Pro Football War Room

2015 NFL Draft - Mock Draft - Buffalo Bills Draft - Rankings

Bills at the Bye

Mike Watkins

@merk256

11/9/16

 

The Good


We Still haven’t watched the Bills at their best yet: The Bills have been ravaged by injuries to their top 10 and because of this we still have not seen the Bills at their best yet. If and when Sammy Watkins makes his return to the field he will add a dynamic to the offense that will drive opposing DC ‘s mad. Having to account for him and McCoy will give Bills opponents big problems. On the defensive side of the ball we have seen a glimpse of Dareus but he is yet again sidelined. That glimpse though was a very good one. He should be ready to go and in far better condition coming out of the bye

 

Progress: It started off a little shaky and there is still work to be done but Tyrod Taylor is making improvement and while some areas need to be shored up he is a QB the Bills can win with. He is very good at picking his spots with his legs and he is throwing more to the middle of the field than he ever did last year

 

Offensive Revolution: A lot of credit should go to Anthony Lynn for the 4 games the Bills have landed in the win column. He understands what to do with the personal he has. He has revitalized a stagnate run game into one of the best in the league. He is also getting the most out of Tyrod Taylor even when the Bills at one point were pulling people of the street to play WR

 

The DL: The Bills have found pieces that fit what they do this year and put in place a coach , John Blake, who is getting a lot out of them. The difference between this year and last year is striking. The Bills DL is talented, Deep, and diverse. The unit is a good mix of youth and vets which will lead it to be a strength for a long time

 

Gillislee: I was not happy when the Bills did not bring Karlos back but the play of Gillislee has made me rethink it. At this point Gillislee is a very good back up to McCoy. While their styles are similar he has shown that he is fully capable of carrying the load if need be. If the staff had trusted him more in Miami the Bills likely would have walked away with a victory

 

Shady: McCoy looks like the player the Bills thought they traded for. It is an absolute pleasure to watch him run. Every time he touches the ball there is a chance something electric might happen. It reminds me of the Thurman Thomas days.  

 

1st Rounder: Only two games in Shaq Lawson looks like a keeper. He has been as advertised thus far. He is solid against the run, shown that he can get after the QB, and is relentless every play. The Bills should be happy with what they have seen thus far from their top overall pick

 

Sack Leader: L.Alexander is not just a remarkable Bills story line he is a league story line. He has taken to this defense in an almost unimaginable way. At 33 years old he has found a defense that he fits perfectly into and the results are staggering. He has been the Bills defensive MVP and may end up being the defensive player of the year.

 

The Bad


We Still haven’t seen the Bills at their best yet: The Bills cannot get out of this injury funk they have been in for nearly a decade. While injuries do happen the Bills keep finindign themselves without their elite players for various reasons. At this point the Bills may never have all their elite talent available for even one game which will pose a problem

 

The Medical and Training Staff: Can you prevent broken bones and torn ligaments? No…You know what you can prevent and get better treatment on pulled hamstrings and groin muscles. I do not know how anyone can even defend the Bills medical and training staff anymore. They clearly underestimated the issues with Shaq Lawson’s shoulders. It is also clear that Sammy Watkins should not have even been on the field the first two weeks of the year. Now the Bills have had a series of preventable injuries to key players. It’s time the Bills take a hard look at how they diagnose, prevent, and treat injuries.

 

Safety Play: I have been banging this drum for 2-3 years now. The Bills safety play sans A.Williams is atrocious. Even C.Graham is average on his best day. The Bills have been trying to patch it together for years now and they are paying the price for it. A lot of these big plays given up are because of very poor play from the position. The Bills need to make a concentrated effort to improve the position this offseason

 

Reggie Bush: Why is he still on this roster? To date no one can convince me that booting him and signing back Karlos would have not have been the better play. Bush is giving nothing to this offense right now and is taking up a roster spot that could be used to literally give any other player that is younger with more potential a look

 

CB Play: This has been surprising since it was considered one of the positions the Bills could lean on before the season started. Darby and Gilmore have been very up and down. One issue that is being a little looked over is the loss of coach of D.Henderson. Both Gilmore and Darby were big fans of his and it looks like he is missed

 

Rex Watch

As it stands right now I cannot see a scenario in which Rex is fired barring the Bills losing out. At this point I think the Bills should stay the course for at least another year. Another change in the front office or at HC I think would set the Bills farther back then moving them forward. The defense still has some issues but Rex is getting the pieces that fit his puzzle now and its showing

 

Looking to the 2nd Half

I am not ready to call it a season yet. A lot can still happen between now and the last game. The Bills have shown that they have the ability to go on a hot streak. They will be getting reinforcements as the season goes along(Theoretically) and when that Happens I can see the Bills making a run and be the team that no one wants to play down the stretch. It will be an uphill battle and they will need some breaks to go their way but the teams has the talent to get it done

Thoughts on Week 6: vs San Francisco

Mike Watkins

@merk256

10/18/16


Reggie Who…: This whole Reggie Bush experiment has been fun but it’s time to let him go. He has brought nothing to the offense nor the team so far. I at one point thought he could possibly bring something as a slot WR but he cannot even seem to do that. It’s time the Bills drop him and move on


Run, Run,Run: McCoy for the second week in a row put his elite ability on display. When you give him even a sliver of an opening McCoy is going to make you pay. He is in the best condition of his career and he is making teams pay for it. McCoy and the running game are just on another level right now and the it just keeps getting better and better every week


The Forgotten Williams: Aaron Williams needs to start getting credit for his part in this defensive turnaround. He is playing some of the best football of his career right now. He has stabilized the secondary and is rarely out of position, which has been an issue when he has not been able to play


Continuity: The OL right now is showing the value of having the same 5 starters over a period of time. You don’t need to spend high draft picks year in and year out to get a dominate OL. You need 5 players who know how to work together as a whole and it will make up for the lack of physical talent some may have


Kromer and Blake: Both Coaches deserve to be heralded for the job they have done with their units so far. They are proving the value of being able to put together a quality staff. I’ve already mentioned the OL but the DL is playing just as well. Blake has taken Washington and turned him into an impact rookie. Bryant is playing very well and now we get to see what happens when the Bills get to rotate an elite talent that is Dareus into the fold


Peeks and Valley’s : Tyrod still goes through his ups and downs in a game but the downs are not going for as long as they previously were. He is able to get out of his funk faster now that he is using the whole filed more. This is a big step from last year where he would go whole half’s looking completely off


More Clay: I said it last week and I’ll say it again this week, the more Clay is involved the better this offense runs. By utilizing him where he is most effective, the middle of the field, it opens up so much more for the offense. It also keeps Clay more interested which in turn makes him a better blocker. It would be wise for the Bills to continue this trend against his former team this Sunday


Looking Ahead: Four straight wins is impressive no matter the opposing team. This, as many have stated is a game the Bills would have normally dropped in years past. Now they get a pair of AFC East teams over the next two weeks. They cannot look past Miami and I imagine they won’t with the likely return of Dareus and Lawson. Both players I imagine will be looking to join the defensive party. This will be a tough tight game for the Bills. They have dominated the Dolphins now for a while and the law of averages says they are due for a loss. They have to fight through it and not look ahead to a possible division lead show down with the Patriots

Thoughts on Week 5: vs Los Angeles

Mike Watkins

@merk256

10/11/16


-Have yourself a Year: Lorenzo Alexander earned a starting nod in camp and it looks like he is going to make it next to impossible to take him off the field. He has become the antithesis of everything Mario Williams was last year. Why he may not be as physical gifted the effort level play to play is not even close. Alexander is doing it while dropping into coverage and playing special teams. Pretty clear now what the problem was last year as Mario has faded into a sure to be cut after the season role in Miami


Run, Run,Run: The Bills ran early and often on Sunday and it was really a no brainer. The OL completed destroyed an overmatched Rams DL missing 3 of 4 starters. Still the OL is getting better and better every week and is starting to push the Dallas Cowboys as the best run blocking group in the NFL


Go Up, come down: This was not Taylors finest afternoon throwing the ball. He had some issues with accuracy for most of the day. He however made it up with his legs on more than one occasion. To me that’s what franchise QB’s do when something is not working they adjust and make it work with another facet of their game. For Taylor that happens to be his legs. Much like a bad pitcher on an off start he muscled through it and found a way to win


I miss college: No really I do….That said Robey-Coleman picked a nice day to have one of his best games as a pro. He had a pick 6 that determined the game and an interception to seal the game. That had to be awesome


More Clay: The Offense just seems to run better the earlier Clay is involved. I’ve noticed the Bills are making it a point to get him in involved early and often. They especially like to get him involved in the middle of the field so the Defense has to make note of it. The result has opened up a lot of options for the Bills


Extra Points: Lindell seems to be on shaky ground but be careful what you wish for in terms of just straight cutting him. The Bills would likely go with a younger kicker and there would be growing pains with him. I’d rather stay with the guy who knows the winds in Buffalo.


Step Up: Woods so far is taking advantage of the opportunity with Watkins down. The other WR’s however have not. One of them stepping up and making their mark would do wonders for the offense now and down the road.


Looking Ahead: One game at a time has to be the mentality. The Bills should not take a wounded and battered 49ers club lightly. I could see them rallying around Kaepernick and playing lights out to get that win for him given the attention he has been getting. This is a game the Bills should win. Starting fast will be very important in this game. You do not want the 49ers believing they have a chance

Thoughts on Week 4: vs New England

Mike Watkins

@merk256

10/4/16


Fight Night: The game started out with a fight pregame due to the Patriots running through a Bills DB drill. From start to finish the Bills were punching the Patriots in the mouth. For the first time since I can remember the Patriots had to deal with suspect flags and no calls. Bills fans had no sympathy for them as they have been dealing with them for a decade and a half. That said, the coaches game planned this to near perfection and the players executed it


2 Weeks In: Its looking like the move to remove Roman was a very smart one. It’s not that the offense is lighting up the scoreboard, it looks like there are clear game plan each week and a confidence to execute it. The offense doesn’t have to be a juggernaut to be effective. What it has to do and is doing is to click off at least a few first downs so the defense can get fresh and the field position can change. Under Roman there were far to many three and outs. Under Lynn that seems to have changed


One Man Band: To say Zach Brown had a day would be an understatement. He was all over the field and played like his hair was on fire. Brown is another in an increasing long line of under the radar free agents that Whaley seems to pluck from the field every year. Brown’s coverage ability alone is worth keeping him on the field


What about Bob: R.Woods showed up this week in a big way. Taylor looked for him early and often and would good reason. Anyone watching the game film of the first 3 gmaes knows that Woods gets open and gets open a lot. Taylor is finally getting him the ball


Unicorn: Tyrod Taylor discovered what he at one time must of thought was a myth, the middle of the field. The Patriots as expected left it wide open daring him to beat them there and sure enough that’s what he did. He needs to keep at it because it will only make his money through, the deep ball for the slow crowd, that much easier


Clay Day: After being next to completely MIA over the first three weeks Clay showed what he can do and why the Bills brought him here. Once again Clay is open a lot but just has not had the targets that he needs. If one good thing can come from this Watkins injury its that Tyrod will learn to lean on the other weapons he has


Leaders: Its clear as day that A.Williams is the leader of the secondary and they march to the beat of his drum. The performance of all the DB’s is elevated when he is out there and the mistakes are few and far between. He has become a key player to this defense and keeping him on the field is of the utmost importance


Gilly: Gillislee carries need to keep increasing and not because he is producing, I mean that’s good but its reason number 2. McCoy is not going to be able to keep this pace for the year. He is eventually going to wear out or succumb to a injury. Cutting into his touches is only going to help the Bills in the long run. It wouldn’t be a bad idea to get J.Williams in on some action either just so he can start adjusting to the speed of Sundays


Alexander Again: Its going to be hard to take Alexander off this field when Lawson returns. The guy is everywhere and is tied for the team lead in Sacks. File him under another great find by Whaley


Looking ahead: The Bills need to keep the momentum going against a better than they look Rams team. The issue here is the Bills historically have always had issues when going to the west coast for 4pm games. Its no excuse though. They are on a roll and need to keep it going after putting themselves in a hole to start the season. They need to take away Gurley early and make the Rams QB beat them

Thoughts on Week 3: vs Arizona

Mike Watkins

@merk256

9/27/16


Show up: Offense looked good but the defense finally looked like what Bills fans have been waiting for. Its been a frustrating tenure for Rex and the fans watching a dominate top 5 defense woeful under perform under Rex who is known for his defensive acumen. There are still spots they can shore up, 3rd Down, but this is the type of performance fans expect to see week in and week out


More and More McCoy: Once again the focal point of the offense is L.McCoy. With good reason he is the most talented offensive player they have on the field right now. They look like they are going to ride him all year and as long as he can stay healthy it wont be a bad idea. That said Gillislee deserves more carries than he is getting


Middle Issues: Its painfully obvious that Tyrod Taylor avoids throwing to the middle of the field. It’s a problem and its only going to get worse. People like to bang on Clay and Woods for their lack of production but the short and intermediate over the middle area is where those two operate the best. Problem is Taylor cannot ever find them and get them the ball. If Anthony Lynn can fix this issue the Bills offense will reach a whole new level and be extremely tough to stop


What can Brown do for you: Apparently a lot. Zach Brown is a player I want to bring back next year. His coverage ability against TE’s is going to be extremely handy in the AFC East. He was all over the field on Sunday and is excellent in coverage. Preston Brown on the other hand is showing a whole lot better grasp of the defense this year and is making an impact in the run game


Wiliams^2: Kyle Williams and Aaron Williams both had big games and the defense rallied around both. A.Williams makes a huge difference in the secondary when he plays. His understanding of angles helps the CB’s tremendously. Kyle Williams is starting to look like his old self again. With Dareus a week away and Shaq Lawson a few more after that, the Bills will be cooking with gas up front real soon


Miller and Mills: The right side of the OL had about the best day I have seen them have in years. The two were very good throughout the day and it looks like the light may have finally clicked on for Miller.


Alexander the Great: I have to say the more I watch L.Alexander the more I like him. The guy just never stops moving. When Shaq Lawson gets back he will obviously dig into his snaps but it’s good to know the bills have depth and options there


White Out: I was really impressed with Corey White. He played very well against a tough and talented WR group in Arizona. That game builds confidence and gives the Bills depth and talent in a league where spread formations are the norm


Looking ahead: If the Bills can get back to back wins even with one of them being against a wounded Bradyless Patriot team its going to allow them to start building momentum they desperately need after an 0-2 start. Brady or no Brady the Patriots are tough. A loss however and the Bills will be in some real trouble heading into the 2 quarter of the season and will be left with little room for error

Thoughts on Week 2: vs New York

Mike Watkins

@merk256

9/19/16


Spurt and Sputter: The Offense keeps going in spurts and then sputters down. Obviously Roman took the fall for this but its ultimately the players responsibility. Across the board every player on offense has to play far more consistently then they have


Good Goodwin: The TD in which Goodwin absolutely roasted D.Revis is why this team has given him chance after chance. The talent is there, and its explosive. The problem still is keeping him on the field. Goodwin doesn’t have to be an 80+ reception WR in this league. 35-40 with 5 50 plus yard TD Receptions and teams have to pay attention to him. That’s all he has to do and he will play for a long time in this league


Tate Returns: Pretty easy to see why the Bills brought in Tate. His return ability is excellent. Even if he doesn’t bring it to the house he is changing field position which is valuable. This also makes you wonder how long they will hold on to R.Bush as his role seems to already be drastically reduced


McCoy Mercy: McCoy again took the heavy work load of the offense. The Bills need to be careful how often they go to the well with him. His style and body type are not matching his usage at this point. Gillislee is more than a capable backup and should start seeing more reps than he is. McCoy will not make it to the end of the year at this rate


Over the middle: Tyrod needs to start completing these passes especially on third down. They are costing the Bills and teams are forcing him to make the throw betting that he cannot hit it. Two games in they are right


Amnesia: Darby and Gilmore had a day to forget. They had trouble tracking the ball all night and the physical Jets WR took advantage of it on nearly every drive. I expect a bounce back performance against another tough duo in Arizona


Safeties: The Safety play and LB in pass coverage is terrible to say the least right now. There were gaping holes all over the middle of the field that were vacated by out of position LB’s and S’s. This must drastically improve and immediately


Greg Roman


-The firing is just odd and now a few day removed I still don’t think there is a straight story out there about who actually pulled the trigger.


