AFC Notes: Leslie Frazier, Bills, Jets, Patriots


  • In an interview on the Pat McAfee Show, former NFL GM Michael Lombardi says Bills HC Sean McDermott wanted to take over the defensive play-calling this season and that didn’t sit well with former DC Leslie Frazier, which led to his exit from Buffalo. 
  • Lombardi added McDermott took over the defensive play-calling on the final drive during the Bills’ infamous loss to the Chiefs in the divisional round in 2021 when Kansas City tied the game despite getting the ball with just 13 seconds left. 


  • ESPN’s Rich Cimini notes the Jets will have four major competitions going into training camp at left and right tackle, center, and the third linebacker spot in the base defense. However, LT Duane Brown is all but cemented at that spot, so it’s more a question of the backups behind him and whether he can stay healthy. 
  • Jets OT Mekhi Becton will have an easier path to winning a starting job on the right side, though he has to fend off veteran OT Billy Turner and 2022 fourth-round OT Max Mitchell, per Cimini. 
  • Cimini says the center job is second-rounder Joe Tippman‘s to win, with the key to hurdling incumbent veteran Connor McGovern being the mental responsibilities of the position. 
  • Cimini mentions Jets LB Jamien Sherwood has gotten the bulk of the offseason reps at the third linebacker spot and is the frontrunner for the position but this is an area the team could address, including possibly resigning LB Kwon Alexander.
  • Jets DE Micheal Clemons bulked up from the 270-pound range into the 290s, per DC Jeff Ulbrich, as the team plans to play him more on the inside this season. Cimini adds Clemons has missed time with an undisclosed injury this spring. 
  • Jets HC Robert Saleh said adding weight and strength will be both a priority for first-round DE Will McDonald IV and something that’s a process through his rookie season. He’s listed at 6-3 and 241 pounds: “There are things from a developmental standpoint, all rookies go through it with regards to a little bit more size, a little bit more power. Developing the ability to run through tackles is always going to be the biggest thing for a defensive lineman, but I love where he’s at right now.”
  • Saleh noted Jets 2022 third-round TE Jeremy Ruckert dealt with plantar fasciitis as a rookie and seems to be over it heading into his second season. 


  • The Athletic’s Chad Graff notes Patriots RB Ty Montgomery‘s pass-catching skills could push him up the depth chart to the No. 2 role behind RB Rhamondre Stevenson.
  • Right now, Graff projects the team to keep just five receivers and he gives the edge for the final spot to sixth-round WR Demario Douglas over fellow sixth-round WR Kayshon Boutte and UDFA QB/WR Malik Cunningham. Graff thinks Douglas outplayed Boutte this spring, with the latter missing some time due to injury. 
  • Graff gives the third and final tight end spot to converted WR Scotty Washington, who was one of the standouts during OTAs. 
  • Graff mentions Patriots OT Riley Reiff seemed to struggle enough this spring that he was working with the second team at times, which is not a good sign for the season. 
  • Patriots DL Lawrence Guy could be a surprise cut amidst his contract dispute, per Graff, as the team would save $3.3 million by releasing him. 
  • Graff has noticed UDFA LB Jourdan Heilig getting one-on-one mentoring time with different coaches and Patriots STer Matthew Slater, which could help him snare a roster spot on special teams. 

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