday. Buffalo people are known for their warm hearts (and love for food and beer), but Buffalo fans h…

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No matter how clichéd, here is the cold truth when it comes to Colin Kaepernick and his inability over the past five months to land a job in the NFL: Playing professional sports is a privilege, not a right. And no matter how many or how loud his supporters, that's not going to change. Kaepernick found out the hard way after sitting and later kneeling last season during …

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The moment John Urschel announced his retirement Thursday, two days after a study revealed that all but one of 111 NFL players whose brains were donated for research had suffered from CTE, many people had the same general reaction: Urschel's brain was too precious to expose to football. Urschel is a unique individual, a math savant who graduated from Penn State with thr…

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PITTSFORD – On the first day of training camp, after briefly mugging for a camera, Marcell Dareus bolted for a set off doors leading to the Bills' locker room that were off limits to the media. His response when asked to stop for a brief interview: "I need to take a shower." Dareus took a more scenic route to the locker room Friday. He walked toward one end of the pract…

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PITTSFORD – Sean McDermott and Brandon Beane were embarking on their first training camp in their respective positions Thursday, so naturally they weren't lacking for enthusiasm. At times, they beamed with excitement like freshmen who had been invited to practice with the varsity. You couldn't help but envy their energy and optimism, qualities that had been drained from…