-Overall I didn’t think Roman was that bad. There were obviously improvements that needed to be made but a lot of what I say was poor execution over bad play calling or design.


-My guess, and its nothing more than that, is that Doug Whaley is ultimately the guy who pushed him out the door. I think Whaley thinks he has provided his OC and HC with far more offensive talent than they have shown this far


-It will be interesting to see what if anything Anthony Lynn brings to the table with the offense. I honestly do not see what he is going to bring to the table that will change anything

Thoughts on Week 1: At Baltimore

Mike Watkins

@merk256

9/11/16


The Good: The defense outside of 1 deep TD pass looked the part of a typical Rex Ryan defense. That’s a good sign looking forward. Getting that side of the ball straightened out was one of if not the top priority of the coaching staff this offseason


The Book On Tyrod: Pretty clear today the Ravens focal point on defense was to take the deep ball away, Key on McCoy, and bet that Taylor could not complete enough intermediate and short passes to get the win. In the end they were right. This really falls on Tyrod Taylor. This has been the book on him that he stays away from the middle of the field and his accuracy is 50/50 at best in the intermediate and short throws. The intermediate throw is what separates good QB’s from bad ones. If Tyrod wants to take the next step he must begin to hit these throws.


Stay Out of the Bushes: R.Bush should not be getting the carries he is. At this point of his career he is a passing situation RB and in my opinion slot WR. He should not be getting the carries he is. Especially when you have a RB in Gillislee behind him that has shown he understands the running game concepts and his style fits those concepts


Penalties: Penalties are going to happen, the Bills however still have to do a better job of playing under control. They now have made a name for themselves for stupid penalties so it is going to be looked for more so by the officials. The only way to break that perception is to Stop. Committing. The. Stupid. Penalties.


Hello 2014: Jerry Hughes looks like he is born again in this defense. Just one game in he looks like a completely different player and far more comfortable than he ever did last year.


Leaks: The OL better get it together and get it together in a hurry. This was not their best day by any means and while it improved for spurts it must get vastly better than what was shown today. The Jets are next and their DL is even deeper and more talented


More McCoy: Pretty Clear that McCoy is going to be the work horse for the Bills this year. He looked fresh and quick as ever during the game. Once the OL gets it together opening up holes for him you can expect some very big games out of him


Relax: Its Week 1, that's it, one week. There are 15 more games on this ride. Half of this league is going to start thinking about what they are going to do with the top overall pick, while the other half are checking Google Flights for tickets to Houston in February 

9/11... A Moment to Remember, a Moment to Create 

Mike Watkins

@merk256

9/11/15


It's amazing that 15 years have passed and I can still remember where I was and who I was with when the planes struck the towers. I shake my head and really take a moment to think "really, 15 years have past". 

The day still reverberates through all of our lives on nearly an everyday basis. Maybe that's what keeps the memories so strong and vivid in my, our, head. Living in New York you can't but think about and be reminded about the day on an weekly nearly daily basis. One World Trade Center strikes the sky day and night as a constant reminder of what happened on this day 15 years ago. It keeps the memories there and the emotions tethered to you

While watching the games todayeveryone should take a moment to look around the room, parking lot, stadium, or favorite bar. Take a moment to take in who you are sitting with, cheering with, and sharing moments with while watching this great sport. Capture those memories and tether your emotions to them. Make them as vivid and as strong as possible. 

This day, at its very core, has taught us that life is precious and that you never know what the next day or even moment may bring. That's why you should take the moment to take it all in, enjoy it, and create memories that won't be fleeting. Thousands of families todaywon't get that chance with their loved ones because of this day 15 years ago.

I'll never forget what happened on this day 15 years ago, that's for sure. So use today not only to remember those who lost their lives 15 years ago, but to also create with those family and friends that you share today with.

Thank you for reading and enjoy the games. 

Thoughts on the 2016 Bills and Season Prediction

Mike Watkins

@merk256

9-5-16








QB: T.Taylor, E.Manuel, C.Jones

-Played out as expected. Realistically Jones should never see the field at all this year he has a long way to go and a year on the bench would do him good. The only thing that would change that is if the QB market heats up due to injuries and teams start calling for EJ


RB: L.McCoy, M.Gillislee, R.Bush, J.Williams

-Losing K.Williams will be a blow to this unit given his production last year. Overall though its not a bad overall group. It has a good mix of style and age. J.Williams will be the one to watch as he has the talent to be a good one in the system the Bills use


-I look for McCoy to have an even bigger year this year. His numbers were down last year due to injuries but the explosion is still there. He looks even quicker this year, something that I didn’t think was possible


FB: G.Gronkowski

-Versatility is the name of the game here. Felton really didn’t fit what the Bills want here and with his salary it made the move to cut him easy. Gronk is a jack of all trades that can give opposing defenses something to worry about every play


WR: S.Watkins, R.Woods, M.Goodwin, G.Salas, W.Powell

-It goes Watkins, dropoff…Woods, big dropoff…then Goodwin, small dropoff…Salas and Powell. This position could be a problem for the Bills this year. It gets really sketchy after Watkins and Woods. Watkins talent is elite and Woods can be one of the better number two’s in the league. After that its question marks galore. I like Goodwins talent but him getting through the first half of week 1 without getting injured is less than 50/50 at best


-Advantage of having R.Bush on the roster is that he can be your 6th WR and slot guy. Which is why I am not overly shocked at only keeping 5 WR’s


TE: C.Clay, J.Dray, N.O’leary

-Its Clay and everyone else. Some out there thought Clay didn’t live up to his deal last year. Personally I was ok with his numbers and I expect better stat production this year. He also was an asset in the run game which is why Buffalo valued and still places a big value on him. He needs to stay healthy however because there is not a lot behind him.


-If there is an in season move to be made I believe this is where it will happen


OL: E.Wood, C.Glenn, R.Incognito, J.Miller, J.Mills, C.Kouandjio, P.Lewis, S.Henderson, R.Groy

-The starters as a whole unit are good and work well together. Having the same 5 back will help the unit across the board. From the C over to LT is a set of 3 that is as good as any in the league and may be the best side of run blocking in the NFL.


-Camp started out with big question marks behind the starters but overall I don’t think the Bills are in horrible shape there. They received a big boost in depth when they claimed P.Lewis off waivers

-Still some question marks about pass blocking and the right side but it doesn’t look to be nearly as bad a situation as first thought


DL: M.Dareus, K.Williams, A.Washington, C.Bryant, J.Worthy, L.Douzable

-Lot of versatility here as well as a lot of blue collar type players. This unit is finally starting to take the shape of what Rex likes down front. 4 of the 6 players here can play the 0-5 tech and that is how Rex likes it so that the opposing OL has to prepare for each DL rather than just one or two


-Dareus is obviously the gem of the group and missing him for the first 4 games will be an issue. The good news however is he will have a fresh set of legs to go down the home stretch with

-Worthy looks to be another excellent Under the radar FA find for Whaley. He has been an excellent fit so far as he resurrects his career in Buffalo.


-Getting K.Williams back on the field is a huge gain for the Bills as he is a leader on the field and in the locker room. He was sorely missed last year


LB: J.Hughes, P.Brown, L.Alexander, B.Spikes, B.Albright, L.McCray, Z.Brown, R.Humber

-This is a situation where I think, and Bills fans hope, that the sum is greater than the parts. Individually you look at the lines up and you see J.Hughes and a bunch of question marks. However, if the preseason is any indication the unit actually seems to play well together. This unit was plagued with players constantly being out of position. This year the early results are that there will be a lot less of that


-B.Spikes was a nice addition in the middle of camp. I think he will fill the role of run stopper and short yardage thumper nicely


-Z.Brown provides the Bills with the coverage LB that they clearly lacked last year. His impact in Nickle and Dime defenses will be important


-J.Hughes is in for a big year in my opinion. I expect him to shot at the QB from every which way this year. He has also become a leader on the defense and an emotional one at that. He however needs to cut down on the unnecessary penalties that have cost the Bills in the past


CB: S.Gilmore, R.Darby, N.Robey-Coleman, K.Seymour, C.White

-At the top Gilmore and Darby can be the best duo in the NFL. Both have the ability to cut the field and half for the defense which is an advantage in a pass happy league that a lot of teams would love to have. Behind them the Bills have a quality slot CB and what looks like to be a gem of a 6th round find.


-In a contract year I fully expect to see the absolute best that Gilmore can be. If the Bills don’t then it’s a red flag and will drop the price tag. Gilmore has it all though and he will establish himself as the one of the best if not the best man cover CB in the NFL


S: A.Williams, C.Graham, R.Blanton, D.Williams, J.Meeks, C.Anderson

-The quality of this group is completely dependent on A.Williams and his ability to stay healthy. He is the leader of the group and the most talented of the 6. He is a tone setter who provides the Bills with a lot of options


-C.Graham had some issues last year adjusting to his new role but seems to have taken to it this year with a better understanding of where he is supposed to be and when


-I’m not thrilled with the depth but its also why special teams is so important, it will land you a roster spot


-D.Williams took strides this offseason but I would like to see it actually translate to the field during the 16. If he looks the same as he did last year when the gun sounds on this season he could be one of the first ones out the door


Random Thoughts


-Coaching, defense, injuries, talk about whatever you want. The reality is this team will go as far as Tyrod Taylor will take them. If he doesn’t continue to develop the Bills will stall out and miss the playoffs. If he continues to build off of last year the Bills will absolutely be in the hunt. It truly is on his shoulders


-The Bills look like they focused on having more versatility across the roster by players being able to fill multiple rolls. This is a hall mark of the Patriots and the Bills seem to be mimicking it to a certain extent. I for one am all for it and believe the Bills should have been doing it for awhile now. NFL rosters are very fluid in todays game, and you must have maneuverability throughout the year. This is especially true for a GM like Whaley who is always combing the waiver wire and veteran free agent market year round


-I expect the Defense to be much improved this year. Rex has to solid of a track record to let it slip again. Just in the preseason alone you can see the players buying in more. The DL especially has taken a step forward in accepting it which is key being that the DL in a 3-4 scheme is one of the less glamorous positions in the league


-Theoretically the Defense should get better and better as the year goes on as it gets injected with talent. Week 5 they get the most talented player on the defense back in Dareus. He should make a big impact almost immediately. Then in November the Bills pass rush and LB crew should get a shot in the arm with a fresh Shaq Lawson.


-I do not see Rex Ryan job being on the line even with no playoffs. The Pegula’s seem to be committed to the Ryan Whaley combo for at the minimum of this year and next. I personally agree with it. You cannot keep changing out the pieces. Commit to something and go with it.


-I think the Bills are about to see the value of keeping the same OC and QB combo intact for consecutive years. This is important for Tyrod to keep progressing and the Bills should be grooming a replacement for Roman when he might draw interest this offseason from NFL teams. He has the makings of a HC


Prediction: For the first time in a decade I’m going to say the Bills will make the playoffs this year. I think they will be the 6th and final team in. Here are the reasons why


-Same System: I don’t think enough value is being placed on the fact that the Bills are using the same system with the same coaches for the second straight year. The defense I expect an improvement just based on Rex track record alone. The offense however is where you should see major strides. The fact that Taylor is back with Roman with nearly the exact same personal around him has value. Things should be even slower for him this year and the improvement should be steep from last year. This comfort level should add wins


-Prove it Players: Here is one advantage of having little money to spend in Free Agency, you tend to gather a lot of highly motivated players on very short term cheap deals. Right now the Bills are loaded with such players. Whether it’s a guy like Worthy playing to prove he belongs, Z.Brown proving he is a starter and worth more than a one year deal, or guys like Woods and Gilmore looking to cash in on big time performances in 2016. The Bills have a lot of highly motivated players on this team right now who will be looking to go out all week every week. The advantage of that does not need to be explained


-S.Watkins going Bonkers: Speaking of motivation, I think Sammy Watkins is ready to put up the type of season that his talent warrents. I think he has heard enough about the injuries and other nonsense. If he is healthy for 16 games there is not a CB in this league that can handle him 1 on 1 when he is at his peak. That happens and the entire offense will open up


-Tyrod Taylor: Taylor is about to take it to another level. The coaches and front office saw it and decided to lock him up in anticipation of it. Taylor has the ability to take over games with both his feet and his arm. Once the mental part catches the physical Taylor and the Bills will be cooking with gas


-Buying in: There looks to be a whole level difference of commitment this year, especially on the defense side of the ball. Everyone knows from the coaches to the players to the fans that the defense should have been better last year. Both the players and the coaches were holding onto their past and neither wanted to let go. I think the players have given in to the coaches and trust that their track record speaks for itself.


-Slow Start, fast finish: I expect the beginning of the season to be a little rocky. That said I think the momentum will build as the season goes on. The Bills will get Dareus back in week 5, Shaq Lawson will be back in November, the defense will begin to lock in, then Taylor and Roman will find a nice offensive groove. I believe this will lead to the Bills being one of the hotter teams in the league at the end of the year and ultimately result in the end of the playoff drought

Thoughts on Week 2, Karlos, Dareus

Mike Watkins

8/22/16

@merk256


The Game

-Overall You have to be completely thrilled with what you saw out of Tyrod Taylor. He look poised and in complete control of the offense


-The OL looked shaky at times but it is also down a few starters. The advantage of having Taylor is they don’t have to be perfect but they do have to get better in pass blocking. Run blocking could also use some touch up


-Albright is making this team. Nearly every snap he is making the play or around the play


-The biggest change so far that I have witnessed with the defense is the DL play. They all seem to have bought in. This is big because DL in a 3-4 is not a glamorous position. There is a lot of dirty work involved and the praise comes in the overall performance of the defense rather that the individual


-Goodwin is an athlete and has talent, but can that talent stay on the field. I’m not counting on it


-I think Jerry Hughes is making a return to the double digit sack club. He also might be the leader of this defense


-Worthy is another in a growing list of good under the radar free agent pick ups by Whaley


Karlos Williams

-Completely and utterly disappointed in Karlos. I was excited to have what looked like a two headed monster at RB for at least another 2-3 years. He and McCoy complimented each other very well. I loved the way he ran and played the game as a rookie, he was one of my favorite players week in and week out


-The fall is dramatic and shocking. From a ultra-promising rookie year to being cut because of weight issues(and I’m sure the 4 game suspension played a part). The Hankerson cut sent a message, this cut sends a strait smack in the head to every player on the roster that thinks their spot is a lock. Rex and Whaley sent a clear message to the locker room “Anyone else care to F around and not take this seriously?”


-The one concern, and major one at that, that I had about Williams is the severe concussion he suffered during the year. I do believe that it has played a role in this, to what degree I do not know. My bet is however that Karlos with has a short shelf life with his style and that concussion issue. It actually may be better that he step away from the game for health reasons


Dareus

-I command Dareus for taking the 4 weeks he is going to have away to be proactive and improve his life. Yes it was pot and no I don’t agree that a player should be tested or suspended for the use of it. However it’s the discipline that it’s the issue. The Bills made a big investment and commitment to him by giving him generational wealth. He needs to return the commitment to them not only in season but in the offseason as well. Entering rehab is a step in that direction

Random Bills thoughts of the past week

Mike Watkins

8-18-16

@merk256


First Preseason Game

-The defense looks like it is running smoother. There are still some gaps but the wasted steps and movement is a lot less than it was last year. players seem to be in a lot better position than they were last year


-RB J.Williams reminds me a lot of T.Henry. He is quick with a low center of gravity. He isn't going to break a lot of 20+ runs but he'll pop a lot of 8-10 yarders which will drive any opposing defense nuts


-CB Seymour looks like he is adapting well. At the very least he should be solid depth this year. He still has some work to do but the early returns look great for a 6th rounder


-The Bills DL looks a lot more comfortable in their positions this year. DL coach Blake will be one of the best additions this offseason. You can already see his handy work in the play of Washington


-The WR position still looks like Watkins, Woods and a whole bunch of question marks. Goodwin flashes but you can't trust him to stay on the field


-C.Jones showed some flashes and showed why he really shouldn't see the field for 2016.


