Mafia Mavens celebrate Bills win over Cowboys, more ‘wyobabble’ why culture matters

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After nearly 20 years of preaching about culture and team chemistry on the Buffalo Bills Message Board (RIP) and Twitter, the Bills are finally showing the rest of the NFL why the intangibles matter. What actually makes the “whole greater than the sum of its parts” is a question I’ve grappled with for decades.

Just because you can’t measure something doesn’t mean it isn’t important or doesn’t exist. We are blessed to witness cutting edge changes Sean McDermott, Brandon Beane and Kim Pegula are making to build a successful NFL franchise.

Look no further than the $18M investment made to build THE state of the art NFL training facility at One Bills Drive. When you realize that’s less than some signing bonuses for one player, I’d suggest that’s a good investment. So far their injury reports this late in the season suggest they are on to something. Watch how fast other teams copy this model.

Tom Brady and his guru Alex Guerrero can claim they already have this type of program available for the New England Patriots players but it’s not an officially sanctioned program by the team and has dubious methodology not necessarily substantiated by science.

The Bills cleverly crafted the best of both worlds, complementary and traditional methods in a one of a kind facility designed to facilitate wellness, not just treatment for injuries. The results so far this season speak for themselves with minimal nagging injuries after trainers and players work together to formulate individual health and wellness plans.

This opens a ‘new era’ (pun intended) in Buffalo Bills history. Ownership investing in players health and happiness over a lifetime instead of the current model held by many owners in the NFL, where players are treated like commodities.

Mind you, it’s still strictly business with the Bills like any other team and they will make heartless decisions from time to time. But you cannot deny the difference in the way the Bills organization now focuses on player health and well being, even long after their careers in football ended.

Look no further than Sean McDermott being the first head coach since the 1990s to invite the Super Bowl stars in for dinner and pick their brains about how to create a winning culture. Nobody put it better than Janine Talley in terms of the payoff. Blunt and to the point. One of the many reasons we love her.

There you have it. From Mrs. OG herself. Any coincidence the team has outperformed expectations all three years under Sean McDermott (yes, 6-10 exceeded expectations last year when they cleaned house)?

Culture matters.

I’ll leave you with our latest Mafia Mavens podcast recorded after the victory over the Cowboys. @DanyelReneeBB and I discussed the big win, how it feels as a fan for the Bills to be 9-3 for the first time since 1996, the obligatory Josh Allen report and a few words about the upcoming game against the Baltimore Ravens.

The goal of our podcast is to produce interesting discussions about the Bills from a fan perspective. We often talk about the intangible aspects of football and offer our own (sometimes raunchy, sometimes obviously female) opinions about what’s going on in the NFL.

Please follow us on Twitter and give us some feedback! Thanks.

Editor’s babble: This episode was fun to do. Hopefully we’ll have more wins to talk about when the going gets tough these last four games. Thanks to my partner @DanyelReneeBB for producing a terrific podcast. You can also find me on Twitter @RobynMundyWYO if you’re looking for someone to blame.

About Robyn Mundy

Robyn Mundy is Editor-in-Chief of the BillsMafia blog at She's a retired oncology nurse & psychotherapist who loves to write about her life-long passion for the Buffalo Bills, and occasionally something of clinical or social relevance. Robyn lives with her husband Gary and their dogs in the foothills of the Big Horn Mountains in Wyoming. Robyn is also a proud founding sponsor. Follow her on Twitter at @RobynMundyWYO.