And so it begins, life in charge of the Buffalo Bills. The remit is simple, make the play-offs within four years — even if the bookies over at Honest Jim’s have the Bills 20/1 to win the Super Bowl, 9/1 to win the conference and 13/8 the division.
Ignoring those odds, the plan is become a force in the AFC within half a decade. It would have been shorter but the recent trades of Sammy Watkins and Ronald Darby has left a pretty average roster now looking quite depleted of genuine quality. Not to mention when you are in the AFC East with the New England Patriots, a wildcard spot is your only option. For now.
The plan would be to let Tom Brady retire and dominate the East that way. However, Brady is never going to retire and I back my ability to build a roster capable of competing for the division.
That roster will be built through the draft, with six picks in the first three rounds of the 2018 draft, there is plenty of opportunity to pick up amazing talent that can make a difference during my time in Buffalo.
It may be a young squad but it will be fairly cheap, as we try and manage the cap and not rely on overpaid, aging players.
Obviously, there will be some players deemed not good enough to get the franchise where I envisage it being in a few years but the plan is to use those players to get the picks needed to build a franchise with plenty of quality depth in each position.
The flip side to that is there are players worth building around. LeSean McCoy and Tyrod Taylor on the offence, Reggie Ragland, Shaq Lawson, Marcel Dareus on the other side of the ball. There isn’t much but Rome wasn’t built overnight. Neither were the Patriots.
Being a defence-minded player, my first port of call will be that side of the ball and with my experience being in the 3-4, the team will be going through another switch from 4-3. Because the days of 3-4 are quite recent, there are enough players already in the building to get us through the season. There are a few players I want to bring in via free agency but of course that will be kept under wraps until the season begins.
There have already been a few leaks in regards to players available for trade and while I cannot comment on such rumours, expect plenty of movement as I attempt to reach the play-offs with the Buffalo Bills.