Inside The Bills

Some Ryan, Whaley draft history

Posted by Chris Brown on April 28, 2016 – 3:07 pm

With round one of the 2016 NFL draft tonight we thought we’d take a look back at the first round picks of the two organizations where both Rex Ryan and Doug Whaley worked prior to teaming up in Buffalo.

Whaley was a pro scouting coordinator for Pittsburgh (1999-2009) while Ryan was head coach with the Jets (2009-2014). How much say each of them had in who was ultimately selected is debatable at best. Still, here’s a look at the first round picks of those organizations during their tenures with those respective clubs.

Jets 1st round picks with Ryan as head coach
2009 – QB Mark Sanchez
2010 – CB Kyle Wilson
2011 – DT Muhammad Wilkerson
2012 – DE Quinton Coples
2013 – CB Dee Milliner, DE Sheldon Richardson
2014 – S Calvin Pryor

Three out of seven picks were defensive linemen and three out of seven were defensive backs.

Steelers 1st round picks with Whaley on staff 
1999 – WR Troy Edwards
2000 – WR Plaxico Burress
2001 – NT Casey Hampton
2002 – G Kendall Simmons
2003 – S Troy Polamalu
2004 – QB Ben Roethlisberger
2005 – TE Heath Miller
2006 – WR Santonio Holmes
2007 – LB Lawrence Timmons
2008 – RB Rashard Mendenhall
2009 – DT Ziggy Hood

Three out of 11 picks were receivers. Two of 11 were defensive linemen.


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Andre Reed with advice for draft choices

Posted by Chris Brown on April 28, 2016 – 12:43 pm

He’s a former fourth-round pick and Division II college player, and all he did was make seven Pro Bowls, win four AFC titles and get inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Reed, who made an appearance recently on a Tampa radio station (WDAE) offered some advice to the prospects who will essentially be starting their pro careers tonight.

“I would say that everybody has an opportunity and it’s up to the prospect to take the opportunity they’re given and then make it even better,” said Reed. “They drafted you for a reason. They think there’s something about you that’s going to make their franchise better and you have to go out and prove that regardless of what round you were drafted in. A lot of kids don’t listen and to play in this league for a long time you have to be able to take instruction every day. It can be tedious and monotonous, but it’s your job now and that’s the way you’ve got to handle it.”


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Late riser at safety

Posted by Chris Brown on April 28, 2016 – 11:42 am

The NFL draftniks call them late risers. The truth is they were probably high on the board for most NFL clubs already and the draftniks are just late to the party. That being said there is one safety in this year’s class who is meriting strong consideration early on day two, who wasn’t getting much publicity.

Clemson S T.J. Green is a defensive back with elite measurables. That alone will have a player in the conversation at the high end of the draft provided he demonstrates either good football instincts or quality production.

Green according to some scouts may not either in plentiful supply at this point in his career, with low production on the ball (1 INT, 4 PBUs in his career) and a knock on him being a step late with play recognition at times according to some NFL talent evaluators. Still, ESPN NFL draft analyst Mel Kiper says some NFL clubs can’t resist his physical skill set.

“I think Green is getting momentum because he’s an athlete,” said Kiper. “Anytime you have that ability that he does athletically and the range that he does, you talk about the height at safety being a negative. He’s 6’2 1/2″ – 6’3″ and 210 to run the way he did at 4.34 with a vertical at 36″ you’re going to go pretty high. You got all that athletically ability you figure to keep getting better and the improvements to keep coming in the NFL. That’s why he’s in that early to mid second round. I should say late first, but I’m saying more early to mid second.”

Another thing to consider is at 6-2 1/2 he might be viewed as a hybrid safety/linebacker candidate who could make a transition similar to Mark Barron and Deonne Buchanon in the NFL.


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The top 5 players mocked to the Bills

Posted by Chris Brown on April 28, 2016 – 10:51 am

We’ve been bringing you installments of the mock draft picks taking place for the Bills through a vast number of media outlets online over the last couple of months. Our final mock draft watch went up on draft day number one this morning. Below is a compilation of the most common picks for Buffalo for their first round selection at 19.

Here are the top five most popular selections for Buffalo at 19th overall by mock draft pickers.

