Bills O-lineman Dion Dawkins is Buffalo’s big, fun adopted son

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Dion Dawkins can’t wait to get back to Buffalo. Even as he enjoys his offseason in Florida, the Buffalo Bills’ left tackle has his mind on the city that gave him his first NFL home in 2017.

He knows how that sounds, but doesn’t mind; people from Buffalo are built a little differently in terms of pride in their city, and after three years in western New York, Dawkins might as well be from Buffalo.

“The average person in the world would never understand,” he laughed. “Because who wants to leave Florida and go back to the shnow [more on this below] tundra of Buffalo? Only a true Buffalonian understands why. … But I miss my teammates and my coaches.2

Dawkins, 25, fits into the Buffalo community because he’s built differently, as well. He stands out — and not only because of his 6-foot-5, 320-pound frame. The Rahway, New Jersey, native has built a persona centered on his unique personality — through a series of catchphrases (“shnow” wasn’t a typo), merchandise, and even his own signature macaroni and cheese dish.

His magnetic demeanor has captured the attention of the teammates he can’t wait to see again.

“He’s so energetic, the way he talks to people. I envy that,” Bills right guard Jon Feliciano laughed. “I don’t have the energy for that, how does he do it? Kids love Dion … everyone’s kids I see on the team just run to Dion. He is so good at talking.”

Dawkins, a second-round pick in 2017 after being a four-year starter for Temple, has another reason to look forward to returning to Buffalo; he likely has a large payday waiting for him for the value he brings on and off the field.