-The Ik injury is another one in a long line of injuries at the position but let's be real, he was never anything to write home about. He is more of a pet project of Rex to twist the nuts of the Jets. This will end up being good for the Bills as a player more deserving will take his place


-The Bills really need C.Clay to get through the year healthy. There is nothing and I mean nothing behind him


Overall: I thought the Bills played solid for the first game. There was a lot to like about the rookies and new additions performances. Obviously there is still a long way to go but it looks like the players are more comfortable this year after one game


Other

-I like the cutting of Hankerson. Not that I want to see anyone fail or lose their job but it sends a clear message that you need to be on top of your game everyday


-Extremely Disappointed in Dareus. He needs to get his act together. He is to important of a player and too expensive to be sitting on the sideline for the first 4 games of the year


-Anyone saying to cut Dareus is delusional at best. Talent buys you chances, and it should. An All Pro should not be treated the same as a roster bubble player. This is a sports hierarchy


-Kroy Biermann is a solid player pickup for this part of the year. He’s not going to light the world on fire but he isn’t going to embarrass you either


-Honestly You can call the stadium whatever you want. It’s just something I can’t get that fired up about. I personally think that it’s great that New Era owns the naming rights now. It’s a great local company that I am a huge fan of.

2016 Bills Draft Review and Grades

Mike Watkins

@merk256

5/1/16


Round 1: S.Lawson, Clemson- Need met value in the first round for the Bills here. Once the clock started and he was there it was a done deal for the Bills. I had stated before the draft that if the Bills could come out of Thursday with Lawson or Spence it would be a win. Well, it’s a win. Lawson give the Bills the type of versatile relentless player that Rex loves for his defense. Lawson will start right away according to Whaley and its easy to see why. He puts as much effort into stopping the run as his does rushing the passer. With his size length and athletic ability Lawson should be an ideal fit for the Bills in the defense and contribute right away. Overall this was an excellent pick for the Bills


Grade: A, Need meets value


Round 2: R.Ragland, Alabama-They paid a little much to move up 8 spots but Rex needs his D.Harris/R.Lewis for his defense so you can live with it. Ragland can be that guy. Now while I am not as high on him as others he does offer a lot of things to this defense. He is an extremely intelligent and instinctive player which is needed in this defense. The Alabama defense is one of the more complex in College football and Ragland mastered it. Rex needs this type of mind on the field to make his defense operate properly so Ragland should see time early and often. Now you can spin it however you want but Ragland has issues with pass defense. His own college coach knew it and took him out of certain packages or adjusted assignments to work around it. I expect the Bills to do the same. Ragland will see a lot of time as a blitzer, something he excelled at in college


Grade: A-, Rex gets his Field General


Round 3: A.Washington-The Bills doubled down on DL in the 3rd round and selected one of the better interior pass rushers in the draft in Washington. Ultimately he will be a 3-4 DE but that is not where he will start. Mentally Washington can not play that position even though he is physical ideal. I’ve always said that the hardest part about finding 5 techs and 0/1 techs is finding the players who mentally want to do it. There is no glamour in the position but its extremely important in getting Rex scheme to operate correctly. Washington will spend the early part of his career in the nickel and die sub packages taking advantage of what he does best and that’s getting after the QB. From there its on the coaches to sell him on the less glamorous positions of the 3-4 base


Grade: B, I would have gone NT but there is a lot of promise with Washington in a pass first league


Round 4: C.Jones, Ohio State-Not gonna lie I’m not a fan of this pick. Yes he has the size and the arm, that’s where the good ends. Once opposing teams had tape on him and the coaching staff tried to open the offense more the worse Cardale looked. Those are massive problems and not problems that are easily correctable or correctable at all. He’ll have real issues even becoming a avg back up. I compare him to JaMarcus Russell or John Skelton. Both players had similar attributes and nearly the same issues. The bright side is at least the Bills took a QB. I hope he proves me dead wrong


Grade: F, Passed on better players at the position and far better players at other positions


Round 5: J.Williams, Arkansas- For those who don’t follow college football closely this is very much a “Who?” pick. Williams to me makes a lot of sense. He has a lot of the things I look for in RB’s. First and foremost he has excellent balance. This is so key for any RB as it will add additional key yards to any run. He is also very much a one cut and go RB which is what I prefer at the position. Some may not like the position but with how much the bills run the ball in my opinion they should and will carry 4 RB’s on the roster. The position was riddled with injuries last year and this pick tells me the Bills will not be caught holding the bag again


Grade: B+, Williams is an underrated talent and adds much needed depth to a run first team


Round 6: K.Listenbee, TCU-I feel like I have been saying for over a year now that the Bills offense really needs a deep threat on the other side of Watkins. The popular thought was they needed and most wanted size. To me that made little sense and was redundant. The Bills need a deep threat so they don’t have to count on Watkins to be that guy. By doing so that make Watkins even more lethel because now he can run any route on any snap. This threat would also pull the S back off the LOS allowing players like McCoy and Clay space to operate in the middle of the field. Both of whom are excellent with the ball in their hands. Finally it will allow Taylor to become more comfortable throwing to the middle of the field by uncluttering it, an issue he has. Now is a 6th round pick going to accomplish this? Likely not but it puts the guy, Goodwin, who is supposed to be that threat on notice and gives him some competition. Listenbee has a lot of work to do to become a legit deep threat, yes it takes more than just being fast, but I like what the Bills are trying to accomplish with the selection


Grade: B+, The Bills try to add a home run threat to the offense


Round 6: K.Seymour, USC-Most have killed this pick but honestly I don’t mind it. Right when you start getting to the late 6th and absolutely in the 7th my general rule of thumbe is pick an athletic freak with tech isssues and see if you can coach him up. Seymour is that guy. Measurables are what you want at the position and he needs a lot of work. Start him off on Special teams, have the coaches work with him and see if you can mold him into a solid player. I like the pick


Grade: B, Uber athlete project


Overall draft Grade B+

The Bills had a clear vision of what they wanted to get done in this draft and the issues they wanted to address and for the most part they accomplished it. I agree with and am happy with most of their selections and at worst think this will be a solid draft with a shot to be a key one moving forward for this front office and coaching staff.


Other thoughts

-The Bills did not try and pretend that the issues of last year did not happen or that they can just be coached away and they used their most valuable draft assets to address it. Reading that you likely think “don’t all teams and GM’s do that” the answer is no, they don’t. The Bills were clearly laser focused on addressing the problems of the front 7 last year, specifically the ability to generate a pass rush. They used their first rounder on arguably the most disruptive and best pass rushing DE in college last year. They trade up in the 2nd to get a LB with one of his best attributes being his ability to blitz. They then use their third rounder on a DT who’s best ability is to rush the passer. Its clear the Bills identified the ability to rush generate a pass rush as a big problem and were aggressive in fixing in it


-One position the Bills may regret not addressing is Safety. I think there is a big issue there and with an injury it becomes a really big problem for the Bills. You can not address everything in the offseason but not being more aggressive there may haunt the Bills


-Common thread for most of the Bills selections was big contributors, from big successful winning programs. There first 4 selection came from schools who have been in the title hunt or have won the national title over the past two years. Its clear the Bills wanted winning players from winning schools early and often

Bills Stick to Draft Blue Print - Draft Grade (A-)
by Anthony D. Macari

Bills stuck to a carefully planned script throughout the draft by bringing in prospects they knew well. The picks mostly followed a profile of coming from major programs that produced as a team at the highest level (top 4 picks all played on teams that played for the National Championship over the past 2 years. They also added speed and athleticism to the roster at key positions late. They boldly traded up in the second round for Reggie Ragland and rolled the dice on a raw QB prospect with few starts, but a cannon for an arm and a championship ring on his finger. All in all, they added talent at positions of need that fit a blue print for the kind of team Rex Ryan and Doug Whaley want to build. This team's talent is now a much better fit for what Rex wants to do and hopefully the results show on the field. 

Round 1 - Pick 19 (19)

Shaq Lawson - DE - Clemson

6'3" 269


Hard to imagine a better fit for the Bills than Shaq. He will step in day one and fill Mario Williams role opposite Hughes at DE/ Edge. His versatility is a huge plus and gives Rex a valuable weapon he needs to run his D his way. Lawson has the hands and burst to pressure the QB and the size and strength the set the edge. He had his best games when the light shined brightest especially the National Championship game. If he commits to the weight room and buys into Rex's system, he has the potential to be a game changer. 


Round 2 - Pick 10 (41)

Reggie Ragland- LB - Alabama

6'1" 247


If you love old school football, Ragland will be a favorite. He's a down hill thumper with better than advertised athleticism. He was the heart and soul of 'Bama's National Championship Defense. Most early mocks, including mine, projected Ragland to the Bills. When he slipped to the top of the 2nd round, Whaley pounced and moved up, trading away their 4th round picks in 2016 & 2017. A steep price, but considering, according to Whaley, he was next on their board behind Shaq in the first, this is great value. He fills a huge immediate need and even if he only is on the field for 2 downs early in his career, he's the kind of player that will make all around him better. Even in today's pass happy league, you need an anchor in the middle to stuff the run. That can come by either a space eating nose tackle up front or a thumper like Ragland at ILB. The Bills passing on a true NT throughout this draft means they primarily plan to continue to try to rely on their front 4 to generate pressure and rely on the LB's to stack and shed to stuff the run. Ragland will have to be used in blitz packages to stay on the field on 3rd down, but that could be a strength. Ragland will be an instant fan favorite and as a guy projected to go in the 1st round who slipped to round 2, will come in with a chip on his shoulder. 

Round 3 - Pick 17 (80)

Adolphus Washington- DT - Ohio State

6'3" 301


Washington is a penetrating interior d-lineman that will instantly be used in rotation with Kyle and Dareus inside. With Kyle going down with injuries the past few seasons, this was a much needed infusion of youth and athleticism. He has a sophisticated repertoire of pass rush moves and a great burst to shoot the gap. Rex will turn him lose to get after the passer, but he also can be a force against the run. 3rd straight pick who played in a National Championship game for a major program. 

Round 4 - Pick 41 (139)

Cardale Jones - QB - Ohio State

6'5" 253


Cardale Jones is a physical freak with a cannon for an arm. For the 4th straight pick, the Bills go for a player who played for a National Championship. With that being said, this is easily my least favorite pick in the draft. I can't think of a single case where a QB prospect who got drafted because of his physical attributes but could not win a starting job at his college went on to a successful NFL career. He had a magical run to a National Championship as a 3rd string QB who due to injury was thrust into the spotlight, but he failed to sustain that level of production once there was tape on him in 2015. After 3 games, he was benched and never regained his starting job. The plan is to have him sit and learn, but I just don't see him being able to adjust to the speed at the NFL level with a clipboard in his hand. Connor Cook got knocked for not being named team captain, but Cardale won a National Title at QB, wasn't voted a captain (OSU had 6) and lost his job due to inaccuracy, lack of production on 3rd down and in the red zone and a lack of leadership. I hope I am wrong, but this pick screams bust and a waste of a pick. The biggest risk isn't getting no value out of a 4th round pick, the biggest risk is moves are or aren't made at the position because of that great tease of talent Cardale posses. Potential can be a coach & franchise killer if it fails to materialize.  

Round 5 - Pick 18 (156)

Jonathan Williams - RB - Arkansas

5'11" 220


A shifty 3 down back who sat out all of 2015 due to a foot injury that required surgery. Assuming he comes back 100%, this pick could be a steal. On the surface RB wasn't a need, but the Bills are a team that absolutely wants to base their offense around the run and Shady is 27 with a lot of mileage and Karlos Williams has concussion concerns. May end up being the 2nd best back in this draft behind Elliott. If your in a fantasy keeper league, you may want to scoop him up. 

Round 6 - Pick 17 (192)

Kolby Listenbee - WR - TCU

6'0" 197


Listenbee may be the fastest player in the draft. he ran a 4.39 at the combine with a double hernia. The plan is clear that Bills want to introduce a deep threat opposite Sammy to help open things up for the run game underneath. Listenbee not only brings world class track speed, but has solid hands and the ability to make adjustments to the ball in the air. The major risk, as with most track star receivers, is his ability to stay healthy. 

Round 6 - Pick 43 (218)

Kevon Seymour - CB - USC

5'11" 186


Like Listenbee, Seymour is a burner. He largely disappointed at USC not producing to the level of his ability. However, you can't teach that kind of speed, so if he can become a student of the game he has some great upside. He'll have to make the roster based on his willingness to commit to special teams and in dime packages. 

Quick Thoughts morning of Day 2

Mike Watkins

@merk256

4/29/16


-Sweet Home Alabama: That’s what the Alabama vaunted defenders did on Thursday night. The reality is their stock is being impacted by the former Alabama players that were highly regarded and selected only to not come anywhere close to live up to the billing. Sabans players are now getting the dreaded “System Player” label. I think the drop will be short lived in the 2nd round however

 

-Myles Jack Knee: Once Atlanta passed, a team that has a big need at the position and his former college coach, it became clear that the reports on his knee are accurate if not worse. I still think the knee is worth the risk given the talent level of the player. Some team in the early 2nd will pull the trigger I imagine

 

-Speed Kills: Coleman went right about where I thought he would and Fuller coming off the board next isn’t that surprising. The guy can be a game breaker and you can work on his hands, the 4.3 speed you can not

 

-The QB’s: Will be really interesting how the next set of QB’s shake out. I have two QB’s with a day two ranking and that’s Cook and Hogan.

 

-The Drop: If you think that one video was the reason Tunsil dropped you really do not get how this process works. Its pretty clear at this point Tunsil has some off the field issues. NFL staffs do extensive back round checks and it had been rumored that Tunsil had been slowly dropping for a month. Now we see why

 

The Bills

-A lot of ways the Bills could go here but Some name I like are Billings, Reed, Jack, Smith, Ogbah, Spence, Bell, Alexander, M.Thomas, C.Cook


-Of those my top 3 would be Spence, Billing, and Reed. V.Bell and M.Alexander next up


-That said the Bills really need to find a way to come out of tonight with a S or a LB that can push for a starting gig. My guess is it will be a Safety and I think the Bills will take Vonn Bell if he’s on the board in the 2nd


-With the third Round Pick I believe the Bills will take a QB. Whomever is there of C.Jones, Hackenburg, Hogan

2016 Morning of Mock Draft, Happy Draft Day

Mike Watkins
@merk256
4/28/16
 






1.Rams: J.Goff, Cal
 
2.Eagles: C.Wentz, SDST
 
3.Chargers: L.Tunsil, Ole Miss
 
4.Cowboys: J.Ramsey, Florida St
 
5.Jaguars: J.Bosa, Ohio State
 
6.Ravens: D.Buckner, Oregon
 
7.49ers: P.Lynch, Memphis
 
8.Browns: R.Stanley, Notre Dame
 
9.Buccaneers: V.Hargreaves, Florida
 
10.Giants: E.Elliot, Ohio State, RB
 
11.Bears: M.Jack, UCLA
 
12.Saints: S.Rankins, Louisville, DT
 
13.Dolphins: L.Floyd, Georgia
 
14.Raiders: D.Lee, Ohio St
 
15.Titans: J.Conklin, Michigan St
 
16.Lions: T.Decker, Ohio State
 
17.Falcons: C.Coleman, Baylor  
 
18.Colts: S.Lawson, Clemson
 
19.Bills: K.Joseph, West Virginia
 
20.Jets: J.Doctson, TCU
 
21.Redskins: A.Billings, Baylor
 
22.Texans: L.Treadwell, Ole Miss
 
23.Vikings: N.Spence, E.Kentucky
 
24.Bengals: J.Reed, Alabama
 
25.Steelers: W.Jackson, Houston
 
26.Seahawks: R.Kelly, Alabama
 
27.Packers: K.Dodd, Clemson
 
28.Chiefs: E.Apple, Ohio St
 
29.Cardinals: A.Burns, Miami
 
30.Panthers: W.Fuller, Notre Dame
 
31.Broncos: A.Robinson, Alabama
 
 
-First the Bills selection: The Bills Safety play last year was pretty atrocious. Williams returning will help but he has health concerns. Graham really shouldn’t be a 16 game starter and his value is more in the role of jack of all trades depth.
 
