Bills QB Josh Allen Becomes More ‘Verbal’ Leader Amid Roster Renewal

Bills QB Josh Allen Becomes More ‘Verbal’ Leader Amid Roster Renewal

NFL franchises often rely on their quarterbacks to be their leaders on and off the field, simultaneously serving as offensive engines on game day and leaders in the locker room in addition to being their “face” in the community.

Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen ticks all those boxes. Not only is he one of the NFL’s best passers (he’s the only player in league history to throw for 40-plus touchdowns in four consecutive seasons), he’s also a marketing dream, with national companies taking notice in recent years and featuring him in high-profile ad campaigns.

Josh Allen is a household name among American sports fans, a well-known figure that one cannot ignore when consuming sports-focused media. Allen’s teammates see a different But in the passer, they don’t see the mainstream superstar who appears in Gatorade commercials and dominates ESPN’s ticker tapes. They see a leader, a generally jovial and light-hearted person who knows when to tap into his “serious” side and lead by command and example.

Related: Bills linebacker deserves spot on All-Breakout Team despite already being released

His teammates have seen that side of Allen more frequently in offseason workouts, given Buffalo’s significant roster turnover this spring. The team parted ways with several cornerstones throughout the locker room, with center Mitch Morse and receivers Stefon Diggs and Gabriel Davis the most important offensive contributors. The Bills have supplemented those departures with young players, particularly at receiver, with third-year wideout Khalil Shakir, free agent Curtis Samuel and second-round draft pick Keon Coleman expected to lead the way in the receiving corps.

Allen, according to Buffalo offensive tackle Dion Dawkins, has become a more vocal leader as he helps the team’s revamped offense adapt and reach the standard the Bills have set in recent seasons. Dawkins spoke about his quarterback during a recent appearance on The Herd with Colin Cowherdpraising his leadership ability.

“Josh is one of those guys who will do what he needs to do in that moment,” Dawkins said. “He’s really vocal when the moment comes. In fact, I’ve seen Josh bark a lot more in those OTAs where he’s been very, very verbal, because we’re a different team. We have young guys that when they come in, they see a little bit of success and they can change. Josh does exactly what he needs to do.”

Josh Allen Dion Dawkins

December 19, 2020; Denver, Colorado, USA; Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen (17) celebrates with teammates Dion Dawkins (73) and Jon Feliciano (76) after the game against the Denver Broncos at Empower Field at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Troy Babbitt-USA TODAY Sports / Troy Babbitt-USA TODAY Sports

As a steadfast left tackle and three-time Pro Bowler, Dawkins’ opinions about the organization should always be treated with credibility, but his thoughts on Allen, particularly his growth, carry a bit of weight. more Dawkins’ weight is significant given that he’s been with the quarterback his entire career. Dawkins was a second-year player when the Bills traded up to select Allen in the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft. In fact, Dawkins’ emergence as a rookie gave general manager Brandon Beane the confidence to include Cordy Glenn in a pre-draft trade that better positioned the club to move up on draft day.

Dawkins has watched Allen evolve from an athletically gifted but generally raw player to an objective superstar, and as such, few can speak more credibly about his changes from year to year. The offensive lineman who has noticed his quarterback taking on a more vocal leadership role should give the Buffalo faithful confidence that Allen is doing everything he can to keep the offense from stuttering in the face of turnovers.

Get free Bills coverage from Buffalo Bills on SI