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[BN] Blitz newsletter: This Christmas, Josh Allen is thankful he got some veteran QBs around

Bills rookie quarterback Josh Allen was asked this week about his greatest learning experience since becoming a professional.

Allen said it came after the Texans game, when he suffered the elbow injury that caused him to miss four weeks. That led to the signings of veteran quarterbacks Derek Anderson and Matt Barkley.

"They showed me what it was like to be a professional football player, a professional quarterback – to come in, do things the right way, how they watched film, how they prepared for games, how they approached walk-throughs at practice and then how they prepared on game day, something that I hadn't seen before," Allen said. "They've been in the league for a combined 16-17 years, so they have a lot of experience. For me to see that, that was huge."

Allen said he likes Anderson's "presence when we watch film. ... He’ll kind of tell me, 'If they’re an "over" team and that three tech (lineman) is misplaced, they’re bringing pressure here.' Just certain situations like that in film (study), where he just gives me kind of like these tidbits that I’m like, I didn't even know that. I’m still learning the game of football, and they're still helping me."

It's great that Allen finally has someone he can learn from. Barkley even parlayed his tutelage into a two-year contract extension. But seeing how much Allen enjoys having these guys around makes it all the more head-scratching why the team didn't bring in a veteran quarterback during training camp. Allen undoubtedly would've learned more by having a veteran walk him through things than by watching AJ McCarron try to fend off Nathan Peterman for the starting job.

Sean McDermott reaffirms his belief in LeSean McCoy's value to Bills in 2019: The Bills would be able to get more than $6 million off their books for next season by cutting LeSean McCoy, who is having the worst season of his career. But the team says McCoy is still in their plans: "Overall, I’m really excited about where we’re going and LeSean being a part of that,” coach Sean McDermott said. “I know this year wasn’t what he had hoped it would be. The biggest thing I want to see is what are we going to do to get it back to where it needs to be. So I think he’s committed to that cause, as are we." Still, McCoy's roster spot won't feel completely safe until the final day of cuts – the salary cap savings would be the same whether McCoy is cut in the spring or in August.



Turnovers lead list of ways Bills did not measure up to last year: The Bills have committed the second-most turnovers in the NFL this season. Their turnover margin going from plus-9 last year to minus-8 this year is a big factor in their decreased record. The Bills are 0-8 this season when losing the turnover margin and 4-0 when winning it.

Bills' pass rush performs as expected against Tom Brady: The Bills' pass rush got to Brady at about their season rate, which kept them in the top 5 in pressure rate.


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