Joseph provides the Bills with a few things. First he’ll be an instant starter. He lives and breathes football which I’m sure made big fans of this coaching staff. He has great instincts and can play either FS or SS. This provides the Bills with protection for both Williams and Graham
 
Joseph also in theory will give Rex that CF ball hawking Safety that allows Rex to do a lot of things in terms of coverage and blitz’s. Since he left Baltimore he has not been able to find that Ed Reed type player to stalk the middle of the field. This is extremely valuable in the defense that Rex likes to employ
 
I personally like Joseph as a player and think he would make a great fit. He improves the defense up the middle on the 2nd and 3rd levels which the Bills desperately need. He can also provide nickel and dime coverage help at the CB spot when needed
 
Can the move down and select him? Possibly, I would try but if he is the pick, I expect it to be made at 19
 
-To me Goff is the no brainer number 1
 
-I have Tunsil and Stanley dead even. I think both will be franchise LT’s. If I had to choose one I would take Stanley but you can’t go wrong with either
 
-49ers selection was one of the more difficult ones. I think Chip Kelly learned in Philly that he should take a QB early in the draft and early in his tenure so he can mold him the way he wants
 
-If Ramsey is on the board and the Cowboys do not select him, the franchise should be stripped from the Jones family
 
-Bosa on one side Fowler on the other. If you are the Jags coaching staff and or fans you must like the sound of that
 
-Giants have been chasing an explosive RB for years. If Elliot is there I think this is the year they finally get him
 
-Its terrible that what should have been a great LB class with 2 lock top 10 picks, 1 of whom would have pushed to been the top selection, was taken from us by injuries
 
-I think you’ll see a lot of DL go at the end of round 1 as the usually flurry of trades happens. They will drop because the class is so deep and teams will figure they can get one later and then panic to move up to get the one they want

PFWR Final 2016 Mock Draft
by Anthony D. Macari

1. Los Angeles Rams:   Jared Goff  QB Cal

The Rams make the bold move up to try to find their franchise QB for their new home in L.A.


2. Philadelphia Eagles:  Carson Wentz QB ND State

Like the Rams, the Eagles make the bold move to trade up to cleanse away the Chip Kelly era.


3. San Diego Chargers: Laremy Tunsil OT Ole Miss

A big blindside protector for Rivers falls in their lap. I don’t believe the smoke screens about Stanley or Ramsey here.


4. Dallas Cowboys: Jalen Ramsey S Florida State

Ramsey vs OBJ will be must watch TV 2 times a year.


5. Jacksonville Jaguars:   Joey Bosa E Ohio State

Jags not only get and potentially dominant edge rusher, they get some much needed personality.


6. Baltimore Ravens:  Leonard Floyd E Georgia

First real swing pick of the draft. I had Elliot going to them earlier but think they look to inject youth in an aging D. With Bosa off the board and questions about Jack and Lawson’s health, Floyd is a good fit.


7. SF 49ers: Deforest Buckner DT Oregon

With no QB worth the reach here, look for them to go on the other side of the ball with a beast for the inside of their D-Line.


8. Cleveland Browns:  Ronnie Stanley OT Notre Dame

There is a lot of late buzz around Stanley. Always a good idea to rebuild starting with the O-Line.


9. Tampa Bay Bucs:  Vernon Hargraves III CB Florida

A major upgrade for their secondary.


10. NJ Giants: Myles Jack ILB UCLA

Potential reward exceeds risk at this point for Giants and fills a long standing need.


11. Chicago Bears: Shaq Lawson E Clemson

As long as the medical questions check out, adding a pass rusher like Lawson is a no brainer for Bears.


12. New Orleans Saints:  Noah Spence E E. Kentucky

Adding pressure from the Edge a good start to rebuilding D.


13. Miami Dolphins:  Ezekiel Elliott RB Ohio State

Fish will run to podium to add top Offensive skill player in draft


14. Oakland Raiders: Sheldon Rankins DT Louisville

Generating pressure up the middle will be a huge plus for this Defense


15. Tennessee Titans:  Jack Conklin OT Michigan State

Titans would be ecstatic if Conklin were on the board to protect Mariota


16. Detroit Lions:  Jarran Reed DT Alabama

Huge hole in the middle of the D-Line field with a huge man.


17. Atlanta Falcons: Darron Lee LB Ohio State

Lee will be a target for defenses like the Falcons that covet speed.


18. Indianapolis Colts:  Taylor Decker OT Ohio State

No bigger priority than keeping Luck on the field.


19. Buffalo Bills: Andrew Billings DT Baylor

Billings is the anchor in the middle the Bills need to run Rex’s Defense properly. Dareus would be free to move to the 3 or 5 tech and Billings will keep the LB’s and Edge rushers clean as he occupies blockers up front. Ragland, Ogbah and Alexander would all be good considerations here for the Defense but adding Billings could make the biggest impact for Rex. Treadwell or Coleman would be strongly considered on offense as will QB Paxton Lynch or Connor Cook but I think giving Rex the tools he needs to dominate on Defense has to be the priority.


20. NJ Jets: Paxton Lynch QB Memphis

Jets give Chan Gailey an athletic QB to coach up. Look for them to re-sign Fitz or bring in Hoyer on a short term contract and start working Lynch in on special packages while they groom him to take over.


21. Washington Redskins: Reggie Ragland LB Alabama

Thumper for the middle of their D.


22. Houston Texans: Corey Coleman WR Baylor

They give Osweiler a deep threat to pair with Hopkins.


23. Minnesota Vikings: Laquon Treadwell WR Ole Miss

Vikings give Bridgewater a big target. Poor 40 time drops him here but super productive and plays faster than timed.


24. Cincinnati Bengals:  Josh Doctson WR TCU

Bengals complete the WR run with a weapon to go opposite Green.


25. Pittsburgh Steelers:  William Jackson III CB Houston

Steelers find good value for a big need.


26. Seattle Seahawks: Germain Ifedi OT Texas A&M

Seattle needs to rebuild their O-Line


27. Green Bay Packers: Vernon Butler DT Lousiana Tech

Packers try to fill BJ Raji's enormous shoes.


28. Kansas City Chiefs: Eli Apple CB Ohio State

Chiefs reach a bit to try to replace Sean Smith


29. Arizona Cardinals: Ryan Kelly C Alabama

One of their few needs.


30. Carolina Panthers: Cyrus Jones CB Alabama

Panthers look to soften the blow of losing Josh Norman


31. Denver Broncos: Connor Cook QB Michigan State

Cook may be most NFL ready QB and may be needed right away for Super Bowl Champs.



Thoughts on possible selections at 19

Mike Watkins

@merk256

4/24/16


Who I want to draft


-N.Spence: Spence is my top choice for the Bills. Yes he will need some work but the talent is there especially from a pass rushing standpoint. In a passing league that trait is at a premium


-S.Lawson: Athletically Lawson could be criticized but I watched him make to many plays in college not to think he is going to be a good to very good player on the next level. His ability to move around in the defense is valuable for what the Bills run


-E.Ogbah: If the Bills were a stratight 4-3 team Ogbah would be the top guy on the list. It will be an adjustment to a 3-4 OLB but given the amount of time spent in Nickel and Dime passages the it shouldn’t be to much of an issue


I’d be happy with


-A.Billings: Any 3-4/Hybrid needs a center of gravity NT. Billings is that and the bonus is that it will allow Dareus to move out to DE and 3 tech in passing downs which is a far better use of his talents


-J.Reed: One of the safest players the Bills could take at 19. Would be an instant contributor and at worst a good player for a decade


-S.Rankins: I don’t love the fit but his talent especially his ability to rush the passer would make an immediate impact. He’d be a great replacement down the line for Kyle Williams


-C.Coleman: of the WR’s Coleman to make would be the best fit for what the Bills have and need


-T.Decker: Could Start at RT immediately and would provide protection if a long term deal cant be worked out with Glenn. More of a RT on Sundays though


-J.Conklin: See Decker


Don’t love it but don’t hate it


-L.Floyd: A lot of really good tape and a lot of bad tape. Has the versatility that I like and so does Rex


-D.Lee: If the Bills didn’t have the Patriots twice a year he would be farther down. Athletically has everything you want. Instincts are sub par however


-R.Ragland: I think he’ll be good, but he’ll never be great due to limitations in coverage


-L.Treadwell: I like the player but I wouldn’t be thrilled with the fit in terms of what the Bills already have at the skill positions.


-M.Alexander: One of the more underrated players in the draft. I like the way Alexander plays. He also provides protection if Gilmore gets away


-A.Robinson: With his physical skills he shouldn’t even been on the board at 19. His engine runs a little to cool for my liking. If they can get that engine to run hot it’d be a very good pick


-P.Lynch: I’m not the biggest Lynch fan but I would like the aggressiveness in getting this QB spot figured out


-C.Cook: There is just something off about Cook. His accuracy is a red flag and so some off the field rumors. But the kid did step up a lot for the Spartans


-J.Doctson: See Treadwell


Think it’s a reach but I like the player, but they should’ve moved back


-V.Butler: There is a lot to like about Butler and how he fits the Bills defense, but I don’t ever see him being elite


-K.Correa: There is a lot of potential but to many times he should have dominated but didn’t


-C.Jones: The talent is there but to many times I watched him mail it in for extended stretches


-V.Bell: Best Safety in the draft not named Ramsey but they could move down into the late first and safely take him in my opinion


-W.Fuller: Big fan of Fullers but his drops will make you drink. But he will make opposing teams pay multiple times deep. At worst he’s Mario Manningham, at best Lee Evans


-J.Bullard: A lot of physical talent that needs a lot of work. Get him a good DL coach and he’ll pay big dividends. Still you want more refinement in the first


-M.Thomas: likely the most well rounded WR in the draft. Has a low ceiling in my opinion though


-S.Cravens: To much of a tweener to use a first round pick on. Will make a nice situational player for a team. Good instincts though


Reach and I don’t like the player


-J.Spriggs: Solid athlete, but will get bulldozed on Sundays


-G.Ifedi: He has a 1st round grade but I don’t see it. I see a project that will take multiple years to straighten out


-R.Nkemdiche: Physical monster but puts forth about zero effort most of the time and the off the field is a big red flagg


-E.Apple: I have a third on him. I don’t like his instincts at all and he’s not nearly as physical as the scouts are making him out to be

The fireworks have already begun with the two block buster trades for the first 2 picks in the draft. Now that those moves have been made, the top of the should be fairly predictable.


For the Bills, I see them looking to add Defensive talent early and often that fit Rex's scheme. Getting a big space eating NT will be a critical add and I see them pulling the trigger on Baylor DT Andrew Billings with their first pick. Ragland would be a consideration, but similar 2 down thumpers can be had later in the draft. 


Whaley seems driven to add a QB as either leverage or precaution if Tyrod walks. The best case scenario is for Tyrod to take that next step, stay healthy and be the Bills franchise QB they have been seeking for 2 decades, but I understand investing a high pick as a precaution if that doesn't happen. The one guy in this draft that most intrigues me and may end up being the steal of the whole thing, is Christian Hackenberg. Yes, his numbers were awful his last 2 years at Penn State, but he was put in a near impossible situation. He really should have bailed on Penn State after O'Brien left for the Texans. There is no doubt his play degenerated and he has developed major breakdowns in his fundamentals, especially footwork that will need to be completely broken down and reworked. However, look at his freshman tape when he actually had some talent around him and a coach that had him in a system best suited for his talents. Hackenberg has more control at the line of scrimmage than I have seen given to a college QB since Luck came out. He is best suited to a pro-style play action offense where he can make throws from the pocket or on controlled roll outs. With a solid line and some time to eliminate the bad habits developed behind one of the worst O-Lines in the country the past two seasons, he could develop into a franchise QB and may end 3 years down the road as the best QB in this class. That's a lot of ifs, but I think in the second round, it is well worth the risk. 


The rest of the Bills draft is listed at the bottom of my mock. look for at least 2 LB's to be added, another WR to compliment Sammy and a safety or corner. Adding competition for the RT position is also a need. 

2016 Mock Draft V 1.0














Mike Watkins

@merk256

4/6/16


1.Titans: L.Tunsil, Ole Miss, OT

2.Browns: J.Goff, Cal, QB

3.Chargers: D.Buckner, Oregon, DE/DT

4.Cowboys: J.Ramsey, Florida State, S/CB

5.Jaguars: J.Bosa, Ohio State, DE

6.Ravens: M.Jack, UCLA, LB

7.49ers: C.Wentz, SDST, QB

8.Eagles: V.Hargreaves, Florida, CB

9.Buccaneers: R.Stanley, Notre Dame, OT

10.Giants: E.Elliot, Ohio State, RB

11.Bears: S.Lawson, Clemson, DE/LB

12.Saints: S.Rankins, Louisville, DT

13.Dolphins: M.Alexander, Clemson, CB

14.Raiders: J.Reed, Alabama, DT

15.Rams: P.Lynch, Memphis, QB

16.Lions: J.Conklin, Michigan St, OT

17.Falcons: E.Ogbah, Oklahoma St, DE/OLB

18.Colts: K.Dodd, Clemson, DE

19.Bills: N.Spence, E.Kentucky, DE/OLB: If the draft plays out this way the Bills would be wise to move back if possible. Getting a 2nd rounder this year or next would be the ideal situation.


