Bills left tackle Dion Dawkins hemmed and hawed, unable to identify his favorite “guilty pleasure” Christmas song.
So Josh Allen offered a suggestion.
“Is it Mariah Carey, 'All I Want For Christmas Is You?’ ” Allen asked, drawing laughs from the crowd.
Allen’s teammates and coaches have talked up his ability to command a huddle, and about 100 Bills fans received a glimpse of the rookie quarterback’s ability to command a room when Allen and Dawkins participated in a “fan press conference” on Monday night at Dos Amigos on the Lake in Blasdell.
It was suggested that Allen should sing a Mariah Carey song at karaoke one night, as part of rookie initiation.
“Don’t give them any ideas!” he said.
Allen and Dawkins fielded a handful of questions over 20 minutes before posing for photos a day after the Bills defeated the Jacksonville Jaguars, 24-21, at New Era Field.
The quarterback praised Bills fans as being the best part about playing in Buffalo.
“They show up for every game. They do,” Allen said. “And (Sunday), if you came in not knowing football or not knowing records, you would have thought we had the best record in the league, because we showed out. If it wasn’t sold out, it was pretty dang close. The noise in there was awesome. It counted for a couple of false starts, a couple of delay of games, and that really helps a team.
"That builds our confidence as we go out there, so we appreciate you guys. And you guys may not know that, but you guys are a huge key to our wins at home, because it’s a tough place to play and teams don’t want to come up here in the cold, and then they have to face the Bills Mafia in the stands, as well.”
Allen made a point to mention that the offensive line didn’t allow a sack against the Jaguars, motioning toward Dawkins, eliciting more cheers from the crowd.
He praised the Jaguars’ defense, which entered the game ranked third in the NFL in yards allowed, and cited a handful of their top players, including cornerback Jalen Ramsey, whose name drew boos.
“Yeah, yeah,” Allen said.
It was clear he was at ease and having fun.
Someone asked whether his arm was feeling better, considering he had missed the previous four games with a strained right elbow.
“What do you guys think?” Allen asked, and the crowd responded with a cheer.
“It is, it is. I appreciate you asking me,” Allen said. “My elbow is feeling a lot better. I’m just happy I can be back on the field, playing with my guys. It was a special day (Sunday).”
Since Allen led the team in rushing yards against the Jaguars on Sunday, setting a Bills quarterback record with 99 yards and a touchdown on 13 carries, one fan jokingly asked whether LeSean McCoy had reason to be nervous or worried.
“That’s a great question. Give it up for him,” Allen said. “If you guys knew Shady like we know Shady, he’s got no worries. He’s got no worries at all. Shady’s the man. He’s the vet that kind of took me under his wing. He’s awesome. Me and Dawk love the dude. He works extremely hard. That’s a good question. I’ll make sure to give him some drama about that one, too.”
Allen was asked about how it feels to already be called this team’s “franchise quarterback.”
“Listen, I love Buffalo. I already do,” Allen said. “I’m so thankful and so blessed to be able to be here. It’s my type of town, my type of city. I’m just thankful to play with these guys, my teammates, my coaches. Coach (Sean) McDermott’s really got us on the right path. And I’m really just trying to take it one day at a time. All I want to do is win football games, and that’s it. I don’t care how ugly, how pretty it looks. If we’re winning football games, that’s what makes me the happiest, and to do it with these guys makes it that much sweeter. Thank you.”