Bills

Offseason Needs: Buffalo Bills

1. Quarterback
The Buffalo Bills  have to end the carousel at quarterback. But is this the year? Geno Smith will likely be off the board before the Bills are on the clock, which would force them to reach to fill the need. Perhaps the right move will be to wait until the second or third round and bring in a low-risk prospect to compete with Ryan Fitzpatrick.

2. Inside Linebacker
The Bills need a new leader in the middle of the defense after a disappointing year by Kelvin Sheppard. This could be a position they try to fill with a veteran free agent. If they address it early in the draft, Alec Ogletree could fill the need in the first round. Arthur Brown could be a second-round target.

3. Right tackle
The Bills offensive line was much improved in 2012, especially on the left side with Cordy Glenn showing promise as their new franchise left tackle. But the ride side of the line still needs some work, and veteran Erik Pears may have to battle a rookie for the starting job. Dallas Thomas and Justin Pugh could be second or third-round options.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in Bills, Team Needs 1 Comment

Cordy Glenn to start at LT for Bills

The Buffalo Bills have named 2nd-round pick Cordy Glenn their starting left tackle, beating out Chris Hairston, a move which comes as a mild surprise.

This will be Glenn’s second year at the position after he transitioned from guard to tackle as a senior at Georgia. While he held his own at Georgia, many scouts believed his feet were too slow to handle left tackle in the pros.

Head coach Chan Gailey had this to say about Glenn’s performance: “Ability’s not the issue. It’s just playing time. He needs as much playing time as he can get. I think if he gets playing time he’s got a chance to be a really good football player.”

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in Bills, Rookie Notes Leave a comment

Cordy Glenn to play left tackle for Bills

The Buffalo Bills are planning to let 2nd-round pick Cordy Glenn compete for the starting job at left tackle, and began using him there this weekend at rookie camp. It’s an odd decision considering Glenn’s size (6’6″, 343 lbs) and his lack of athleticism. Most draft analysts, myself included, assumed Glenn would be shifted inside to guard or to right tackle.

Bills new left tackle?

This move raises more questions about the Bills strategy when it comes to the offensive line. Despite having significant holes on the line, especially at tackle, the Bills have ignored the position in recent drafts. Then just when Demetress Bell stepped with a reasonably solid performance in 2011 at left tackle, the Bills let him walk as a free agent.

For whatever reason, the Bills don’t value the offensive line position. It’s a unique strategy, but their their patchwork offensive line strategy has worked reasonably well so far. However, with a relatively immobile quarterback in Ryan Fitzpatrick, having a slow-footed rookie at left tackle could lead to disastrous results.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in Bills, Uncategorized 1 Comment

Draft Grades: Buffalo Bills

The Buffalo Bills were already having a strong offseason, highlighted by the addition of Mario Williams. And their 2012 draft class completes the process, and potentially makes them darkhorse contenders in the AFC.

The Bills reached for Stephon Gilmore. There’s no denying his potential, but he’s will need time to develop – more time than you’d typically expect from a top-10 pick. That said, I believe cornerback was one of their most glaring needs, and there was a fairly significant dropoff in talent at the position. If they felt this was an area they needed to address in order to compete in 2012, the reach was justified.

Cordy Glenn could be a steal in the 2nd round, but it depends where the Bills use him. He played left tackle this past season at Georgia, but is best suited to play right tackle or guard in the pros. If the Bills use him at left tackle, they’ll be missing an opportunity to maximize his skills.

T.J. Graham was a reach in the 3rd round. He’s more of a track star than a football player. He can stretch the field and potentially contribute as a return specialist, but his upside is limited.

Nigel Bradham is a developmental prospect but I like how he fits in Buffalo. He won’t be forced to play a significant role right away and can be brought along slowly.

I love the selection of Ron Brooks. He was stuck behind Morris Claiborne and Tyrann Mathieu this past year, but had the skills to start for nearly any other program in the country. His lack of experience makes him a bit of an unknown, but he played well in a nickel corner role at LSU and, at worst, should be able to fill that role in Buffalo.

Zebrie Sanders could be the Bills long-term answer at left tackle, but he isn’t ready for that role just yet. Ideally, they’ll keep him on the sidelines for a year, developing his strength and technique. But they’re desperate for help on the offensive line, which may force him into action.

Tank Carder lacks the measurables, but was extremely productive at TCU. He may never start, but should have a long career as a backup and special teams contributor.

Mark Asper may add some depth to the offensive line, but he’ll have to fight to make the final roster cuts. The Bills have no shortage of mediocre interior linemen.

The selection of John Potter doesn’t make much sense. Rian Lindell seems to be entrenched as the starting kicker and Potter is no better than any number of kickers who could have been picked up after the draft.

Overall, the Bills did a nice job of addressing needs without making many significant reaches. They also landed a few solid developmental prospects who could pay off a few years down the line. This may be Buddy Nix’s best draft class since coming to Buffalo.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in Bills, Draft Grades - 2012 Leave a comment