That said I don’t project trades in my mocks. Staying here the Bills have to get the most bang for their buck and while the options are plentiful I think Spence makes the most sense. Yes he has off the field issues but the talent will likely be to much for the Bills to pass on


The pass rush needs an injection of youth and talent. Spence is relentless and fits the mold of what the Bills would like to do on defense. I compare him to T.Suggs of the Ravens, Rex Ryan knows the value of having that type of player


20.Jets: L.Floyd, Georgia, LB

21.Redskins: A.Robinson, Alabama, DT

22.Texans: C.Coleman, Baylor, WR

23.Vikings: L.Treadwell, Ole Miss, WR

24.Bengals: A.Billings, Baylor, DT

25.Steelers: W.Jackson, Houston, CB

26.Seahawks: R.Nkemdiche, Ole miss, DT

27.Packers: D.Lee, Ohio State, LB

28.Chiefs: R.Ragland, Alabama, LB

29.Cardinals: T.Decker, Ohio State, OT

30.Panthers: V.Bell, Ohio St., S

31.Broncos: C.Cook, Michigan State, QB

Top 5 Offense, March

Mike Watkins

@merk256

3/27/16









QB

1.J.Goff, Cal

2.C.Wentz, SDST

3.C.Cook, Michigan St

4.K.Hogan, Stanford

5.P.Lynch, Memphis


RB

1.E.Elliot, Ohio State

2.T.Ervin, San Jose St

3.D.Henry, Alabama

4.D.Booker, Utah

5.CJ Prosise, Notre Dame


WR

1.L.Treadwell, Ole miss

2.C.Coleman, Baylor

3.S.Shepard, Oklahoma

4.M.Thomas, Ohio State

5.W.Fuller, Notre Dame


TE

1.A.Hooper, Stanford

2.H.Henry, Arkansas

3.J.Adams, South Carolina

4.J.McGee, Florida

5.N.Vannett, Ohio State


OT

1.L.Tunsil, Ole Miss

2.R.Stanley, Notre Dame

3.T.Decker, Ohio State

4.J.Conklin, Michigan State

5.G.Ifedi, Texas A&M


IOL

1.C.Whitehair, Kansas State

2.J.Garnett, Stanford

3.N.Martin, Notre Dame

4.V.Alexander, LSU

5.R.Kelly, Alabama

Top 5’s Defense, March

Mike Watkins

@merk256

3/14/16

 

4-3 DE

1.E.Ogbah, Oklahoma State

2.J.Bosa, Ohio State

3.S.Lawson, Clemson

4.N.Spence, Eastern Kentucky

5.Y.Ngakoue, Maryland


 

3-4 DE

1.D.Buckner, Oregon

2.J.Reed, Alabama

3.V.Butler, Louisiana Tech

4.A.Robinson, Alabama

5. R.Nkemdiche, Ole Miss

 

DT

1.A.Billings, Baylor

2.S.Rankins, Louisville

3.V.Butler, Louisiana Tech

4.A.Washington, Ohio State

5.A.Robinson, Alabama

 

3-4 OLB

1.S.Calhoun, Michigan State

2.Y.Ngaloue, Maryland

3.N.Spence, Eastern Kentucky

4.L.Floyd, Georgia

5.K.Fackrell, Utah State

 

ILB

1.M.Jack, UCLA

2.R.Ragland, Alabama

3.J.Perry, Ohio State

4.D.Lee, Ohio State

5.J.Schobert, Wisconsin

*J.Smith, Notre Dame: TBD after med recheck in April

 

CB

1.M.Alexander, Clemson

2.V.Hargreaves, Florida

3.J.Ramsey, Florida St

4.K.Fuller, VT

5.W.Jackson, Houston

 

S

1.J.Ramsey, Florida St

2.V.Bell, Ohio St

3.K.Joseph, West Virginia

4.J.Cash, Duke

5.D.Thompson, Boise State

Taking a look at the Bills Free Agents

Mike Watkins

@merk256

2/14/16


Cordy Glenn: This is going to be a tricky deal to work out. The Bills really can not front load it at all given their cap space situation. So with that in mind they have to make this deal with it back loaded, which runs a risk, if Glenn falls apart it will be very difficult to rid themselves of the deal.


From an on the field perspective I consider Glenn a pretty safe bet to be rock solid for at least the next six years. The off the field is focused around his health troubles from the past year. I don’t think it’s a major concern but it is something that has to be accounted for


In the end though the Bills have to get this deal done. If they don’t it will force the Bills to have a pretty dramatic shift in their offseason strategy and priorities. They would have a huge hole on the left side of their line and lose a LT that is a great fir for what Roman wants to get done


Prediction: The Bills tag him and eventually get a long term deal done


Richie Incognito: He wants to be in Buffalo, the Bills want him to be in Buffalo, and the fans want him in Buffalo. This seams like a no brainer. The only thing that can derail it is if Incognito starts asking for elite money. Given his age he needs to be reasonable but so do the Bills. He’s the best OG they have had on the team in years and he fits the mentality of both the team and the city


I think if the Bills can lock up the left side of the OL for at least the next 2 years it will make the offseason a success. Its important for a team that wants to win now to not open up anymore holes in the roster


Prediction: If there is one deal I’m confident the Bills will get done its this one.


Nigel Bradham: Overall I like Bradham I think he is a solid to good LB in a 4-3 system. The problem is he is a terrible fit in the 3-4 hybrid that Rex likes to run. I have been banging this drum for quite some time now. The second Rex Ryan got hired it was bad news for Bradham.


If its me I don’t even offer Bradham a deal. I think the Bills can, need, and will upgrade the LB position this offseason. I don’t think the Bills can afford to sink any type of real money into a player who does not fit the scheme


Prediction: Bradham leaves and lands with either the Eagles, Giants, or Rams


Ron Brooks: I had high hopes for Brooks coming out of LSU. I actually thought he would make a better FS than a CB coming out of college and at the very least be a good ST contributor. The reality is though Brooks is an average CB at best and an ok ST player.


Prediction: Not resigned and will sign a 1 or 2 year deal for a team looking for experience on the back end of the roster


Percy Harvin: I’ve never been that big a fan of P.Harvin. I’ve felt that he has been overrated for awhile and that offenses get tied up trying to force the ball to him. With that said I actually like what I saw from him in a Bills uniform in a Roman offense that he looked comfortable in.


I would like the Bills to attempt to bring him back but it has to be at a reduced cost. He is the playmaker and deep threat that I think the Bills want across from Watkins but his injury history has to limit the compensation


Prediction: I think the Bills bring him back on a one maybe two-year deal. He seems to have taken to the coaching staff and ownership. He also had a go rapport with Tyrod Taylor before injuries ended his season


Alex Carrington: Solid vet who fits the defense. I think he is quality depth and will be brought back on a year year deal


Josh Johnson: I think Johnson could be a quality back up. He knows the system and has a decent physical skill set. He is worth bringing to camp as a 4th QB with a decent shot to hang around


RFA


Corbin Bryant: Can’t imagine the Bills don’t bring him back. Only thing that may stop this is if another team is really desperate on the DL and overpay him. I don’t see that happening


Bacarri Rambo: Of the RFA’s I think Rambo will draw the most interest from other teams. He is better than a back up and could be a 16 game starter on a team lacking Safety talent. I think Rambo grew a lot over this past season.


Chris Hogan: I like Hogan but I think the Bills are looking to go in another direction at the position. I think Hogan lands somewhere else


Ty Powell: There was talk of Powell landing a starting spot before a devastating injury took his 2015 season. I think there will be a mutual interest in him staying in Buffalo so I expect him to return and hopefully at the very least give the Bills depth they lacked at the position last year


Stefan Charles: I’m a fan of Charles but I think it’s a 50/50 shot he returns. He is a good fit but seems to disappear a lot.


MarQuis Gray: Gray was MIA all year in Roman’s offense. I do not expect him to be retained

Drafting a QB and Tyrod Taylor

Mike Watkins

1/31/16

@merk256

The Bills GM Doug Whaley has been pretty open about the fact that he will add a QB in the offseason. This player will most likely come via the draft. I for one am absolutely on board with this train of thought and strategy, the Bills should add another QB and I don’t really mind if it’s a high draft pick


For the past few years I have been stating that the Bills need to attack this QB issues via the numbers game. This is the approach the Seahawks took and to date it has worked out well for them. As a franchise with the way the league is set up you have to keep acquiring talent to exhaustive measures until you find a QB you believe can get you to and win a Super Bowl. If you are not doing this, you are likely spinning your wheels as a franchise.


First and foremost, I like Tyrod Taylor as a player and believe he has a legit shot at being this QB for the Bills. He far exceeded anyone’s expectations this year. That said I have seen this movie before. A QB shows you glimpses of potential, you then in turn project outward his development into thinking you have a franchise QB. Problem is, that development doesn’t always happen. Then you are stuck once again with nothing in the pipeline and back at square one.


This is why I’m for drafting a QB to place behind Taylor. While I believe he has earned the right to go into camp and the season as the starter, I don’t believe he has shown enough to call it day at the position and declare him the guy for the next 10 years. The Bills have to keep the search up and keep acquiring talent at the position. If Taylor falters than you already have the next player developing in the system and ready to get his shot.


Worst case scenario is that you end up with a develop QB that is a tradeable asset and or a quality back up for a 4 year stretch. The downside to this strategy is minimal at best and it’s a process that should keep repeating itself at least every 2 and 3 years.


The reality is its been 16 years since the Bills have been in the playoffs. The quickest way to break that is to get a franchise QB on the roster. They may have that with Tyrod Taylor but the Bills can absolutely not afford to not keep addressing the position. Once you have a clear franchise QB you will not care what you spent in finding that QB.

5 Senior Bowl Players I’m most interested in this week

Mike Watkins

@merk256

1/25/16


1.Tyler Ervin, San Jose State: I’ve been a big fan of Ervin all year. He has good vision and is a one cut and go RB. His size would suggest he is just an edge runner that you try and get in open space but he is a lot tougher runner than that size would indicate. I liken him to Chris Johnson when he came out of East Carolina. Ervin is explosive and should shine in Mobile


2.Cody Whitehair, Kansas State: Whitehair has been the most underrated OL in college all year. I have a fringe first on him now and he could lock himself into the later first after this week. Whitehair has the ability to play all 5 positions on the OL. I have him destined as a very good starting OG and that would be his ideal spot


3.Kyler Frackell, Utah St: I watched Frackell play a couple times this season and he played well. I have recently watched more of his games and I’m pretty convinced he is going in the first round. He always seems to be in the right place at the right time. He also plays with very good leverage, speed, and power. He is an excellent overall athlete and 3-4/Hybrid teams will have him very high on their boards. I want to see how he handles the competition this week


4.Jake Coker, Alabama: The more I watch of Coker the more I like him as a development project on the NFL level. He has an NFL arm and throws a nice deep ball. He also has better accuracy than you would think. For a team that is looking for a project to eventually trade or maybe have a shot to develop into a starter Coker is one to keep an eye on


5.Sterling Shepard, Oklahoma: I’ve been a big fan of Shepard for a couple years now. He’ll never be the biggest or fastest WR on the field, but he knows how to get open. I liken him a lot to Wayne Chrebet. Wherever he lands he’ll make an instant impact from the slot and I imagine become his QB’s favorite target relatively early in the season

Taking a look in January at what the Bills could do at 19

Mike Watkins

@merk256

1/23/16


Now that a blizzard has hit NYC I have some time to write again. First item up is taking a look at where the Bills could go with the 19th in the first round. This is the lowest pick the Bills have had in the first round in a long time. The draft overall is deep and not really top heavy, so the Bills should be sitting in a good spot for what they need to address.


So first lets take a quick look at what the Bills need


ILB: This is one of the weakest spots on the defense. The starters are average at best and there is little behind Brown and Bradham(Who is likely gone). The Bills have to take at least one LB in this draft and should probably take two


OLB/Pass Rush: Outside of Hughes the Bills like ILB have very little to show. They need a player somewhere else that can supply some type of pass rush


OT: If the Bills can not get Glenn under contract this becomes an even bigger need. Even if they do however Henderson nor Mills are 16 game starters on the right side. Henderson you can live with as your back up swing OT and Mills should be brought to camp to fight for a roster spot as experienced depth


DL: Mario Williams will be gone, Kyle Williams is on the wrong side of 30, and Dareus should really be moved from NT to get the most out of him. The Bills shockingly have a lot of issues on the area of the team that at this point last year no one was worried about. Its time to inject it with youth and players that fit what Rex wants to do


QB: The number 2 absolutely needs an upgrade in the worst way and while Taylor showed a good amount the Bills have been down that road before. They need to keep acquiring talent at the spot whether they have a guy or not


WR: The Bills have a bona fide franchise WR in Watkins. What they need across from him is another WR that can beat one on ones on a consistent basis. Woods is good but he’s a notch below a true number 2 WR. He is a great number 3 however


S: I have been harping on this all year, the Bills must drastically improve the play of their S’s this up coming year. The loss of A.Williams was brutal to the group. Graham and Rambo were very average through the year.


CB: In a Rex Ryan defense lets face it he is always going to want talented CB’s. The more he has the more exotic things he can do with his front 7


So with these needs on the board what will the Bills likely do at 19? Obviously a ton will happen before now and April but you can still logically ball park it in January. You first start with a reduction of the needs list.


QB is first off the board. I think that Taylor showed enough where the Bills wont use their first rounder on one.


Next off the board is Safety. The way the board is shaking out right now there will not be a Safety worth taking with the 19th selection in the draft. The second round is where this position gets real plumb


I’m going to remove WR next. Unlike the past few years the talent pool this year is a little light. That coupled with the fact that I personally think the Bills are looking for a deep threat that can take the top off defenses across from Watkins as opposed to what most fans think they are looking for in a big red zone target WR. I don’t think Treadwell will make it to the Bills and even if he does I’m not sure that’s what they are looking for


OT is next off the board. Here is the reality, the Bills have a very good OL coach in Kromer and Roman is an OL guy. Both these guys are going to think that they can find diamonds in the rough later in the draft. This will allow the Bills to pass early on the OL. Honestly, I cant say I disagree. I think their coaching ability allows this team that luxury


You would think removing CB would be a no brainer considering the Bills have Darby and Gilmore. The reality is though I do not think Rex is going to be able to resist taking M.Alexander if he is there. The good news for Bills fans who don’t want a CB selected at 19 is that I think Alexander will be gone and I think that is the only CB he would take at 19


That leaves LB and DL. LB is an interesting case right now with this draft. In September you had 2 top 10 talents at the position in J.Smith and M.Jack with Smith arguably being the most talented player in the draft regardless of position. Two brutal knee injuries have put some doubt into these players ability and R.Ragland forced his way into the conversation through the season.


Anyone of the 3 would be a good fit for what Rex does and what the Bills are up against in the AFC East. The questions then become can the Bills afford to wait on a talented LB to get fully healthy if its and or can they wait for a rookie LB to learn this complex defense fast enough to make an impact this year?


That’s a tough question because anyone of the three have a very high football IQ so one would think they could grasp enough to start the season and then gradually produce more and more each week

Another factor is that a lot teams view LB as the RB of defense in that you can find them anywhere in the draft. You don’t have to use a day one pick to find an impact player at the position. That and the LB group this year is the deepest its been in years and is the deepest position in the draft. So with that said I think the Bills will add a vet and take a LB on day 2 or early day 3


That leaves us with DL and OLB/Pass Rush, which happens to be the consensus of the vast majority of people when it comes to the Bills at 19.


First OLB/Pass rush out side of possibly L.Floyd from Georgia I am not really seeing any real possibility at 19 for the Bills. You are starting to have some risers like N.Spence with his off the field issues and Kyle Frackrell stock is also on a steady uphill climb. I don’t know that either will make it up to 19 though


Rex for the most part likes a a couple things in his DL. First he wants a center of gravity NT that controls the LOS and sucks up blockers so his LB’s can roam free. From a pass rush standpoint he requires his NT to push the center of the pocket making it more difficult for the opposing QB to step up into the pocket to avoid the rush and make throws. Any sacks this NT gets is purely a bonus. He technically has that in Dareus but Dareus would be far better suited for the next group.


In the other group of DL that Rex prefers he needs two and ideally three DL that he can rotate through the game. These players need to be comfortable playing both inside and out along with the ability to two gap to be stout against the run, long enough to engage OT on the edge, and stout enough to suck up blockers when need be for the LB’s. These players are not easy to find


Of the two it is easier to find the NT later in the draft then it is to find the hybrid DE/DT Rex prefers. So who are the suspects right now at 19


B.Buckner, Oregon: Would be a great fit but He will be snatched up long before the Bills go on the clock


A.Robinson, Alabama: I like Robinson but I have yet to see this all world player he is often describe as. I think he his a high floor but I think his ceiling is limited compared to others


J.Reed, Alabama: Again the player I am seeing isn’t matching up with the player I am reading about. He’s a safe selection and likely 10 year starter but I don’t see the ceiling others see. I do see him more as a more instant plug and play player, more so than Robinson


R.Nkemdiche, Ole Miss: if you could draw up a DL for Rex Ryans Scheme it would be Nkemdiche. Problem is he runs way to hot and cold. When he’s on though he’s next to unblockable. He has the physical talent to be the first pick but doesn’t possess the drive


E.Ogbah, Oklahoma St: I don’t love the fit but I think he can be productive given how well he uses power and is stout against the run


A.Washington, Ohio State: I think Washington has been one of the more underrated players this season and would be a good fit. Has some off the field issue that need to be addressed


C.Nassib, Penn State: Very high football IQ and plays with good leverage but lacks great athletic ability. Height and weight he fits and mentally he will impress


So what do I think will happen in January at 19. Right now I think the Bills are going to be enamored with Nkemdiche raw talent. They think they are going to be able to get more out of him than other staffs would be able to. However they have been burned numerous times on this concept before with two great examples in Coples and Milliner. Those failures I think will push the staff and the front office away from Nkemdiche


Reality is though I think I have to agree with the consensus right now that J.Reed is the front runner for the Bills at 19. The ability to play inside and out is valuable to the Bills and Rex. His work ethic is unquestioned and the fact that he is playing in a similar style defense will only help with the learning curve. The ability to be able to play, start, and contribute right away will have a lot of value to the Bills who are looking to end a 16 year playoff drought


Side Note Dark Horse: On a final passing note if you are looking for a dark horse candidate for the Bills, I think its WR Corey Coleman from Baylor. He’s arguably the best vertical thereat in the draft and many liken him to Desean Jackson. Again, I think the Bills are more interested in a deep threat than a larger high pointing type WR

It's Win or Go Home Time Again in Buffalo

by Anthony D. Macari @nflwarroom

This was the year it was going to be different. New Owners willing to spend the big bucks. A high profile big name coach with a resume that includes 2 AFC Championship appearances. The team was coming off it's first winning season since 2004. Big name, high price talent brought in and big money spent keeping talent here.

