New Bills QB Coach is good news for…Brad Smith???

Chris Mortensen of ESPN is reporting that the Bills have hired Ole Miss offensive coordinator and former Dolphins QB coach David Lee to be their new QB coach.  You can see his resume at his Wikipedia page here.  He has been coaching offense since 1975 in college and the pros.  He coached under Bill Parcells in 2003 and 2004 with the Cowboys and was hired to Tony Sparano’s staff in Miami when Parcells took over there as President of Football Operations.

David Lee was the innovator of the wildcat offense in the NFL

Lee brought a new kind of offense to the quarterback position when he came back to the NFL in 2008 with the Dolphins – the wildcat formation.  He used Ronnie Brown behind center and ran an array of plays with Brown posing as the QB.  They’d run an option, they’d run a delay or a dive up the middle and sometimes they’d even run a pass by Brown out of the formation.  The Dolphins had smashing success with the formation in 2008 when they were the only team in the past 9 years besides the New England Patriots to win the AFC East with an 11-5 record.  The wildcat’s coming out party was in a game against the Patriots, who were undefeated in the regular season before, when the Dolphins went into New England and crushed the Patriots 38-13.  It was the first regular season loss for the Pats since the 2006 season.  Brown had a huge day out of the wildcat, scoring 4 rushing touchdowns on the ground and adding another one through the air.  Lee left the Dolphins after the 2010 season to become offensive coordinator at Ole Miss.

Brad Smith should get more looks in the wildcat next year

The guy who may be most influenced by this hiring is Brad Smith.  Smith was signed to a 4 year deal in the off season to give the Bills an extra weapon on the QB depth chart.  After a rule change got rid of the emergency QB (the 3rd QB active could only come in if the other two were injured before the 4th quarter) Smith was put in as the third QB for the Bills but could come into the game whenever they wanted him to.  After some early season success for Smith in the wildcat the WR depth chart was hit with injuries and Smith had to revert back to his old position with the Jets.  Early in the season he had 87 rushing yards on 20 carries and a TD.  You know that Gailey and co. didn’t bring Smith in to get twenty carries.  At his end of season press conference general manager Buddy Nix said that he thinks Brad Smith is a good 5th or 6th receiver and a wildcat QB and reiterated that they would make WR depth a priority, allowing Smith to go back to his wildcat duties.  The hiring of Lee only reinforces the fact that the Bills are committed to using Smith in the wildcat next season and for the rest of his contract.

It’s worth noting that Sparano, who went to the Jets to be their offensive coordinator, was wooing Lee to his offensive staff in New York.  Apparently the allure of working with Smith and Ryan Fitzpatrick was more than the desire to work with Mark Sanchez.  Lee will replace George Cortez as the Bills’ QB coach.  Cortez came from, and left to go coach in the CFL.   I think it’s an upgrade to the Bills coaching staff and shows dedication to utilizing the ground game in as many creative ways as possible.  Just think – a wildcat with Smith, Fred Jackson beside him, and C.J. Spiller in the slot would be very tough to defend.

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About evonsports
30 year old sports enthusiast and aspiring writer from Boston.

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