Josh Allen credits Phil Mickelson for finding inner ‘zen’ after win vs. Dolphins

11/01/2021
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Josh Allen and the Buffalo Bills’ offense struggled early against the Miami Dolphins’ defense. After a fourth-down attempt to get the Dolphins to jump offsides went sideways when Ron Torbert’s crew missed Jaelen Phillips jumping into the neutral zone, Allen was visibly frustrated not just at the missed call (and the intentional grounding called on the play) but at the severe lack of energy and answers that the Bills had a against the Dolphins in the first half of this game. 

However, coming out of the locker room into the 2nd half, there was a clear difference in Allen’s demeanor and he seemed much more composed. That calm energy clearly resonated with the team as they took the ball on their 2nd drive for 13 plays, 80 yards, including a 3rd & 15 conversion, for a TD. The offense made adjustments, and Allen simply looked more calm and in control during the 2nd half of this game. 

When asked about his Phil Mickelson-like energy, Allen mistakenly assumed he was being asked about his Halloween costume, as he was dressed as Phil Mickelson. When he finally understood the question, Allen explained that Mickelson spoke to the team and helped him become aware of his comfort zone when playing.

“I think it’s just self-knowledge, understanding who you are,” said Allen. “I know I don’t play well [when I’m] frustrated, and again, hearing that from a Hall of Fame golfer, one of the best of all time, to say that type of thing that resonated well with me, because that’s exactly kind of how I feel too, and it helped me today, and hopefully it’ll help me in the future too.” 

Sean McDermott was also asked about Allen’s Zen, and how that came from when Phil Mickelson talked to the team during training camp, and seemed to chuckle at the idea of Allen finding his “inner zen.”

“Yeah you know, I think Josh has his own relationship with Phil, where they have their own kind of volley that they’re doing back and forth with one another. But we were able to get Phil through Derek (Boyko) and his staff. Kevin Kearns was able to get Phil for a little bit for training camp and what a special moment that was for me, for our team, and an honor to get a guy of that stature to talk to your team, and it was a pretty cool half hour, 45 minutes for him to talk to our team for us.” 

Josh Allen has often been criticized and, at times, praised, for his erratic and unorthodox play style, which many people have believed to be attached to his intense competitive edge. Allen’s competitive nature is obvious to anyone who watches him play, but there is a balance that must be struck between that hero ball mentality, and not putting his team in bad situations, or letting his emotions get the better of him when things aren’t going his way. For him to acknowledge the importance of staying calm and focused in those situations shows another area where Allen has grown over the years, which is especially good to see after the Bills awarded him with a $250 million extension in the offseason. 

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