So why after 11 games, are the Bills once again on the brink of irrelevance? How did so much promise, so much talent on the roster not translate into more wins? The blame has to be laid squarely at the feet of Bills HC, Rex Ryan. His headline making bluster and rhetoric was a welcome breath of fresh air from the parade of stoic coaches that have come and gone through the doors at One Bills Drive the past decade plus, but without results, its just hot air.

The Defense has not bought into Rex's scheme and Rex's scheme has not matched his talent in place. Complaints from the Cold Front, who have been at or near the top in sacks and pressure the past 3 seasons, about being directed to drop in coverage on passing downs is at the core of the problem. Rex's scheme is based on confusion and disguising blitz packages to generate pressure, while relying on talent in the secondary and  mistakes to force turnovers. The problem is, the Bills D-Line, its unquestionable strength, can do that all by themselves if unleashed. The Bills D-Line feed off of each other and thrive on getting sacks and generating pressure. You can tell the effort level is not there. Dareus taking plays off, Mario taking plays off. Of course injuries are playing a part. losing Mario for the end of last weeks loss and Kyle for the season is huge, but teams all over the league are dealing with injuries this time of year. Rex needs to find the right fit for THIS team, not his past Jets teams. He needs to either get his players to buy in 100% to his scheme, to him or he needs to adapt his D to fit what  do best.

On Offense, I get the commitment to the run, but there has to be a way to get more passes to Clay and Watkins. The message finally seems to have gotten through about Watkins, but using Clay to keep teams honest in covering the middle of the field or in the Red Zone has not been exploited. I love the big play potential of Tyrod to Watkins, but sometimes its enough to pass for 5 yards on 3rd and 4. Clay is being covered 1 on 1 in the middle of the field and Watkins is seeing off coverage. Take that quick 5 when available, too many of the Bills passing plays take far too long to develop. McCoy is a pleasure to watch, but he can't be expected to move the chains on the ground all game long without a complimentary short passing game.

The red hot Texans come to town. A win, keeps the Bills in the chase with 4 to go. They will have 2 winnable road games against up and down NFC East opponents, then come home to  finish things off against the Cowboys without Romo and Rex's old team the Jets. To  guaranty making the playoffs, the Bills likely have to win them all. If not, a season that started with so much hope will be placed on top of the pile heap of disappointments.

Thoughts on Week 12

Mike Watkins

@merk256

11/30/15


-Everyone is in agreement that Rex Ryan lost this game and I’d have to agree that his lack of in game ability was painful to witness. The Bills need to overhauled their challenge protocol and by all accounts they will do so


-The injuries are piling on top of one another now and its becoming increasingly hard to overcome. The DL missed Mario Williams in the worse way on Sunday. Not having him in there really handicapped the Bills in what they could do. He gives the Bills the ability to just rush four and get at least some pressure. Without him though its next to impossible


-Rex needs to work on in game adjustments. By half time the Chiefs had adjusted to the Bills game plan and the Bills never adjusted back. Now I can see why as the Bills are a bit handicapped in that none of their LB’s or S’s are particularly good at blitzing but some adjustment should have been made


-Good things happen when you throw to Sammy Watkins and that was evident in the first half as Watkins beat everything thrown his way. The Bills and Taylor for some reason decided to move away from Watkins in the second half. It was a mistake and I think they will see it even more during the film review


-There are three players that need to be involved and involved early every game. McCoy, Watkins, and Clay. Clay had a couple of receptions but not enough. He needs to be involved in the game plan more. Clay clicking off first downs will do nothing but open up things for Sammy which will in turn opening up things for McCoy


-RT is a big problem for the Bills and its only going to get worse with Watt and Clowney on the horizon. Henderson is still the best current option but the Bills better have a plan to assist Henderson as best they can come Sunday or its going to get real ugly


-While the sweep has been the bread and butter for the Bills run game this year they are going to have to get better in other running plays as teams are keying on it more and more. Also A.Dixon has no business running this play at any time


-Gilmore and Darby finally had a really rough game. It was bound to happen but it will be interesting to see how they respond against one of the top 3 WR’s in the game in Hopkins


-Tyrod Taylor is coming along but still has a long way to go. Decisions need to be made faster and he was to open up the whole field by using it


-Robey Will be kicking himself over that missed INT for a long time


-Watching McCoy with the ball in his hands is worth the price of admission


Rest of the league


-I think its now a legit question to ask if matt Ryan is actually a franchise QB. I used to think it was crazy to think otherwise but the more I watch him play and flounder the more I am starting to think it’s a legit question. Falcons have a tough decision coming up this offseason


-On the other hand Tannehill clearly isn’t a franchise QB despite being paid like one. I’m not seeing any improvement with him over the past couple years. Yes he can pepper short passes and be decent on the intermediate in about 8 games a year. His decision making however has made about zero improvement


-The way Mike Zimmer uses A.Barr is impressive, you feel like there is two of him on the field


-Sad thing is, in the long run the loss to Denver will end up helping the Patriots. The pressure of an undefeated season now goes away.


-Its safe to say the party is over for Chip Kelly. He wanted full control and now he is experiencing the downside of that control because has no one to blame but himself for the state of the Eagles. He also has failed to adjust to a league that has clearly adjusted to him


-Cam Newton is the NFL MVP and its not close


-Jeff Fisher needs to be on the hot seat. The AFC West was ripe for the taking this year and he’s not even in with his Rams. There is more talent on that team than is being displayed on Sundays

Thoughts on Week 10

Mike Watkins

@merk256

11/13/15

 

-You are what your record say you are, but the reality of the situation is there is a drastic difference when the Bills have all three of Tyrod, McCoy, and Watkins in the lineup. When those three play the Bills present defenses with a multitude of issues. This is why I was not ready to give up on the season after a brutal loss to the Jaguars. If the Bills can stay relatively healthy they have the talent to go on a run to not only make the playoffs but be a factor


-Shady McCoy is absolutely electric when he is healthy. You can start to see why Eagles fans dropped their jaws when he was traded and why the Bills were ecstatic to get him. The cuts he makes almost defy physics. He will be a big reason why the Bills make a playoff push


-Saying Karlos Williams has a nose for the end zone is the understatement of the year. The guy is an extremely tough matchup for opposing teams with his size and speed. The “How did this guy last to the 5th round” statements are becoming more and more regular


-If there is a better combo of Starting CB’s in the NFL than Gilmore and Darby I haven’t seen them play yet. They seem to almost play off each other by trying to one up each other and its impressive to watch. Darby is right now the steal of the 2015 draft. You have a rookie playing at a very good vet level. That’s rarefied air for a CB. The future is very bright for both but Darby has the ability to be the best in the game by the time he’s 25 if he keeps working


-Sammy Watkins did not have a big night stat wise but he made a pretty clear statement to D.Revis that he can and will beat him. At a very critical juncture in the game Watkins absolutely abused one of the best CB’s in the game. When we get part 2 in Buffalo in week 17 I’m sure Watkins will be eager to make those stats pop more


-I thought for the most part Taylor spread the ball as best he could during the night. I think Clay could have been a little bit more involved given that the Jets really don’t have anyone who can cover him one on one


-This is the first game where I can say Colton Schmidt really was not very good overall. Hopefully he can shake it off because he is a real weapon for the team when he is on


-The Bills need to get R.Woods a little more involved earlier in the game. Watkins is without a doubt the top guy. With Woods though if you can find a way to get him 4-5 receptions a game it really makes the defense play more straight up and allows for bigger plays to be made by Watkins and McCoy


-The Bills really need to incorporate more screens into the game plan. They need something they can fall back on when they are getting blitzed non stop


-B.Rambo had been taking a lot of heat lately and honestly most of it was just. He however made play after play last night and deserves a ton of praise.


-The Bills really need to work on play clock management. Far too many times the Bills brought it right to the edge and were lucky a flag to didn’t come flying out. This mismanagement also led to burning three time outs which is completely absurd on multiple levels. It didn’t cost them a win this game but it could in the future


-The defense overall I thought looks like its heading in the right direction. They still have some drives where they get far out of position but those are starting to be cut down, especially over the past couple of weeks. There is still a ways to go but overall players are starting to execute better

Thoughts on Week 9

Mike Watkins

@merk256

11/9/15



 -What you witnessed on Sunday against the Dolphins is pretty much the exact vision Rex Ryan and Greg Roman had for their offense in the offseason. McCoy and Williams acting as a one two punch at RB with Watkins beating teams over the top to keep the defense honest. Its obviously not always going to click like that but each game that is what the Bills are aiming for

 

-The difference between Tyrod Taylor and EJ Manuel is literally night and day. The offense functions far better and the opposing defense is on edge the entire game due to Tyrod’s threat to run. The biggest separation is Taylors calmness in the pocket and the ability to hit the short and intermediate passes on a far more consistent basis. Taylor keeps making the statement that the QB problem is solved in Buffalo. There will still be some bumps in the road but Taylor continues to head in the right direction

 

-When McCoy and Williams are healthy it is a massive advantage for the Bills. The ability to have fresh legs in the game on a regular basis with two very talented back is a big advantage for the Bills. Each by themselves would be productive but when the two are combined their styles play off each other very well

 

-Watkins had himself a day. This year has been a rough one for Watkins. Injuries have kept him off the field and the frustration has boiled over into some social media outburst. Sunday Watkins took those frustrations out on B.Grimes and the Miami Dolphins. The Dolphins had absolutely no answer for Watkins all day and they paid for it dearly. Fans were reminded why he was the 4th overall pick in the draft. His combination of speed and power at the WR is very rare and difficult for opposing teams to stop. When Watkins is on the field he makes the entire offense better whether he is targeted or not

 

-The defense once again struggled for the majority of the game. The score may not reflect it but the lingering issues remain and the biggest one is that the pressure on opposing QB’s seems to be no where to be found most of the game. They changed a little but in the second half with Hughes leading the charge. The Bills are hopefully that it’s a sign that it has clicked for the team and that improvements will be seen in the near future

 

-I’ve been saying it all year and will continue to say it, the LB’s and S’s on this team are a big issue. They are in the wrong position nearly all day and none of them are particularly good at blitzing so its really handicapping what Rex Ryan can do

 

-Quite frankly I’m tired of hearing the excuses of what’s wrong with the defense. The execution is terrible and that lands on both the coaches and the players. If they are not understanding it then find a new way to teach it. To the players I don’t care if the coaches ask you to drop back every single snap, do it, and execute it they way they want it executed

 

-I’m starting to see why there were rumors of Rex wanting to be aggressive in getting David Harris to Buffalo via free agency and why the Jets were so dead set on not allowing that to happen. Harris would keep Bradham off the field(A clear weak link in the defense) and his intelligence in the system would have allowed a better understanding and application of the defense as a whole

 

-Tackling as a whole needs to be improved. To many plays are getting 10-20 yards tacked on just because of poor technique

 

-I’ve seen all I need to see from D.Moore, the Bills can move on

 

-A.Williams cannot get back soon enough

 

-John Miller was beat a few times by Suh but overall, for a rookie, held his own against one of if not the premier DT in the NFL

 

-R.Incognito needs to be the first extension out of the gate this offseason. He has turned his career and life around, and I’m happy to have him on the team and would like him to continue to be a Buffalo Bill

 

 

Rest of the NFL

 

-The Dolphins just are missing big pieces all along their roster. The back seven is a big problem out side of Jones. The problem is changing it over is going to be an issue with the deals that have been handed out

 

-A.Brown of the Steelers was like a man among boys against the Raiders. The cuts he was making against the Raiders DB’s were straight abusive

 

-I’ve been saying it since September, Cam Newton is the MVP of the league and its not close

 

-The league needs to come down hard on A.Talib. Intentionally trying to injure another player should result in a suspension, one that sends a clear message across the league

 

-Did anyone expect Jerry Jones to really say anything else about Hardy?

 

-Winston and Mariota to me both showed a lot this week. Both still have some ways to go but at least they are validating their selections

 

-The Bengals are for real. I like many have been holding back on that proclamation but its becoming harder and harder to argue against it

 

-B.Gabbert won an NFL football game as a starting QB, let me repeat that, B.Gabbert won a football game as a starting QB

Thoughts on Week 7

Michael Watkins

@merk256

10/27/15


(Due to travel for London I’m behind)


-Manuel: If you have been following me over the years, specifically the last three years, you know that I am not a EJ Manuel fan. I think he held a very talented FSU team back, he had no business being a first rounder, and he has shown that he really has no business taking snaps in the NFL. The London game solidified all these to the point where I hope I never have to see EJ take another snap in a Bills Uniform again.


I seriously don’t know what else people want to see out of him. Yea he’s 16 starts in and people act like it’s a travesty to say the book is written. I’m sorry its over for EJ the guy is a bust. I don’t need to see anymore. I didn’t need to see the first 16 starts to come to this conclusion. If anyone beyond this point says that they need to see more or EJ needs more time, thank them. You officially identified someone who knows absolutely nothing about QB’s in the NFL. File and remember it when they try to speak on it in the future


-Defense: I have no idea how anyone in their right mind can blame the defense for this. I saw a little bit here and there on twitter about it and also it was heard from time to time in the stands. The defense actually played well overall if you subtract the EJ gifts off the board. It would actually be a blow out in the Bills favor. Is there still work that can be done, absolutely. There effort though was wasted.


-Injuries: I really don’t like using injuries as any type of excuse except at one spot, QB. Its pretty clear at this point Tyrod Taylor is light years ahead of EJ Manuel. It also tells me this competition in camp was over far earlier than we realize. Its due to this that I’m not ready to mail the season in yet. Yes the Bills have put themselves in a very tough spot with a brutal loss but there is still a lot of the season left. Just like Buffalo took a tough unexpected loss, they are also fully capable of dishing one out


-Bad Call: Was it a bad call on Robey? Yes it was…Want to know whats worse? Allowing yourself to be in a position against a team you are clearly more talented then where a call like that can cost you the game. Bad calls happen, its apart of the game and unavoidable. Bad play to get you to the point where those calls cost you, is avoidable


-More McCoy: McCoy really is a rare athlete. This is the first time I have seen him in person and I have to say he has some of the quickest feet and lateral movement I have ever seen. It’s very impressive to watch live. I hope he can keep the injuries at bay the rest of the year because he really is what makes this offense go


-Honeymoon: It was a fun offseason and first few weeks of the season. For Rex however the talking needs to stop and the walking needs to start. He really needs to spend these next two weeks tweaking the defense to fit what he has. It doesn’t need major changes but something to give these guys confidence in what he is calling. Again the defense is good, better than most, but there is something just not clicking to get this defense to where it should be. I know area that is affecting it is the safety play, to date its been pretty awful. It can be shored up though


-Bye Time: As many have stated the Bye could not have come at a better time. If the Bills can come out of it with Taylor, Karlos Williams, Sammy Watkins, McKelvin, and a even healthier McCoy then the Bills are fully capable of making a run. That is a lot of reinforcement fire power to add to an already talented group


Random Thoughts


-Really was not able to see any of the other games on Sunday because I was trying to soak in as much of London as I could. I know this much, I’ll be coming back. London to me is a city every person should visit once in their lifetime. The culture and the history alone are worth it. I have visited many cities in 16 countries over the past 12 months and London is easily in the top 3. Do yourself a favor and plan yourself a trip out there. Believe me you wont regret it


-Couple of positions for the Bills on the upcoming draft to keep an eye on


+Safety: Rex can not be pleased with their play to date. Graham gives a great effort but the angles he takes and his late reactions are costing the Bills. Look for the Bills to spend a high pick on this position


+Linebacker: Bills need to replace Bradham and need a serious upgrade in depth here. I expect another high selection here.


