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Bills Beat Blog

By Joe Buscaglia
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'Get there early, stay late' cliche applies to Bills' Watkins

It’s been nearly a month since the Buffalo Bills traded their 2015 first and fourth-round picks to have the opportunity to select wide receiver Sammy Watkins with the fourth overall draft choice. It’s only one month and it must become a trend throughout the season, but Watkins is doing everything early on in his power to become great in the NFL.

During rookie minicamp, it was noted that Watkins stayed after practice to catch some passes to work on his craft, but that’s not even the half of it. It’s certainly a cliché that players use but don’t always follow up on, but one month in the rookie wideout is getting to team facilities early, and staying late to get the most out of his day.

“Here, you get in early. It's your job now,” Watkins said of being a professional as opposed to college. “If you're taking it seriously, you're trying to be great and be the best at your position in the NFL, you need to be here early.”

Still 20 years old for the next week (he turns 21 on Saturday, June 14), the maturity seems to be in order for a potential standout at his position. That’s half the battle, and it’s also about what you do with your day to try and get a leg up on the rest.

Watkins described his typical day during offseason workouts, rookie minicamp and now into organized team activities.

“Around six o'clock AM,” he replied to the query of when he gets in the building each day. “I be here all day. I don't leave until about, I'd say, four or five-ish. Watch extra film with coaches, stretch out, drink your milkshakes, eat right and that's about your day. You go home and stretch out, eat again, follow your schedule, eat again and by nine o'clock, ten o'clock, you're in the bed.”

When he initially gets to One Bills Drive, Watkins goes through a series of stretching, eating, watching his individual cut-ups and going over the playbook all before the normal practice time of 10:30 am. He also understands the difference between repetition in exercise and valuable time spent in one important aspect of the off-the-field preparations.

“You don't want to watch too much film because you're gonna have good and bad on there -- which is good when you're watching with the coach,” Watkins noted. “With yourself, you don't know what you're correcting really right now. All you can do is go out there and play fast. But, I can study the details of the film, watch other guys and what they mess up on and myself, and just try to correct it the next day.”

No games have been played and no padded practices have been conducted, but it’s hard to argue for a much better start out of a highly touted and a heavy investment caliber of player. It will just be up to Watkins to keep up a similar work ethic when he finds his footing in the area and the Bills are into their regular season.

Twitter: @JoeBuscaglia

**Photo courtesy of the AP​

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