DL Robert Nkemdiche – 18
DE/OLB Noah Spence – 15
LB Darron Lee – 11
DL Sheldon Rankins – 11
DL Shaq Lawson – 11

While I believe each of the last three are realistic picks for Buffalo, I don’t have a lot of confidence that Rankins or Lawson will still be on the board when the Bills are on the clock. Even Lee is a maybe to be there at 19.

Most people who follow the draft know there are off the field concerns and some on the field issues with Robert Nkemdiche and off the field stuff with Noah Spence. Whether that pushes them out of the first round completely remains to be seen. Both are very talented and without some character background issues they’d be sure fire first-round picks. I just wouldn’t be surprised if they’re not part of the discussion in round one for the Bills or a host of other teams due to risk.


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Mayock weighs in on Jets at 20

Posted by Chris Brown on April 28, 2016 – 9:22 am

The Bills have division rival Miami up ahead of them on the board at 13, but the bigger concern is the Jets, who sit right behind them at 20 in round one of the draft.

Most of the speculation surrounds whether or not the Jets would sit at 20, and whether or not they’d take a quarterback early knowing their contract negotiations with Ryan Fitzpatrick remain unresolved. They have a major bargaining chip in Muhammad Wilkerson, who was franchised, but is also at odds on a long-term agreement with the club.

NFL Network’s Mike Mayock offered his two cents on the possible options for the Jets if they stay at 20.

“It’s interesting because I think even if they sign Fitzpatrick, I don’t know how long a term they’d be talking about,” said Mayock. “He’s 34 years old. Is he the long-term answer for Maccagnan and Bowles? So I think they’ve got to be evaluating the heck out of Paxton Lynch, and I think Paxton Lynch makes a ton of sense there, especially if they had a veteran quarterback he could sit behind for one year. So I think Paxton Lynch has to be the first consideration.

“Are we going to try to be in the ballpark or in the game for that kid? That’s to me first and foremost. After that you start to look around at 20 and say, ‘Okay, is our edge linebacker need going to — are we going to get a better player at edge linebacker or an offensive lineman? (Left tackle) Ryan Clady has had a history of injury; (Nick) Mangold is 32; (Right tackle Breno) Giacomini is 31. That offensive line needs some attention.

“I think when you get to 20, you’re looking at your board, and you’re going, ‘Okay, what do I like here? Do I like Ryan Kelly? Do I like Taylor Decker? Who’s the top edge rusher? How do I feel about Shaq Lawson or Emmanuel Ogbah? Can I go in the second round and get an offensive tackle, or do I want to get a tackle in the first round and get an edge guy?’

“If so, I think there’s a big conversation here, and I think the corners, which I haven’t even mentioned, also kind of fit into that thing, and depending on how they feel about Dee Milliner and his future.”

For what it’s worth I have the Jets taking Lynch at 20th overall a pick after Buffalo in my mock draft, but it’s likely that Lynch comes off the board prior to that point. That would necessitate a trade up for the Jets, which could happen if there’s a team interested in paying big money to Wilkerson.


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Prospects attending 2016 NFL draft

Posted by Chris Brown on April 27, 2016 – 3:59 pm

For those that may not have seen it, here are the 25 confirmed NFL prospects who will be in attendance in Chicago for the 2016 NFL draft.

1) Apple, Eli CB Ohio State
2) Bosa, Joey DE Ohio State
3) Butler, Vernon DT Louisiana Tech
4) Coleman, Corey WR Baylor
5) Conklin, Jack T Michigan State
6) Decker, Taylor T Ohio State
7) Doctson, Josh WR Texas Christian
8) Dodd, Kevin DE Clemson
9) Elliott, Ezekiel RB Ohio State
10) Goff, Jared QB California
11) Hargreaves, Vernon CB Florida
12) Jack, Myles LB UCLA
13) Jones, Chris DT Mississippi State
14) Lawson, Shaq DE Clemson
15) Lee, Darron LB Ohio State
16) Neal, Keanu S Florida
17) Nkemdiche, Robert DT Mississippi
18) Ragland, Reggie LB Alabama
19) Ramsey, Jalen CB Florida State
20) Reed, Jarran DT Alabama
21) Robinson, A’Shawn DT Alabama
22) Stanley, Ronnie T Notre Dame
23) Treadwell, Laquon WR Mississippi
24) Tunsil, Laremy T Mississippi
25) Wentz, Carson QB North Dakota State


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Bills 2016 Draft Special airs tonight

Posted by buffalobills.com on April 27, 2016 – 2:34 pm

Bills fans,

Tune in tonight for the Buffalo Bills 2016 Draft Special, presented by New Era. The show segments will air on buffalobills.com, as well as on WKBW Channel 7 at 7 p.m.  The Voice of the Bills John Murphy will be joined by Bills Insider Chris Brown and Bills Wall of Famer Steve Tasker. We’ll take an in-depth look at this weekend’s NFL Draft, and break down some of the players the Bills may select with their first pick.