+OL: With Glenn contract up, Incognito’s up, Henderson and Wood up and down play this unit right here could turn to shambles really quick. This is also why I have said signing Bradham over Glenn would be a terrible move by the Bills.


+WR: Much like the OL this position could fall off a cliff real quick after the season. It won’t be a popular selection but it might be needed, especially if things with Harvin head even more south

Thoughts on Week 6

Mike Watkins

@merk256

10/19/15


Bills


Evaluation Time: 6 Games in the defense is not looking good, and it was supposed to be the unit this team was supposed to lean on. The biggest issue to date is the million dollar mile that is the Bills DL has been ineffective at best. They and Rex are not on the same page and now the frustration is starting to show. The biggest issue is that they are far to often being restrained in their roles or being put in positions that do not take advantage of their talents.


In the past Rex has used exotic blitzes to generate pressure. In that the DL main goal was to eat blockers to create pass rushing lanes and to defend against the run. Doing that here with the talent the Bills have on the DL is a waste of their talents. I’m sorry but Mario Williams should not be dropping into coverage anymore than maybe once or twice over the course of a game. On the flip side counting on your back 7 to generate this pressure is a mistake and a waste of their talent as none of them are really good at blitzing besides Robey.


I understand this is what Rex has done in the past but its time to adjust what he does to what he has. The Bills can not continue to keep getting next to nothing from their DL in terms of pressure or sacks. Its time to uncork this front 4 and let them do what they do best.


Shady’s Return: Bills fans finally got a taste of what McCoy brings to the table. The OL had actually improved their run blocking dramatically over the past few weeks but the issue was they did not have a RB that was quick enough to take advantage of the lanes. McCoy did so today and looks like the running game might finally be hitting its stride


Watkins: After a very questionable interview with some quotes that are going to follow him Watkins had a nice game until he once again left the game with an injury. After playing through multiple injuries his rookie year Watkins health is now becoming a legit concern. You can call for the ball and want the targets all you want. If you can’t stay on the field it means nothing


Backups: Manuel did an ok job, but Tyrod Taylor has nothing to worry about. Manuel really has no business being a starting QB in this league. For some reason people still feel the need to ask for more chances for him. I don’t I saw enough at Florida State to know he’ll never be the guy for any team ever


Safety Issue: The Bills have a real issue on the back end of their defense. The safety play has not been good. Lucky for the Bills the starting CB play has been excellent to date limiting the exposure on the back end. With Safety being a key component of Rex defense I would expect an overhaul in the offseason but there isn’t to much they can do about it now


Go Goodwin: I’m tired of M.Goodwin. He seems like a good guy but he truly is not built for this sport. He can not even make it through two games without leaving injured. Due to a need because of injuries the Bills have little choice with him this year but I really do not even want to bring him to camp next year. He has become a waste of time and resources


MASH: The Bills are on a brutal string of injuries right now. Injuries are not an excuse for anything and that’s why you build depth. The thing that should be looked into however is the prevention. Bones break, things tear, but most other injuries are preventable. Its something to look into for the future


Big Picture: Reality is the Bills roster is riddled with injuries, they had their back up QB, and their top unit is not playing to its peak. Despite all of that the Bills were in it for the majority of the game. The Bills just have to push through at this point beat the Jags and get into the bye and hope the roster can mend itself


Rest of the NFL


-Everyone can look at the record all they want, reality is Peyton Manning is not he QB he used to be. He can still win games but he will be exposed against better defenses


-Miami did their new coach proud with a a beat down of the Titans. The DL finally showed up and the whole team finally showed the fight a lot of their fans had been waiting to see. Will it carry over through the season is yet to be seen but it’s a great start


-KC was a mess before they lost Charles, they are a full blown disaster right now and may be getting close to blow it up mode. Alex Smith is not the guy who can take a team to where it ultimately wants to go. I’d let Reid do the rebuild however


-I’ve been saying it for three weeks now and I’ll keep saying it, Cam Newton is the MVP of the league and its not close. He is doing a phenomenal job with very limited talent at the skill positions


-Its not a slow start anymore and its not missing Chancellor, the Seahawks have issues and are not the team of the past three years. The fight and drive is missing and if it continues the next thing that will be missing is the playoffs

Thoughts on Week 5

Mike Watkins

@merk256

10/12/15

 

Buffalo Bills

 

-Did you learn nothing, offside: The game could not have started any other way could it? After a penalty plagued Giants game the Bills decided they still had one in the tank and were called for an off sides on the kick off that negated a fumble recovery and took points off the board. The good news is it got better from there in terms of penalties. There is still a good amount of work to be done, For the time being though they seem to have drilled in the point that the inane 15 yarders for unsportsmen like conduct and late hits are completely and utterly unacceptable

 

-Trouble with the flats: The Bills in the early going had issues with covering anything out in the flats. It has been a weak spot that continually gets exploited. They were able to shore it up as the game went along today but its still an issue to keep an eye on

 

-Defense gassed, but good: You have to hand it to the defense over all today. For the vast majority of the game the Bills offense hung the defense out to dry. Yet despite being on the field all day they came through time and time again. Then they were able to end the game with two of their stalwarts, Dareus and Gilmore, coming up big in the clutch. They still have a ways to go but you are seeing more reacting than thinking out there

 

-Offense starts slow again: Second week in a row where the offense has struggled out of the gate. Now some of this can be attributed to the fact that the Titans knew the Bills almost had nothing at RB. Still its becoming a problem and the Bills will get stuck in holes they can not dig out of

 

-Tyrod Taylor: Have to hand it to him, when it mattered the most he took the game over. Its hard to decide what he biggest play of his was. The 25 yard TD run, The 25 yard 3rd down conversion, or the 40 plus yard completion to C.Hogan. All of them were extremely difficult and extremely clutch plays to do. Defenses are adjusting to him and he and Roman are adjusting back. This week it was his legs, next week it could be back to his arm or both

 

-The Hounds: Gilmore and Darby just keep getting better and better. Its getting to the point where opposing OC are just going to start staying away from them all together. When that happens you are going to see the productivity of this defense go through the roof. Gilmore is really good right now, Darby, has shot to be even better a year from now

 

-The Weak Spot: I’ve said it before and you’ve read it before, Bradham is a issue. The Bills have no better option right now but that won’t be the case in the offseason. He’s a decent player but he’s not made for this defense. I don’t care what the tackle numbers are. He’s limited in coverage and is an average at best blitzer.

 

-Watkins: It has been absolutely brutal for the Bills at the skill positions so far this year with the two best players on that side of the ball on the shelf. I do believe the Bills are doing the right thing however. People don’t remember it now but the New York City media tore OBJ up for the first month of his rookie season because he was dealing with a nagging injury. The Giants stood strong and allowed him to fully heal, then boom he had a great year. I think the result will be the same for Watkins. Could he have played the last two games? Likely, but at what cost? Then this calf issue would just follow him all year. The same can be said about McCoy. Help is on the way and the Bills are thinking long term as they should

 

-Lost in the Woods: Somehow someway the Bills have to get R.Woods going in this offense. He has to much talent to be used as little as he has. Against the Bengals I would like to see an effort to get him involved early. It will only help the overall offense in the end

 

-Center Issue: E.Wood in a very short time period has become an issue along the OL. He is getting beat far to often and the play needs to pick up. He has a big cap number and with the Bills up against it he may be one of the casualties if he keeps it up

 

 

Rest of the NFL

 

-The Titans are heading in the right direction. They have a good staff and they have the franchise QB to lead them. What they really need on offense is work horse RB. If they can add that to the mix the titans will be a force to deal with in 2016 and beyond

 

-I don’t know Greg Hardy, never met him and I don’t want to meet or know him. The nonsense just doesn’t stop with him and I cant imagine anyone but the Cowboys actually giving him any type of big money moving forward.

 

-Charles Woodson is the best defensive back of my generation and quite possibly the best athlete. The guy remains ageless and looks like he could play another 3 years. Its hard to believe that before Green bay picked him up he was thought of to be done.

 

-Brutal blow for the Chiefs in losing Charles. K.Davis will soften it but the guy who really needs to step up is A.Smith. Its time to move beyond being a game manager

 

-The Saints should and will blow up the roster this offseason. They should not however blow up the coaching staff beyond the defensive side of the ball. Sean Peyton is to good to just let walk out the door

 

-You can blame the Seattle record on a lot of things but I think the number one item is that they are not nearly as hungry as they have been. To many rings and to many contract extension

 

-We can all keep turning a blind eye to it but if you think Peyton Manning is still the same Peyton Manning we are watching different games. The defense is carrying them right now and that’s fine, fine until you meet the upper elites of the NFL

 

-Patriots have a legit shot at 19-0

 

-Arizona is far better and I mean FAR better than I thought they would be this year. Completely missed the boat on them.

 

-Rams should stay the course with Jeff Fisher. The reality is he needs to find his QB, and no Foles is not that guy

2016 Prospect Rankings Week 5

by Anthony D. Macari


Each week, Mike and I will post our Big Board prospect rankings. Mike posted his weekly list on Wednesday (See Below) and here is my initial rankings. At this point the rankings are based as much on expected performance as they are on actual production to this point. As the season goes on we will add to the list and factor in current season performance more heavily.


1. DE: Joey Bosa, Ohio State


Teams are game planning to stop Bosa but he has still been effective stuffing the run and generating pressure, if not piling up sacks. 


2. DT: Robert Nkemdiche, Ole Miss


Has finally started to live up to awesome potential. Freak athlete who has dominated inside despite facing constant double teams. Led the way up front for the big win vs Alabama.


3.  CB: Vernon Hargreaves III, Florida


Dynamic athlete who could be an impact shutdown play-making corner from day 1.


4. QB: Connor Cook, Michigan State


Cook has the size, arm strength and football IQ to be a franchise QB at the next level. 

5.  QB: Jared Goff, California


Extremely efficient and accurate. Seems to be comfortable as the spotlight grows and the competition gets stiffer. 


6. OT: Laremy Tunsil, Ole Miss


Prototypical blind side protector. Held out of game 1 as he is being investigated for accepting benefits from an agent.


7. OT: Ronnie Stanley, Notre Dame


Great size and athleticism. Experienced on both edges as well as inside at Guard. Active hands and gets to second level.


8. RB: Ezekiel Elliott, Ohio State


Bell cow back with an explosive first step. Talented Buckeye squad will once again ride his back to the playoffs and a possible back to back championship. 


9. LB: Myles Jack, UCLA


A 3 down backer with equally impressive pass coverage and rush skills. Can play inside or out in multiple fronts.


10. WR: LaQuan Treadwell, Ole Miss


Huge opportunity for the physical receiver to make an impact this week vs Alabama.

11. S: Jalen Ramsey, Florida State


Versatile S with corner like coverage skills but the size and attitude to step up in the box and help stuff the run.


12.  WR: Tyler Boyd, Pitt


Good size and burst. Will fight and win one on one jump balls.


13.  OT: Taylor Decker, OSU


The unquestioned leader of OSU's formidable line. 


14. OG: Vadal Alexander, LSU


Paving the way for RB Leonard Fournette and the nations most dominant running game. SEC O-Lineman of the week vs Auburn leading the way for over 400 yards rushing. The Orange will have their hands full this week.


15. DE: DeForest Buckner, Oregon


Versatile D-Lineman who projects best to 5 tech in a 3-4.


16. LB: Jaylon Smith, Notre Dame


17. WR: Mike Williams, Clemson


18. DE: Jordan Jenkins, Georgia


19. OT: Jack Conklin, Michigan State


20. DL: A'Shawn Robinson, Alabama


21. DL: Kenny Clark, UCLA


22. DE, Carl Nassib, PSU

Buffalo Bills Quarterly Report

Mike Watkins

@merk256

10/6/15


Here’s what I had to say about the first set of 4 games in my season preview


“-In the first 4 games I think it’s important the Bills come out of it at least 2-2 with the ideal wins being against the Patriots and Miami. It’s a tough quarter to call because the Bills could easily go 3-1 or 1-3. Going 1-3 wouldn't be a killer but it would put them in a hole from the get go that will possibly bite them later. 2-2 keeps the playoff pace”


So as it stands right now the Bills pretty much did what they had to do in the first quarter of the season to keep the playoff pace. It would have been nice to have the 2 wins come against the AFC east but at least one of them was. The other against the Colts could provide help down the road in a tie breaker.


Still, considering that the Bills have installed new systems on both sides of the ball along with having a new head coach and essentially a rookie QB, coming out of that slate of games .500 is right where they need to be. There is still a lot of room for improvement and hopefully getting healthier will accelerate that


Here’s what I stated for the next slate of 4 games against the Titans, Bengals, Jaguars, and Dolphins


“In the next 4 the Bills have in my opinion a good shot at 3-1 and even 4-0. It’s a good matchup for them in all 4 games. So if they can get 2-2 in quarter one and 3-1 in the second set of 4 that will be a nice record heading into the second have off the season”


3-1 is still the goal for this next slate of games and completely reasonable goal. Obviously if they could come out of the set 4-0 that would provide some breathing room down the line. 2-2 wouldn’t be a back breaker but it would start leaving little room for error down the road


Offense through the first four games


-Taylor has been a little bit up and down but that was to be expected. He is essentially a rookie QB so there will be mistakes but you would like to see him get better week to week and I think the Bills are seeing that right now. He never looks overmatched in the pocket and uses his legs when he has to. Overall he is validating the coach’s belief in him


-The Bills have some nagging injuries that are affecting them through the early part of the season. McCoy is a tough one to take because he was expected to be a big part of the Bills offensive attack in both the running and passing game. To date Karlos Williams has done a nice job picking up the slack but the Bills really need to get McCoy back into the fold. Watkins is another one that the offense misses and will benefit greatly from his return. The Bills made the choice, and rightly so, to just bite the bullet now and allow Watkins to get healthy so they can have him for the longer haul.


-The OL has been up and down through the first 4 games. They are still adjusting to a new style offense and QB so there were bound to be some bumps in the road. Miller is a big loss right now and it showed in the Giants game. The sooner he can get back the better. I still expect to see the unit to improve as the season moves along


-Charles Clay has been worth every penny to date. Between his impact in the passing game and his blocking in the run game it’s been refreshing to actually see a TE produce week in and week out. I imagine when Watkins and McCoy return his stats may go down a little but his impactful plays may actually go up due to more mismatches and space to operate in


-From a coaching standpoint I’ve liked what I have seen from Roman. His game plans have been good overall and his play calling has a rhythm to it that the Bills have lacked for the past couple of years. Its also pretty clear that the Bills are much more than this ground, pound, and three yards of dust offense that everyone expected them to be. Roman like to attack down field and does a good job of keeping opposing teams off balance.


Defense through 4 games


-The defensive line isn’t putting up the stats they have in the past couple of years here in the early going but that doesn’t mean they are not impacting the game. Opposing teams have now moved to getting the ball out as fast as possible when playing the Bills relying on YAC and short passes to move the ball. It’s had its up and down success to date so far and is really dependent on the type of QB the Bills have faced. It’s a small cause for concern but the Bills defensive staff is too good to allow this to continue all year and will adjust and the Bills DL’s impact will continue to grow through the year


-The LB’s I’m still not completely sold on. Yes they put up nice tackle numbers but have been exposed a number of times in coverage and over pursuit. Brown is still the best among the three and will be good player moving forward. Bradham is still up and down and Lawson is average at best


-The secondary has been pretty good for the most part with the story being how well R.Darby has played. He wasn’t expected to be a starter from the get go but a set back in McKelvins recovery opened up an opportunity and Darby has seized it. I liked Darby a lot coming out of college and he is far exceeding what I thought he would be early in his career. The safety position however is in a little bit of disarray. Graham is still learning the position and figuring out the angles. Rambo is a nice back up but he’s by no means a starter.


