In under 4 years, Sean McDermott and Brandon Beane have formed a tightly-knit brotherhood of players. It’s clear to me that they are looking for a persona as much as a player. Beane is looking for character traits like being a teammate, being competitive, being task-involved, and having a solid work ethic. The information that you don’t see in highlight films or All-22s goes a long way in the evaluation process. I’m talking about the interviews behind closed doors. Or this year, on Zoom.
On Valentines Day (with my wife’s blessing; since for some reason she wanted to finish Bridgerton on Netflix) and the day after, I watched about 200 interviews on players the Bills are likely considering in several positional groups. What was I looking for?
As a learning specialist of 44 years and a school admissions test administrator for 28 years, I learned how to pay attention to more than the scores my tests were obtaining. In these press conferences and interviews, I watched body language, eye contact, body language, pursing lips, wringing hands, smiling when teammate or OL was mentioned.
I listened to the answer’s fit with the question. A few players had to ask to have the question repeated. Are they fully in the moment, or will they have difficulty with the details of a complicated offensive playbook? Are they task-involved or ego-involved? Were their eyes up trying to visualize, or down trying to hear themselves formulate an answer? Were their eyes moving left (right hemisphere/ visual) or left (left hemisphere/language)? Were they interacting with the interviewer as a fellow human being, or in their own little ego-bubble? Were they uncomfortable sharing the credit for their performance? Did they ever credit teammates, God, family, coaches for their results?
I found the spot in the interview where I saw something significant that spoke to their fit with The Process of the Bills. I also attempted to separate them into tiers. Here is the first of several articles on The Interviews — The Heart of The Process.
CLICK ON THE LETTER GRADE following the player name to hear the spot in the interview where I spotted something significant that spoke to their fit with The Process. Follow me on Twitter to convince me to show my an interview that should change my grade; I’ll consider it –This isn’t high school!
TEs, Arranged By Anticipated 40 Time
Bills’ TE Average=6-5—-257——4.64
(bold=scouted 2020 or 2019)
TIER 1: A+ Interviews
TIER 2: A Interviews
TIER 3: A- Interviews
TIER 4: B+ Interviews
TIER 5: B Interviews
Tony Poljan TE Virginia 6’7″ 255 4.72 — No Interview Available
Jordan Davis TE Louisville 6’4″ 265 4.75 — No Interview Available
Editor’s babble: Brilliant work by Dean, as always. Thanks to Dean Kindig for his tremendous contributions to our blog. You can find Dean on Twitter @TCBILLS_Astro.