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General Manager Doug Whaley will also join and give us his thoughts on whether Buffalo will use a pick on a quarterback this year. We’ll pull back the curtain and give you an exclusive look inside the new state of the art draft room, where Buffalo’s front office will make their decisions on draft day, and look at some prospects in the later rounds that might make an impact on the roster.

To cap things off, we’ll provide you with predictions on who we think the Bills will take in the first round.

Don’t miss the Buffalo Bills 2016 Draft Special!

 


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Host of kicker prospects in draft class

Posted by Chris Brown on April 27, 2016 – 2:06 pm

It’s been widely described as a bumper crop of kicker prospects. There’s no debating that Florida State’s Roberto Aguayo is at the top of the list, but there are a handful of quality place kickers this year.

ESPN NFL draft analyst Mel Kiper provided a quick synopsis of some of the better prospects.

“In terms of the kickers he’s the number one kicker,” said Kiper of Aguayo. “He would’ve had a higher grade last year, but he had some misses this year and was more accurate last year, so he wasn’t graded as high as he would have been. He’s the number one kicker. Zach Matics of Appalachian State is right in there. Brad Craddock from Maryland. Ka’imi Fairbairn from UCLA. Jaden Oberkrom from TCU. Ross Martin from Duke. There’s a lot of kickers that have ability this year, but I think he’s the best of the group. I’d say probably third to fifth round for Aguayo.”

As many as four kickers could be selected in the draft this year. Aguayo, Fairbairn, Martin and Liberty’s John Lunsford have the best chance of being drafted.


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Watkins embracing leadership role

Posted by Chris Brown on April 27, 2016 – 1:52 pm

He got a feel for it late last year when he witnessed how a team that allowed dissenters voice negative opinions compromised a team’s success on the field. Sammy Watkins vowed to be part of the solution and take on more of a leadership role in 2016. The time to lead is now for the third-year receiver and he’s committed to being vocal in Buffalo’s locker room.

Watkins spoke with NFL Player Engagement about the new role he is willingly taking on while also sharing how his family will be living with him in Buffalo during the season.

“I know now I have to be a leader, I have to speak up more,” said Watkins. “For a couple years I didn’t talk to nobody. And that’s with dealing with a new coach (Rex Ryan) and foundation. I was quiet, really didn’t do anything but work hard and try to make as many plays as I could. And now it’s more vocal and really stepping up to be a leader.

“And I try to do lot of things in the community because this is now my home. My family’s here (longtime girlfriend Ta’La and their daughters Samiah, 2, and Azaria, 1) and I’m enjoying it. I do a lot of things with my babies and my girl and try to have fun with my family. I’m more so of a homebody than anything.”


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Mayock on where he sees the OT run in draft

Posted by Chris Brown on April 27, 2016 – 11:03 am

As we’ve seen in past NFL drafts, there are often runs on a position at a certain point in the draft where all of a sudden there are three players at the same position taken in the span of five picks, leaving a team just outside that range out of luck. Offensive tackle is a position that could have up to five players come off the board in round one. So if a team really wants one there won’t be a whole lot of opportunity to wait.

NFL Network draft analyst Mike Mayock speculates that the run on offensive tackles will happen around the middle of round one.

“If Stanley and Conklin are off the board (before the middle of round one), as they probably will be, Taylor (Decker) is probably next. I think he’s going to go right in that range. Indianapolis is at 18, they could use a tackle. Germain Ifedi from A&M who is both a tackle and a guard is in the conversation in the first round. Then in the second round I think the conversation starts with Jason Spriggs who could even go late one, but I’ve got him in two. Le’Raven Clark from Texas Tech who has the wing span of a pteradactyl, that is seven offensive tackles, and that’s about average for the first two rounds of the NFL Draft, and I think they’re the right guys.”

