With less than a week away from the 2012 NFL draft, the Buffalo Bills will look to add more excitement to an already surprisingly exciting off-season.
The Bills signed highly sought after free agent, defensive end, Mario Williams and also added a solid veteran at defensive end as well, with the signing of Mark Anderson. The buzz around Buffalo, NY was at a constant high with the signings and until recently the draft was almost a second thought. Now with the draft approaching, the buzz of excitement is back, as fans all begin to ponder what the Bills will do with their picks.
They will be selecting number ten overall in the first round, and with numerous holes to fill, the Bills could go many different routes with their first selection. I would say the Bills biggest needs are at CB, OL, LB, and WR, but after hearing Buddy Nix’s at the Bills Draft Party Luncheon, I would assume that CB is their biggest priority for the first round. Morris Clairborne is considered by most, the best corner available, and is predicted to be off the board by the time the Bills selection rolls in. Stephon Gilmore from South Carolina and Dre Kirkpatrick from Alabama are the next best after Clairborne, and barring Wideout Justin Blackmon from OSU falling to number ten, I imagine the Bills will select either Gilmore or Kirkpatrick. The Jaguars at pick number 7 are in desperate need for a corner so they could easily determine who the Bills take if they choose to take Gilmore or Kirkpatrick. Experts predict Jacksonville taking Gilmore, meaning I believe the Bills will take Dre Kirkpatrick. At 6’1″ and 185 lb. and with decent speed with a 4.51 40-yard dash time, Kirkpatrick seems to fit in Dave Wannstedt’s model of a cornerback. He has potential to be that shut down corner that the Bills desperately need and have tried to get for many years.
The second round is where I feel the Bills will address the wide receiver position, filling a need to play opposite Stevie Johnson. Justin Blackmon, the best available wide out will most definitely be gone when the Bills select at number fourty-one in the 2nd round, but good depth at wide receiver in this years draft will ensure that the Bills can pick up some talent that can play right away with this selection. Michael Floyd from Norte Dame, Kendall Wright from Baylor, Stephen Hill from Georgia, will all most likely go in the first round or atleast early second. The Bills, if going the route of wide receiver will most likely have a chance at either Ashon Jeffery from South Carolina, Rueben Randle from LSU, or Brian Quick from Appilachian State. I could see Jeffery going early second round so my guess is wideout Randle from LSU. At 6’3″ and 210 pounds, Randle is a big target that could really compliment Stevie Johnson. He isnt the fastest wide out, but does have the ability to get open do to his great route running capabilities.
Round three the Bills should be able to address the offensive line need, although they are confident with Chris Harriston at left tackle, the loss of Demetrius Bell has left a hole with depth at left tackle. James Brown from Troy at 6’3″ and 306 pounds seems an obvious choice if he is still available. He started all 38 career games for Troy, has an incredible reach of 34.5 inches, and also came in for a visit to One Bills Drive, which tells me that the Bills would love to take him, if he is still on the board with the 71st pick in the draft.
The Bills have already showed this off-season that they want to win and they want to win now, so this up and coming draft can really help them accomplish those goals if the Bills have a good draft. The Bills 3 biggest needs, CB, WR, and OL can all be addressed in the first 3 rounds, and all the above mentioned prospects all can come right in and make a difference. The Bills finally seem to be on the right path and as a fan it is tru