Former Bills RB Roasts Ryan Tannehill for Not Wanting to Mentor Rookie

LeSean McCoy

Getty LeSean McCoy reacts to a play in a game against the New England Patriots.

Former Buffalo Bills running back LeSean McCoy is calling out Ryan Tannehill for his comments about not wanting to play the part of mentor for the team’s new rookie quarterback.

Tannehill spoke out after the Tennessee Titans selected Liberty quarterback Malik Willis with the No. 86 overall pick in last week’s NFL Draft, saying he doesn’t believe it’s up to him to mentor the rookie.

“We’re competing against each other, we’re watching the same tape, we’re doing the same drills,” Tannehill said on May 4, via “I don’t think it’s my job to mentor him, but if he learns from me along the way, then that’s a great thing.”

But many other former players, McCoy included, disagreed with that sentiment.

The latest Bills news straight to your inbox! Join the Heavy on Bills newsletter here!

Join Heavy on Bills!

McCoy Speaks Out

Not long after Tannehill’s remarks, the former Bills running back took to Twitter to share his own thoughts, explaining that teaching younger players is part of being a leader in the locker room.

“If you don’t want to mentor I get it but don’t call yourself a good teammate,” he tweeted. “If anything happens to you and he needs to replace you let’s pray he is prepared. Winning is the only stat that matters if you are a good teammate.”

McCoy certainly played that out during his own career. After spending several seasons as one of the league’s top running backs with the Philadelphia Eagles and then Bills, he accepted smaller roles with the Kansas City Chiefs and Tampa Bay Buccaneers that included the chance to help younger running backs develop.

As Jay Skurski of the Buffalo News noted, McCoy was valued as a leader in the Bucs locker room, and back Leonard Fournette said McCoy was a mentor to him. McCoy said it was a mindset he adopted immediately upon joining the Chiefs.

“That was tough at first, but over there, you have to check your ego,” McCoy said. “They have so many good offensive players. That kind of was like the stepping stone, so I was like, ‘If I’m not starting and I’m not playing, how can I affect the game?’ The best way I could do that was help the guys from my experience. Knowing where the reads should go, where the ball should go (and) how to become a better player. I put that from me into them.”

Varying Views on Tannehill

While some former players joined McCoy in criticizing Tannehill’s thoughts on playing mentor for Willis, others disagreed.

“This what yall fake mad about today?” tweeted Darius Butler. “Tannehill is 100% right here. He has ONE job. Be the starting QB for the Titans. If he chooses to mentor Malik Willis along the way that’s good on him; but by no means an obligation.”

Chiefs head coach Andy Reid also spoke out about his team’s famous quarterback succession, going from Alex Smith to Patrick Mahomes. Reid recalled that he told Smith to focus on his own game and let the coaches worry about Mahomes’ development.

As ESPN’s Turron Davenport reported, there is no immediate competition on the Titans as the team said the veteran Tannehill will be the starter this season.

READ NEXT: Former Bills QB Ryan Fitzpatrick Goes Shirtless at Frigid Playoff Win