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Remembering Kent Hull

Kent Hull was one of the smartest, most decent and accommodating players I've dealt with during my 20-plus years in Buffalo. During the Super Bowl years, Hull was a dependable source of wisdom on a team of amazing athletes and characters. You could always count on Kent for insight into the team and the game. He wouldn't rip anyone or say anything controversial, but he provided perspective and intelligence and you almost always used his comments prominently. It was the unvarnished truth.

We called him our go-to guy. That's a designation reporters use for athletes who can always be relied on for a solid quote. We even had Kent Hull moratoriums. If you thought you had been using Kent too much, you took a week off and went to other players for the money quote. To this day, we talk about Hull in the locker room. The other day, George Wilson was surrounded on Media Day. A couple of veterans were off to the side. One of them told me, "I'm on a Senator Moratorium."

Every so often, an athlete will become a popular source for quotes in the locker room. We'll wonder, is he moving up to Kent Hull level? All I can say is there will never be another one like him.

Hull was also a great player, of course, the axis of that no-huddle offense. Tom Bresnahan, who coached offensive line and then was coordinator in those years, once told me Hull was the best center ever to play. He said no one else could have handled the responsibility of being the center for the no-huddle in those days. He had to make the line calls, identify blitzers, tell Jim Kelly when a play wouldn't work. He was also a terrific pass blocker and a fine run blocker in space.

I'll have more as the day goes along. Just had an amazing interview with Darryl Talley. Not surprisingly, Talley was the first one to call. He was very emotional last night and we decided to wait until this morning to talk. I'll post that later. I also found quotes from an interview with Hull in August of 1996, before his final year with the Bills. I'll post some of those, too.

Tomorrow, I'll have a column on Hull in the News.

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