Offensive tackle is a potential option for Buffalo at 19 if they don’t like what’s there for a front seven defensive player in terms of value, but based on Mayock’s analysis none of the top four offensive tackles will still be on the board at 19. If that proves to be the case, it’s very likely the Bills explore their options to trade back.


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Picking fits for Bills

Posted by Chris Brown on April 27, 2016 – 10:33 am

The film room junkies and number crunchers at Pro Football Focus have picked what they believe are the best scheme fits for the Bills and the league’s 31 other clubs for each of the first three rounds of the 2016 NFL draft.

Their picks for Buffalo are interesting as there is a heavy O-line  and linebacker focus throughout their choices. Here’s a look at their perceived fits.

Round 1 (19th overall)

Jack Conklin, OT Michigan State

Conklin is a dominant run-blocker who should thrive in Buffalo’s power scheme, and he’s no slouch in pass protection, either, allowing only 25 pressures the last two seasons. Conklin can slide in as the Bills’ starter at right tackle and be an immediate upgrade over incumbent starter Seantrel Henderson, who has an awful minus-46.8 overall grade in his first two seasons.

Cody Whitehair, G Kansas State

Whitehair was the highest-graded OT in the FBS last season, but he projects as more of a guard at the next level. Regardless of where he ends up slotting in, however, the right side of the Buffalo line needs help at either spot.

Leonard Floyd, DE/OLB, Georgia

Floyd was our highest-graded 3-4 OLB last season, and he also led the group in pass-rushing grade. The Bills need an edge rusher to pair with Jerry Hughes, and Floyd is one of the best in the class.

Round 2 (49th overall)

Su’a Cravens, LB USC

Cravens played both safety and linebacker at USC (but is probably more linebacker than safety at the next level) and would provide Buffalo with a dynamic chess piece on the defensive side. Cravens is strong against the run — his run-defense grade in 2015 ranked seventh among safeties in this draft class, and his run-defense grade in 2014 was tops among the same group. He also has sound instincts in coverage.

Joshua Garnett, G Stanford

Garnett was our second-highest-graded guard in the class in 2015, and his run-blocking grade was tops among the group. Garnett is a devastating pull blocker who is excellent at locating defenders while on the move. He has the potential to be one of the league’s best run-blockers in Buffalo’s scheme.

Scooby Wright III, LB Arizona

Wright was second among all FBS linebackers in 2014 in overall grade, and he should step into the league and be a force against the run. He has innate instincts against the run, is always balanced and under control, and has NFL-caliber lateral quickness. Preston Brown and Nigel Bradham combined for a very poor minus-32.3 run-defense grade for Buffalo in 2015.

Round 3 (80th overall)

Kyler Fackrell, DE/OLB, Utah State

Fackrell has the versatility that should fit well with Buffalo’s 3-4 scheme. He has excellent hands as a pass-rusher and he also dropped into coverage 192 times last year and finished the season with a positive coverage grade. 

Kamalei Correa, DE/OLB, Boise State

Correa is an athletic, slippery rusher who wins with movement over hands and strength. He possesses good closing speed and should be able to track down QBs along with backs and receivers in space. He frequently played with his hand on the ground at Boise State, but projects as a 3-4 outside linebacker in the NFL.

Kyle Murphy, OT, Stanford

After the top tier of tackles come off the board, there is nobody in this class who has a higher floor than Murphy. He is technically sound with his punch and he keeps his hands high and tight in pass protection. He isn’t the most athletic prospect in the draft, but his consistency and technique should allow him to become a competent starting NFL tackle.

Personally I don’t believe Floyd or Conklin will be on the board at 19 for Buffalo in round one. I think Scooby Wright is graded too high here. I do like each of the third-round options they’ve chosen though.


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Bills rank high in recent draft value history

Posted by Chris Brown on April 26, 2016 – 1:19 pm

Whether it’s draft pick value over the past three years or the past five years, the Bills are one of the few teams in the NFL who sit above the trend line. Though it hasn’t translated into playoff football yet, that is a good thing. Sooner or later their successful draft practices will allow the Bills to reap rewards.

According to Rotoworld’s examination of the past five years of drafting by NFL clubs and the past three years of drafting, the Bills are one of a handful of teams that exceeds the average in terms of the average value per pick made.

