Wyatt Teller is only approaching his second season as an NFL guard, and already he's working with his second offensive line coach and a whole bunch of new faces in his position group.
"It's definitely crazy," Teller said of the several offensive linemen the Bills added via free agency and the draft. "I mean, the guys they brought in, there's a reason. They wanted to bring along competition."
Offensive line arguably was the team's weakest area during last season's 6-10 finish. There were problems everywhere, which is why there could be four or possibly five new starters this year and is why Bobby Johnson, not Juan Castillo, is coaching the position.
Wyatt, who the Bills made a fifth-round draft pick from Virginia Tech, started the final seven games of the 2018 season at left guard. Now, he doesn't know if he'll have the chance to pick up where he left off.
"Nothing's ever given," Teller said as the Bills wrapped up offseason workouts with their mandatory minicamp. "You hear the old heads always say, 'They're always trying to get someone younger, better than you' or whatever it is. Luckily, I'm the young guy, so if they get anybody younger, it's kind of crazy. It's only a year.
"But they're always trying to get the best talent, the best players out there. If you look at that as a negative, you'll never go anywhere. But if you look at it as competition, and it's only going to get you better, then the sky's the limit. And I think that our offensive line is good. I mean, we have a lot of great parts, we have good communication. It's just putting it all together and having the best five out there."
Still, the 6-foot-4, 314-pound Teller is making no assumptions that having the chance to start as a rookie gives him any sort of advantage now. Nor is he looking at the Bills' additions of more experienced guards in free-agent acquisitions Spencer Long, Quinton Spain and Jon Feliciano, or the second-round selection of former Oklahoma standout Cody Ford — who can play tackle and guard — as any disadvantage.
"You're never entitled," Teller said. "You never expect anything, you have to earn every piece of the pie. You would like to think, 'Hey, they brought me in for a reason.' But they also brought those guys in for a reason. That's the name of the game.
"I mean, yeah, I'm young, but I'm starting to get it a little bit that it's easy to be entitled and to lose that the mindset of staying hungry and attacking each day, because each day is important. Each day is trying to get the best five, trying to find consistency, continuity, stuff like that. Which five work best together? We have great players out there and it's cool to see everybody working together and new faces and a melting pot."
Teller had plenty of time on the field during drills. That included a chance to work with the Bills' top free-agent signee, center Mitch Morse, who returned to practice during minicamp for the first time since undergoing postseason core-muscle surgery. Teller practiced at both guard spots and center during offseason workouts.
But he made a point of saying that, at least in his mind, there is no set pecking order with the offensive linemen.
"Just from my viewpoint, it's a rep chart, not a depth chart," Teller said. "The last time I checked, we're not playing this Sunday. We've got two months to go. There's so much to think about. If you're focusing on that, who's going to start game one, then you're already in the wrong mindset. So the best thing I can say is just keep it day-by-day and play-by-play and whatever happens, happens."
Adjusting to the different coaching styles from Castillo to Johnson has also been a process.
"Both are great coaches," Teller said. "The biggest thing with Coach Castillo was him saying, 'Over and over, until it becomes natural.' Coach Johnson, he's a mauler. That's what he's all about, really attacking the guy, really like mauling the guy out of his stance. There's a bunch of things that Bobby does well, but it's still (a matter of) learning his coaching style."