BY NICK ST. DENIS
When things went wrong with Bills quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick last season, they could often be traced back to mechanics.
So Fitzpatrick spent most of his time in OTAs working on mechanics, specifically footwork, with quarterbacks coach David Lee. Fitz's focus is still in the same place as training camp begins this week.
"(Mechanics) are a big thing for me and something that fell off last year as the season went on," he told reporters Thursday. "We will be working a lot of drills while the special team stuff is going on. A lot of drill work. A lot of things that are really tailored to me for things that I need to improve at and get better at. That will be big.
"And always to have (Coach David Lee) in my ear on the sidelines during games and when we are breaking down practice and watching film. Just being able to have him there telling me ‘This is good’ or ‘This is not good’ -- even if it is a completion that did not have the proper mechanics."
Fitzpatrick started the 2011 season strongly but threw 16 interceptions to 10 touchdowns over the last nine weeks, including nine picks and just four touchdowns in his last four games.
Many of Fitzpatrick's interceptions were thrown in the direction of the right receiver, meaning he made the proper read. However, unsound footwork caused the ball to sail.
"I feel like I have improved. I think now knowing there is some sort of process and procedure that I need to follow when I am throwing, that is helpful," Fitzpatrick said. "That being said, we will see when we get into the preseason games and especially the regular season games, that is going to be the big test.
"To be able to, when the bullets are flying, be able to do it and be able to stick to the fundamentals that I have worked on all off-season. For me, that is what I have to stay on top of. And not just Week 1 or 2, but also towards the tail end of the season I have to have those mechanics sound. That is going to help me a lot with my consistency."
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