Here was Rotoworld’s assessment of Buffalo’s recent draft history.

The teams that appear above both trend lines are Carolina, Minnesota, Buffalo, Dallas, Tampa Bay, Arizona, San Diego and the Rams. Even squeezing the time frame down to the past three years, Carolina still maintains the top spot in terms of AV per pick while making the fewest amount of total draft picks.

It’s hard to say that a team that hasn’t made the postseason since 1999 has been doing anything positive, but the Bills have done well in selecting viable NFL players.  Even with the selection of E.J. Manuel, Sammy Watkins,Stephon Gilmore and Marcell Dareus were the other first round picks made by Buffalo over the past five years and are arguably in the top tier of their respective positions. While Cordy Glenn, Preston Brown, Aaron Williams and Nigel Bradham aren’t yearly Pro Bowlers, they have played noteworthy ancillary roles for the team.

The club that trended the highest over the past five years was Seattle thanks to the drafting that landed them Russell Wilson, Bruce Irvin, Russell Okung and Bobby Wagner among others. However, over the last three years Green Bay prevails as the team with the best average value per draft pick made.


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Mayock: Have to be 3-down LB to go high

Posted by Chris Brown on April 25, 2016 – 2:22 pm

With the passing game growing with each passing year in the NFL the demand on defensive players has shifted in terms of priorities and that can negatively impact players at the second level in particular.

NFL Network draft analyst Mike Mayock believes there will be some linebacker prospects, who lacking the necessary coverage skills, will see their draft stock drop as a result.

“The NFL has been evolving the last four or five years more closely paralleling the development of college football,” Mayock said. “There’s been a blurring between the safety position and the outside linebacker. They’re almost becoming often the same kind of guy, fitting the same type of role.

“Then the inside linebacker, talk about an off the line, inside linebacker typically playing one or two downs. So the role has been diminished. Unless you’ve got a guy like Luke Kuechly. If you’ve got Luke Kuechly and Thomas Davis, now you’ve got a different conversation, but because of nickel and dime packages, the role of the inside linebacker has evolved. So in a lot of cases, unless the guy can play on third down, his value has moved down.”

One of the most debated ILB prospects is Alabama’s Reggie Ragland. There are some clubs that believe he can play all three downs and handle certain coverage responsibilities, while others see him as a two-down prospect.


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Pro-style QBs exist in 2016 class

Posted by Chris Brown on April 25, 2016 – 1:44 pm

Anyone who follows college football is wholly familiar with the explosion of spread offenses. It’s put a lot of NFL talent evaluators in a bind when it comes to projecting college QBs to the pro game knowing they’re not asked to do a lot of the same things at the position. But this spring there is at least a handful of quarterback prospects who ran pro-style systems in college.

ESPN Scouts Inc.’s Kevin Weidl broke down some of the more notable pro-style QBs in this year’s class.

“I think this is one of the deeper quarterback classes that we’ve seen, and there’s a lot of size who translate to the NFL level well,” said Weidl. “Pocket passers and guys that have come from pro-style systems. It’s getting more and more of these spread quarterbacks, but this year there are more of the Connor Cooks, Jacoby Brissetts, Brandon Allen from Arkansas, Kevin Hogan from Stanford, who have played in pro-style systems making pro-style reads and working from under center. That can give a prospect an advantage in terms of how quickly they can develop when they go to the NFL level.”

We profiled Connor Cook in particular with respect to his pro-style experience in Michigan State’s offense.


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Defensive players favored in Predict the Pick contest

Posted by buffalobills.com on April 25, 2016 – 12:43 pm

Bills fans,

Don’t miss your opportunity to predict who you think the Bills will select first in the 2016 NFL Draft!

predict-the-pick-story

Defensive players have been heavy favorites in the contest so far. Those who top the list include, Ohio State linebacker Darron Lee, Mississippi defensive lineman Robert Nkemdiche and Clemson defensive lineman Shaq Lawson. Other common picks include Alabama linebacker Reggie Ragland, and  Alabama defensive lineman Jarran Reed.

The Predict the Pick contest, presented  by M&T Bank, will remain open until Wednesday, April 27 at 11:59 p.m. Enter now for your chance to meet Buffalo’s first pick!


