Pat Shurmur’s Josh Allen comment catches Bills’ attentionSeptember 13, 2019
Intentionally or not, Giants coach Pat Shurmur provided some digital bulletin-board material for the Bills this week with his quotes about Buffalo quarterback Josh Allen.
A tweet by the NFL Network’s Kimberly Jones, quoting Shurmur on Wednesday as saying he believed during the lead-up to the 2018 draft that Allen “had a chance to be a starter” in the NFL, was displayed Thursday on televisions around the Bills’ training complex, according to The Athletic.
The Giants ended up drafting Saquon Barkley with the second pick in last year’s draft, with Allen the third quarterback selected at No. 7 overall.
Shurmur’s initial quote about Allen when asked Wednesday about the second-year quarterback included that the Giants’ head coach thought Allen “was a big, strong thrower” and “a guy that had a chance to be a starter in the NFL.”
“And he has been for them,” Shurmur said. “I think he’s made steady improvements. He’s a very strong-armed guy. He’s helped them win some big games already. Just like any young player, you see where he’ll make mistakes and then correct them.’’
Asked to clarify if the “chance to be a starter” line could be construed as a low bar for Allen, Shurmur reiterated, “I thought he had a chance to be a starter. I was asked what I thought of him, and that’s what we thought of him. He had a chance to be a starter.’’
According to The Athletic, Bills head coach Sean McDermott replied, “I’m not going to get into that” when asked about Shurmur’s quotes, adding that what appears on TVs in the Bills’ complex is “internal messaging.”
Defensive coordinator James Bettcher indicated that first-round pick DeAndre Baker (selected 30th overall) could start at cornerback this week in place of Antonio Hamilton, opposite Janoris Jenkins.
“We have to play better at that spot. We have to tackle better at that spot. That’s really what it came down to, some missed tackles at that position,” Bettcher said. “Bake’s gonna get a chance there to play, and you’ll see Ham in the situation, and we’ll go from there.
“I think the plan will reveal itself like last week on Sunday, and we just have to play better at the spot, just with the little things. It’s not ability, it’s not what the guys are capable of doing, they just need to be able to do and execute things.”
Bettcher also said sixth-round pick Corey Ballentine is “growing and improving, and he’s certainly putting himself by daily work in a position to compete for that spot.”
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