Doug Marrone and the Buffalo Bills coaching staff have been throwing the offensive playbook at quarterback EJ Manuel & Co. since the start of organized team activities three weeks ago. Now that the offense has been fully installed, the team looks to improve upon the foundation.
That work begins tomorrow with the start of mandatory minicamp, which runs until Thursday.
But for the moment, Marrone is pleased with the progress the offense has made.
"I'm happy about the ability that we have in our matchup potential now with what we're doing and the ability where we can put different players," Marrone said. "There are things now that we can do that we couldn't do last year. From that standpoint I'm happy."
While the defense seemed to have the upper hand over the offense during most of the OTAs, Marrone sees progress from his quarterback. Compared to this time last year, he said Manuel is much farther ahead.
"I'm excited," he said. "I think what had happened is that a lot of times you're looking for the end product and for end results. For us, we're looking for those steps for where he's going or what he's taking. Really when you look at the volume that we have in, which is really full scale everything right now, he's made a great amount of improvement of things that he didn't do as well last year."
Marrone added Manuel has been working more on his footwork and that "he's getting ready to take that next step."
"We've made a lot of improvements on the little things," Marrone said. "Our goal obviously was the trust and communication and I think I've seen that more from this team than in the past, which I'm proud of."
But ultimately if the players don't keep working, they will fall behind, he said.
"The main thing is just what I told them at the end, we can have all that stuff and go ahead and make these strides during this period of time, but if you don't retain it and you don't keep working on it, basically what you've done is flushed it down the toilet when you show up again."
The team has three days to make corrections until it has an extended vacation. After the final minicamp practice on Thursday, the Bills will be off until the start of training camp on Sunday, July 20 at St. John Fisher College.