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U.S. Appeals court reinstates Brady suspension

Posted by Chris Brown on April 25, 2016 – 11:53 am

Per multiple reports a U.S. Appeals court has reinstated the NFL’s four-game suspension of New England Patriots QB Tom Brady for his alleged role in Deflate-gate. The ruling is not exactly a surprise as the court appeared to be leaning in favor of the league based on lines of questioning during initial proceedings.

The suspension was originally to be served by Brady for the first four games of the 2015 season for his alleged role in Deflate-gate when the majority of New England footballs used in the AFC title game against Indianapolis in January of 2015 were below the required air pressure under the rules of the game.

At this point if the suspension is in fact served in full starting with the first week of the season, the Bills would presumably not face Brady since Buffalo and New England square off in Week 4 this fall.

Most legal analysts believe this is the end of the road in the way of appeals for Brady to challenge the rulings in this case.


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Kiper-McShay mock goes DL, WR, DL for Bills

Posted by Chris Brown on April 22, 2016 – 2:46 pm

ESPN has found just about every way to put a mock draft together. This time they’ve got Mel Kiper and Todd McShay alternating picks through the first three rounds. Here’s who they’ve mocked to Buffalo at 19.

19. Buffalo Bills

Mel Kiper’s pick: Shaq Lawson, DE, Clemson

I’m a little bit surprised Lawson is still here. Not sure what Todd is thinking by not grabbing him for the Lions. Mario Williams won’t exactly be missed from a production standpoint, but the Bills need a pass-rusher, and this guy led college football in tackles for loss last year.

In round two, again it was Kiper making the pick for Buffalo.

49. Buffalo Bills

Mel Kiper’s pick: Michael Thomas, WR, Ohio State

Thomas has strong hands and a big frame; he can take some pressure off my clear No. 1.

McShay finally makes a pick in round three for Buffalo.

80. Buffalo Bills

Todd McShay’s pick: Maliek Collins, DT, Nebraska

After getting Lawson in Round 1, it’s time to address the interior of our D-line. Collins flashes the first-step quickness to penetrate and disrupt.


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Fan Friday 4-22

Posted by Chris Brown on April 22, 2016 – 12:46 pm

The last Fan Friday before the 2016 NFL draft. Let’s get right to your questions from email at AskChris@bills.nfl.net and on Twitter at @ChrisBrownBills.

1 – @ChrisBrownBills Are there any areas of concern that we’re overlooking when it comes to the roster? DL and QB are always talked about.

Jordan Hanson @iamthelegenddd

CB: If you’re looking for hidden needs so to speak I think OT, CB and safety are areas that could use some reinforcements. At tackle and safety you don’t know for sure what the future holds for Seantrel Henderson with his health condition and Aaron Williams in his comeback from a neck injury.

Jordan Mills re-signed, but has a one-year contract. So investing at offensive tackle would make sense.

Williams said himself he won’t know for sure if he can continue his playing career until he starts hitting in training camp. Adding a safety even later in the draft would be advisable to cover the organization in a worst case scenario with Williams.

Cornerback might be a position that draws eye rolls from fans, but with the loss of Leodis McKelvin and Ron Brooks, depth is an issue there even though they signed Corey White in free agency. So there is a good argument to add there as well.
2 – @ChrisBrownBills Are the top 3 picks most likely DL, LB, and QB on some order? #FanFriday

NFL Predictor @PredictingNFL

CB: While there is no debate that the Bills want to add to their talent base in the front seven on defense and have made no secret that they need to add a quarterback, to just blindly say those are likely to be their top three picks is foolhardy. The reason why is there’s no way to know what will be sitting on the board when they’re on the clock in any of the first three rounds.

What if there’s an early run on defensive linemen? Do they take one of the top four offensive tackles in round one? They could. What if some cornerback slips to them in round two, who they have with a first round grade? They would take him.

There are simply too many variables to say they’ll address these three positions in the first three rounds. In a perfect world that would be a very logical thought, but as you know that’s not how the draft works.

If the value isn’t right Doug Whaley is not going to force a pick at a need position, plain and simple.

 

3 – @ChrisBrownBills what would your reaction be to Darron Lee going 19?

James @jarbarian9

CB: I’d be very happy with that pick at 19. Lee is the new wave of linebacker teams need in the NFL. I think as long as your defensive scheme has a way to protect a linebacker like Lee from getting covered up you can maximize his playmaking value. He’d be a very solid pick there at a position that needs an influx of talent. Whether he’s still be on the board will be the big question.

