1 – @ChrisBrownBills Where has Lavar Edwards lined up? OLB or DE?
Brett Triplett @BrettsterBills
CB: Edwards has lined up exclusively at defensive end through the OTA practices. I think while Edwards has the ideal height to play outside linebacker in a 3-4 system at 6-4, it’s apparent that Buffalo’s defensive coaches believe they have other options with better coverage skills to play that position. Plus Edwards is built in such a way where he can hold the edge in the run game pretty effectively as I see it. So where they have him lined up makes sense to me at this stage.
2 – @ChrisBrownBills how big of a role will Jonathan Williams have year one?
Mark Sciubba @MarkSciubbaDoe
CB: As I mentioned in a blog post earlier this week, I think Jonathan Williams can give Karlos Williams a run for his money as the backup behind LeSean McCoy. Watching his game tape from Arkansas the thing that impresses me most is his contact balance. Just the way he bounces off that initial tackler almost every time and keeps his legs churning for extra yards. I think his thick build fools opponents into thinking he’s just a downhill runner.
He can do that, but he’s also got some elusiveness and speed to pull away from people. Now he’s probably not outrunning some of the faster safeties in the league should he reach the secondary on a play, but he knows angles and has a more diversified skill set than people realize.
The last thing about him is he’s a driven person. He handles adversity very well so I think the challenge of Greg Roman’s voluminous playbook won’t be much of a hurdle for him. That should lead to competent and consistent play and will enable him to push for a bigger role than some might be anticipating from him in 2016.
3 – @ChrisBrownBills Which players are poised to become major team leaders this upcoming season?
Matt Williams @SportingGlasses
CB: I would put players like Preston Brown in that category as well as Sammy Watkins. Those two have embraced the added responsibility of leading not only by example, but vocally as well. In my mind Tyrod Taylor became a major leader last season.
4 – @ChrisBrownBills Do you think the Bills will continue to move Sammy around like they did vs the Jets? Or do u think its game plan specific?
CB: While the opponent is always a factor in how offenses make use of their most dangerous weapons, I would anticipate moving Sammy Watkins around to continue. It makes him harder to track, thereby making it more difficult for opposing defensive coordinators to stick to a specific plan designed to neutralize him.
5 – @ChrisBrownBills where do you think eric striker fits on this defense if he makes the team?
Ser Davos Seaworth @matt_faso
CB: I think inside linebacker is the only place where he can line up in this scheme. He’s not tall enough to play out on the edge at outside linebacker. If he makes the 53-man roster, knowing how effective he was as a pass rusher I wouldn’t be surprised if he was utilized in some subpackages as an overload rusher off the edge in obvious passing situations.
But he’s going to make this roster because he’s an impact player on special teams, which I believe is certainly in the realm of possibility.
Tags: Eric Striker, Fan Friday, Jonathan Williams, Lavar Edwards, Preston Brown, Sammy Watkins
Posted in Inside the Bills
They’ve been in Buffalo for less than 24 hours, but the Bills two newest defensive linemen have a week of cramming ahead of them to get ready for Sunday’s game against the Texans. DE Lavar Edwards and DT T.J. Barnes have gone from one team to another before, but having six days to have a game plan down knowing they might play on Sunday is a different task altogether.
“The toughest part is just getting acclimated to the system real quickly,” said Edwards. “Over the course of the season you get pretty much a whole year to become familiar with the playbook and everything that’s going on. Being in the situation that I’m in just pretty much jumping in having to kind of put that in overdrive and learn everything quickly.”
For Barnes the task is a bit less daunting. He played under head coach Rex Ryan, defensive coordinator Dennis Thurman and defensive line coach Karl Dunbar in a defensive scheme similar to the one Buffalo has now. The only problem is he’s spent the past year learning the Jets new defensive system under new head coach Todd Bowles.
“Two totally different defenses,” said Barnes. “I think it’ll be very smooth. I’m not a player who doesn’t study. So I take it very seriously studying my playbook so I think it’ll be a very smooth transition.”
Tags: Lavar Edwards, T.J. Barnes
Posted in Inside the Bills