Inside The Bills

Potential key to run ‘D’

Posted by Chris Brown on July 17, 2013 – 9:33 am

The Bills run defense has not ranked better than 28th over the last four seasons. In three of the last four seasons it’s ranked 30th or worse. That figures to change in 2013 under new defensive coordinator Mike Pettine. As we outline in our Top 25 questions until training camp, the run defense should be much improved from it’s ranking of 31st last season. Pettine and his staff should certainly help, but there’s one key addition that could really help on the field.

Second-round pick Kiko Alonso is taking aim on the starting middle linebacker position and was all over the field making plays in the spring practices. It’s clear that head coach Doug Marrone has already recognized what Alonso could do for Buffalo’s defense.

“I see a player that’s very comfortable out there,” said Marrone. “Sometimes you look at someone and they’re bright-eyed and trying to get of sense of what’s going on around him. I see him coming in with a purpose and a willingness to compete for a starting position. He’s shown he has all the ability to play all three downs within the defense whether it be run, pass, nickel, sub, whatever it may be. We’re excited about seeing how he progresses, but again we’ll see if he can make the same type of growth he’s making now.”

Provided he lands that starting role, his play will be critical to Buffalo’s hopes to improve an area of their defense that has been sorely lacking.

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