 

4 – @ChrisBrownBills curious about this so called infatuation the bills have with Kevin Hogan, is there any truth to that and why?

Matt @mattgolden03

CB: I think people are reading way too much into what Doug Whaley said about Hogan about a month ago. Yes, he stated that he thought Hogan would be one of the most pro ready quarterbacks in the class. That is probably true. He played in a pro-style offense, ran a good number of plays from under center and had progressions that he had to read after the snap. Those three things alone will be completely new to most of this year’s quarterback prospects.

Now does that mean the Bills see him as a fit? Not necessarily.

My personal opinion is Hogan is not a fit for Buffalo. After watching him throw at the NFL combine he doesn’t appear to have the arm strength necessary to play in Greg Roman offense that likes to exploit defenses with over the top throws, usually to the boundary. The weather, most notably the wind in Ralph Wilson Stadium would also present a problem.

 

5 – Chris,

What Inside LB’s would be a fit for the Bills scheme in the draft. Do they need a more athletic  player next to Preston? Cravens from USC looks to be a great fit. What other names should we look for?

Josh

CB: Darron Lee is listed as an outside linebacker, but I think he could play the WILL inside. The question is whether he’ll still be on the board at 19. Most mock drafters don’t think so, but I’m hopeful. Cravens is even smaller than Lee, which worries me a bit in terms of being a linebacker fit.

I like Josh Perry a lot, Lee’s teammate at Ohio State, though he probably goes in round 2 or 3. He’s not quite as athletic as Lee, but man is he a reliable, consistent player. West Virginia’s Nick Kwiatkoski is another ILB to consider late on day two or early day three.


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Kiper: Cardale Jones needs a lot of time

Posted by Chris Brown on April 21, 2016 – 3:21 pm

He’s 11-0 as a starter, but he lost his starting job in 2015. That is the enigma that is the physically gifted Cardale Jones. The Ohio State quarterback is one of the biggest mysteries in the 2016 NFL draft, and ESPN NFL draft analyst Mel Kiper thinks the team that drafts has only one course of action in making the most of his talent.

“I think he needs a lot of time,” said Kiper. “I think you need to invest three full years in him. I asked Mark Brunell about this and he said in three years he was ready and by year four he was really ready. Think about Aaron Rodgers and those four years. I think Cardale Jones needs three full years to sit, watch, and learn.

“He’s 6’5 250 pounds. He’s got huge hands. He’s got the strong arm. He’s athletic. He can run. Think about last year with three games late in the year he would’ve been a second round pick I believe. Now going back, did it hurt him? Yes, in a round perspective, but in the long run it might help him. Yes he lost the job and now he might be a fourth or fifth round pick. He’ll be off the radar with a chance to develop and in three or four years , with the right quarterback coach, the right offense, and the right situation, maybe he can prosper down the road.”

How much of a project does Kiper think Jones is? In his opinion he doesn’t even think he can be a backup as a rookie.

“If you’re asking him to be a back up quarterback, fill a back up role and show a lot of promise, it ain’t going to happen,” he said. “You’ve got to understand what you’re dealing with here being a raw and undeveloped quarterback with limited starts and go from there. We’ll know a lot on draft day with what team he goes to and where he goes as to what opportunity he’ll have.”


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Whaley: QB class runs deep

Posted by Chris Brown on April 21, 2016 – 11:06 am

The general consensus on the 2016 NFL draft is that there are just two franchise caliber quarterbacks in this year’s class. Fortunately for Buffalo they don’t need a prospect that is starting caliber now, but one that could potentially develop into one. As Bills GM Doug Whaley sees it, QB prospects of that ilk run deep into the fifth or sixth round this year.

“I think it does. I’m really excited about that,” said Whaley in an appearance on the John Murphy Show. “These guys will definitely come in and push to be a number two. Maybe they tap out as a number two, but sometimes there are a couple of guys who come through and start performing like number ones. We’re excited about the depth at the quarterback position and since it’s a position of need for us.”

Whaley reiterated in the team’s pre-draft luncheon Wednesday that Tyrod Taylor is Buffalo’s starting quarterback no matter who they might draft or when next week.


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