BATAVIA – Andre Reed might know a thing or two about talent at the wide receiver position.
He has a bronze bust in the Pro Football Hall of Fame to prove it.
This summer, Reed will have a chance to work with what he believes is a “talented group of guys” who will be catching passes for the Buffalo Bills, just as he did from 1985 to 1999.
As a Bill Walsh coaching intern, he will spend practices and meetings at the Bills’ training camp with the likes of Sammy Watkins, Robert Woods, Percy Harvin, and the rest of the 13 receivers the Bills will have on their training-camp roster.
“They could be the best group in the league,” Reed said Monday while taking part in the Jim Kelly Celebrity Golf Tournament at Terry Hills Golf Course. “Right now,” the question is, “who’s going to be the quarterback? But talent-wise, they’re real talented guys, all of them. All of them can run, they all catch, they run good routes. I think it’s just what the makeup of the offense is going to be.”
Reed, who did a similar internship with the Kansas City Chiefs last summer, isn’t setting out to turn anyone into a future Hall-of-Famer with his coaching skills. He is simply looking to lend an ear and helpful advice wherever he can.
“I just want to be that guy that they can talk to,” he said. “They can talk to me about anything. They can ask me any question about anything. What I bring to the table is I’ve been there; they know that. And I think, whatever experience I can bring to them to make them better every day, that’s what it’s about.
“I’m going to let them talk to me about things. And, by observation, then I can say something. Those guys run stuff and do stuff their own way, and I’m just a liaison, help them out with some different things and what they want.”
Reed, 51, hopes his intern work will eventually lead to a full-time coaching job in the NFL. He said that has been a “long-time” goal of his.
“My kids are older now,” Reed said. “If it’s the right situation, I’ll do it.”
One of the best lines of the day came from running back Anthony “Boobie” Dixon, who before taking his turn in a long-drive competition before the tournament, said, “Boobie Woods!” He proceeded to send the ball careening into trees at nearly a 45-degree angle to his right.
Dixon was among the majority of current players who did not compete in the tournament, but gave driving a try. At least he made contact with the ball, something that multiple players failed to do.
Rex Ryan admitted he isn’t much of a golfer, and demonstrated as much on one of his drives. But he did crush one.
Not surprisingly, Bills rookie tight end Nick O’Leary, grandson of golfing legend Jack Nicklaus, showed impressive form on his drives.
Besides being familiar with Ryan and other members of the Bills’ coaching staff from spending parts of the last three seasons with them on the New York Jets, newly acquired quarterback Matt Simms has a close friend on the team in wide receiver Chris Hogan.
They grew up near each other – Hogan in Ramapo and Simms in Franklin Lakes, N.J. – and have worked out together for years. Although he’s hardly objective, Hogan raved about Simms’ passing skills and said he felt he was never given a fair chance by Jets management.
After calling off Monday’s OTA practice so that all of his players could be present for the Kelly tournament, Ryan has six sessions left. The next two are scheduled for Wednesday and Thursday. Only the Wednesday session is open to the media this week.
Speaking of which, Bills running back LeSean McCoy is due to speak with reporters Wednesday for the first time since accusing Chip Kelly, his former coach with the Philadelphia Eagles, of making roster decisions based on race. McCoy joined his teammates at the tournament, but did not talk with the media.