Does Leslie Fraizer’s Exit Mean “It’s Over For Buffalo?”
When teams are "going all in" on a championship run, timing is everything. So with Leslie Frazier taking a step back, does it mean it's over for the Buffalo Bills?
Yesterday, the Buffalo Bills made an announcement that Leslie Frazier would be taking a step back from the team to take a year off from football. He's hoping to come back after the 2023 season. They said he needed a break but didn't want to retire from coaching just yet.
It's news that has Bills Mafia torn.
Some Bills fans wanted Frazier gone anyway
It should be noted that at the end of the season, many were calling for Frazier's job anyway. The question was, "how could we give up 27 points to the Bengals at home?" Where was our top-rated defense?
Plays like this had us baffled:
The Bengals need 4 yards. Why in the world is the defense playing 8 yards off the receivers? It had people questioning what in the heck Frazier was thinking.
Some Bills fans thought Frazier was an all-star coach
Then there was the other half of the Bills Mafia that responded to Frazier walking away from the Bills saying, "Oh no!! There goes our dominant defense!" And it's fair to say that Frazier has had this defense humming through the regular season for a couple of years now. He's consistently got the Bills' defense in the top 5 of the league. For the 2022 season, the Bills were second overall in team defense only to the San Franciso 49ers.
It's Over For The Buffalo Bills
Brandon Marshall is a former NFL wide receiver and a current analyst/commentator on the league and he seems to think that without Frazier, the Bills are done. Without Frazier, it's over.
He credits Frazier himself with the success of that defense and although the scheme might still be different, it's the coach that gets the most out of the players.
Will The Bills defense actually take a step back in 2023?
It's not such a hot take to think that the Bills' defense will take a step back next year. But I would guess that it will be more about the players, than the coach. The Bills are up against cap issues this year and are possibly going to lose either if not both Tremaine Edmunds and/or Jordan Poyer and maybe some others.
My only problem with it is the timing. If he was going to walk away for a year, it would have been nice to have known that when so many of the defensive coordinators around the league were looking for jobs. But maybe he hadn't made that decision yet.
So which is it for you? Are the Bills going to see a decline in their defensive play without Frazier? Or will they actually be the same or better without him calling the defensive plays?