Overall thoughts


-Have to give Whaley credit, he has assembled a talented group of starters and has given the roster depth at the majority of the positions. He is afraid to make a move or a deal and in a league where trades are becoming more and more common he is showing his value. He deserves a good amount credit for this draft class to date. With no first round pick he has 3 selections that are performing at a first round level


-The hype could not have been any bigger for Rex to start the season. In reality there are going to be some bumps in the road as the staff installs their system and he gets to know what he has on the roster, what works and what doesn’t, and who he can count on. There is some worry about the defense but I think they will settle into a good groove real soon. There is to much talent on that side of the staff for the defense to continue to get better and better


-Greg Roman has been a breath of fresh air with the offense. He keeps it up and he will be among the most sought after coordinators for a head coaching spot this offseason. He has done a phenomenal job with Taylor and the overall offense looks far more crisp and balanced than it ever did under Marrone


-Put bluntly, the Bills have to get their collective heads out of their collective asses when it comes to penalties. You can be aggressive but there is a fine line between aggressive and stupid, the Bills have crossed that line far too many times this season. Controlled Chaos should be the goal the rest of the year

Thoughts on Week 4

Mike Watkins

@merk256

10/5/15

 

 

Bills

 

Tyrod the Rookie: Back when Taylor was named the starter I mentioned that despite Taylor being in the league for four years he is essentially a rookie. With that there are going to be some growing pains and some lulls if you will. For most of the game Taylor was in one of these Lulls. He was finally able to snap out of it towards the end but it was to little to late. This is what the Bills are going to have to live with for this year for better or worse. They have to hope that the talent they have at the skill positions can overcome it when it does

 

Rex Defense: Four games in and a defense that was supposed to be an all time great has some issues. The Bills blitz and they blitz a good amount of times. The problem is its leaving gapping holes in coverage and teams are taking advantage. The Bills have to start revaluating how they apply pressure to opposing teams QB’s. The vaunted and very expensive front four is not getting the pressure it should. The Bills should not have to rely on the back seven to apply pressure and nor should we see the Bills marquee DL dropping into coverage. Rex and company have to take a hard look at how they are rushing the passer because opposing teams will continue the same pattern until the Bills prove they can stop it

 

Clay Day: Anyone still think the Bills paid to much, seriously, anyone, anywhere? Its funny that back in the summer there was actually a week long stretch where people that that he would have a big impact on the offense. He has found his grove in this offense and has quickly become one of Taylors favorite targets. For a young QB that is critical

 

Watkins: The stats don’t show it nearly as much as they should but not having Watkins on the field is an issue for the Bills. Harvin and Woods are nice WR’s and make great complimentary contributions to what Watkins brings to the table. The problem is neither are close to the talent Watkins is and thus the opposing defense do not respect them as such. Watkins is the type of WR that can tilt the field. By that I mean a defense can not just handle him one on one because he is far to explosive with the ability to score from anywhere on the field. When that type of talent is on the field Safety’s have to move farther off the line of scrimmage and favor his side of the field. This opens up the offense for every other player. When he is not on the field opposing teams can play straight up and that makes thing a lot harder on an offense being led by a young QB.

 

McCoy: So can we just put to bed this notion that the Bills can trade away McCoy? I get it he has a big cap number and Williams has looked the part. Williams however found it a bit tougher to find the lanes that he had been finding. It’s not all due to McCoy absence but it’s part of it. Having McCoy back there keeps opposing teams on edge with a completely different style of running. Having Williams spell him benefits them both and is a nightmare for opposing teams. The sooner McCoy gets back the better, and I’m going to enjoy this combo for the next at least 3 years

 

Gilmore and Darby: By years end if not already, you can argue the Bills have the best set of CB’s in the NFL. I liked Darby coming out and thought he would be good. He is officially blowing those expectations out of the water. The rate at which he is getting better is quite frankly astonishing. You add in what Gilmore already is and the Bills have a phenomenal CB situation. To think the Bills are still not at full health yet with their CB’s is a scary thought.

 

Safety is an issue: I like C.Graham I think he is a useful player to have in the secondary. That said he is having some issues with getting the angles down required to play the position. It’s a problem right now and with Williams down its compounding it. Rambo is a nice depth player but that’s all he is. A.Williams when he finally returns needs to start playing with some restraint. His reckless abandoned style, while fun to watch, will make him a frequent visiter to the injury report. With a struggling Graham and an overmatched Rambo he needs to stay healthy

 

LB issues: Everyone can recite the tackle numbers of Brown and Bradham and that’s great they look good on paper. Problem is the opposing teams have identified both of them as an area they can attack in the passing game and they are doing it on a regular basis. They are out of position on a regular basis and due to that a lot of short dump offs are going for much larger gains than they should. I’ve said this before and I’ll keep saying it, extending out Bradham would be a mistake. He’s not as good as a lot of this fan base perceives him to be

 

 

Rest of The League

 

-The good news for Eagles fans and media is there is no secrete on who to blame for the increasingly bad situation the Eagles find themselves in. Look no farther than Chip Kelly. I wrote in the offseason that Chip should be careful what he wishes for in having complete control and that the Eagles had made a mistake giving him all of the authority when the league had moved away from that type of set up. The Chip Kelly to the Texas Longhorns watch is beginning to heat up

 

-The Dolphins are a disaster right now and Philbin along with their front office. I’m not sure a coaching change will in effect do anything. The Dolphins might as well ride out the year with Philbin

 

-I feel bad for the Browns, really I do. That is an absolutely horrible way to lose a game and being a fan of the Bills I have had many moments like that one

 

-Dallas Cowboy fans are finding out why I like to spend extra money on a solid back up QB. Its often looked up as a waste but when you need him to get you through a month or so of games at least playing .500 so you can remain in the playoff hunt it will be the best money you ever spent

 

-I don’t know the ins and outs of the deal the 49ers gave Kaep, but for their sake I hope they have an easy out. He and Tomsula are a disaster and ownership clearly backed the wrong pony this past offseason.


-Just when you think the raiders have turned the corner they go and drop one to the hapless Bears. The arrow is still pointing up but it’s a loss like that will take some air out of your balloon

 

-My early front runner for league MVP is Cam Newton. If there is another player carrying his team more than Newton I haven’t seen him yet

 

-Atlanta has become the team to watch this year. Their offense is explosive and there defense is night and day compared to last year. What Quinn has done with that team in a short amount of time has been impressive

 

-Bill O’Brien is completely on the hot seat yet but he should get ready for it to get warm

Thoughts on Week 3

Mike Watkins

@merk256

9/28/15


-There was a lot of pent up frustration after the Patriots beat the Bills down in week 2. The Bills let out that frustration on the Miami Dolphins in their home opener. The Bills started off fast and never looked back for the whole game. It was to date the most complete performance by the Bills yet under Rex Ryan

 

-The game on paper is a really bad matchup for the Dolphins and I said as much when I saw the Bills open up as 2.5 dogs. The Dolphins just don't have enough on offense to keep up with the Bills on defense. On the other side of the ball Miami doesn't have what they need in the secondary to handle all the Bills talent at the Skill position

 

-Karlos Williams is quickly becoming one of my favorite players. The guy just gets yards every time he gets the ball in his hands

 

-I’ll never understand why fans of teams have issues with keeping two talented players at the same position. Yes Karlos Williams is doing well, that doesn’t mean McCoy should take the brunt of criticisms. Having them both gives the Bills multiple options and gives opposing defenses big issues

 

-The name of the game against the Bills now is 3 step drops and quick passes. You can still expect that next week against the Giants and for the foreseeable future. This week though the Bills started to disrupt it by bumping more and getting their front four into passing lanes. The sack numbers will stay down during this but expect the turnovers to start to go up.

 

-For a class that wasn't supposed to contribute the Bills 2015 draft class is paying early dividends. Williams we have already covered, Darby has been just as good. The knock on Darby was ball skills coming out of the draft, well it safe to say that the Bills coaching staff focused on that and looks to have fixed the issue through three games. Darby keeps getting better and better. With that skill set the sky is the limit for him.

 

-It was a Clay day very early in the game. He got the party started in Miami by cutting up the Miami defense on the first drive and made a very clear statement that he is worth every penny the Bills are paying him

 

-The game as a whole was exactly what you want to see out of a young QB on the road coming off a bad loss at home to the reigning Super Bowl champs. Taylor started fast and did not look back. He is showing week after week that the bills may have finally found a solution to their decade and a half QB problem

 

-Sammy Watkins needs to get these lingering injuries figured out. They are starting to rack up and he may need to look into how he prepares himself for games. The calf injury doesn't sound serious but it again removes him from the field.

 

-Percy Harvin without Watkins on the field took a lead role and I think it will be great building his confidence moving forward. He made clutch receptions and moved the chains. He also kept the defense honest all day which won’t show up on the stat sheet

 

-I said last week that the Bills getting their teeth kicked in by the Patriots in week 2 might actually end up being a positive. I think this game proved that it might just be that. Getting humbled like that after all the talking and coverage leading up to the game was a humbling experience for the Bills. It showed them htat there is still a lot of work to be done and no team is going to just lay down


-Enjoy Greg Roman while he’s here Bills fans, he keeps this up and he will be a leading Head Coaching candidate in 2016. He has made the offense look like night and day compared to the last 2 years

 

 

Rest of the League

 

-Miami is in a really tough spot. For some reason they extended out a coach that really had no business being extended out. The Dolphins looked absolutely deflated on Sunday and that lands on the Head Coach

 

-Furthering Miami’s issues is having 200 million dollars tied up in a completely lost N.Suh and a QB who on his best day is Alex Smith. Miami has had GM issues for years and it doesn’t look like its going to improve anytime soon. The money spent on Suh is especially a killer. They poured all that money into a position and the side of the ball that didn’t need to be fixed

 

-The Jets were brought back down to reality on Sunday. They have a multitude of issues on both sides of the ball that will continue to be exposed as the season goes on. The biggest issues are a weak OL and a suspect pass rush. Both issues linger from last year.

 

-The Patriots did not punt once and put up 35 first downs….unreal

 

-The Eagles finally got a win over an overrated Jets team but the issues are still there. Bradford still looks like he can not find any rhythm in the offense

 

-There is no “Harbaugh effect” Kaep just isn’t that good and he has no business getting paid what he does. Its pretty clear after his last 18 game slate

 

-Raiders are going to keep getting better and better. They will not make the playoffs but they are going to be a .500 football team

 

-Just start Manziel Cleveland, and I don’t even think Manziel will ever amount to anything.


-Staying on the Browns. I said back when Pettine was first mentioned for the Job that he shouldn’t be so quick to jump at the first opportunity. I think he is starting to see why he should have been more calculated

 

-Pittsburgh is about to find out why a backup QB is important. You need to have a guy that can get you through 4-6 games playing .500 ball. If you can’t muster that the season is done

 

-AJ Green and Julio Jones are playing a very fun game who’s team is happier that they got a contract extension done


-The Bears are entering full blow it up mode and I for one commend them for recognizing it early. To many times teams wait on it and it in the end sets them back. Look for the Bears to keep moving some of their older players off the roster for assets to help speed up the rebuild


Thoughts on Week Two

Mike Watkins

@merk256

9/21/15


Buffalo Bills

 

 

-Utilization of deep speed: In a predictable game plan the Patriots stacked the box and bet that Tyrod Taylor could not beat them with his arm. This is going to be the case for the vast majority of the Bills games this year. The only way to back the opposing team off the LOS is to start hitting deep throws. Taylor hit a nice one late to Watkins that along with the Harvin TD against the Colts will at least give opposing teams some pause in game planning. The Bills have to start hitting these passes earlier in the game for it to be effective.

 

 

-Growing pains with Tyrod: When the Bills named Tyrod Taylor the starter for the year they did so knowing that he is essentially a rookie and there are going to be some growing pains. Against the Patriots the Bills had to deal with these pains for the first time. Taylor looked rushed and often confused for most of the day. He sailed passes high and often could not identify opposing defensive looks. This is going to be part of the process with Taylor, and there will be more games like this.

 

 

-Sticking with the run longer: I understand the Patriots were stacking the box, but the Bills after a strong first drive in which they marched down the field with a great mix of run and pass for some reason moved away from the run on the next two drives. This made them predictable and the Patriots pounced because the Bills did exactly what the Patriots wanted them to do, put the game on Taylor’s shoulders and not McCoy’s. The Bills need to hang with the running game in the early portions of the game far better than they did Sunday in the future. I would also like to see more of a mix of Karlos Williams and McCoy on the same drive. I think there styles complement each other and adjusting to each frustrates defenses

 

 

-Defense was the big issue: 500 plus yards and 40 points is a big problem. Was the offense an issue in this game? Sure, but nowhere near as big an issue as the defense. The Patriots outside of a few drives did whatever they wanted to Rex Ryans defense. They ran short quick patterns on three step drops to negate the Bills pass rush and the Bills could not figure out a way to counter it at all. The Patriots especially abused the Bills LB’s and Safety’s in coverage figuring out that those two groups are the weak link in the Bills pass defense

 

 

-OK to get fired up but has to be Chaos in control: I’m completely fine with getting fired up and I don’t care about talking trash to an opponent. The problem however is when it starts affecting the game in an negative way. A.Williams for example could not control himself for a good part of the game and because of that cost the Bills points and allowed the Patriots an easier path to the end zone. The Bills MUST get better at this if they are to make a playoff run. 15 yard personal foul penalties are completely and utterly unacceptable

 

 

-Being Humbled: The one bright spot about this may be the fact that the Bills were thoroughly beat in all phases of the game. This could have a positive effect on the team in that the press is nice but the work still has to be put in. Hopefully the reaction is to never be that completely dominated again. It could also spiral but I believe the Bills mentality to be the opposite of that and I think they will take their aggression out on an overrated Miami team

 

 

 

Rest of the League

 

 

-I missed the mark on the Saints: I thought the Saints would be far better than this heading into the year. Losing to Tampa Bay at home however is a big blow and all of a sudden an offense that was so explosive for years looks predictable and Brees looks like he’s on his last legs. Still a long way to go but this team seems destined to be blown up at the end of the year

 

 

-Tom Brady is that good: Tom Brady is the best QB I’ve seen play, ever. I for the longest time was on the Joe Montana train but I’m officially off. Year after year Brady just continues to be far ahead of anyone else and has not lost a step. It really doesn’t matter who you surround him with he will elevate their play

 

 

-Heat is going to start to get real turned up on Chip Kelly: I wrote in the offseason that the Eagles took a big chance and in my opinion made a big mistake making Kelly the be all end all for the Eagles. The early returns are not looking good for the Eagles or Kelly. With now 35 games on tape opposing defenses have now adjusted to Chip Kelly’s offense and we are finally going to see how good Kelly is because this is something that has almost never happened to him. He needs to adjust back. If he can’t, you may see him bolt to the college ranks at the end of the year which would be a disaster for the Eagles

 

 

-Seahawks Fire: Despite what Kam Chancellors agent wants you to believe, no, Kam is not the reason for the 0-2 start. The more likely culprit is that a lot of the players have settled after multiple trips to the Super Bowl and most of the roster getting paid

 

 

-57 million per tackle: That’s the return on investment for the Dolphins so far and according to a Sports Illustrated report Suh is free lancing and becoming disgruntled. Suh and Miami’s DL seem to be in a funk as they are generating very little pass rush, but the last thing they need right now is Suh disgruntled and basically calling for scraping the Defense for something better suited for himself.

 

 

-Money Well Spent: Atlanta has to be absolutely thrilled they were able to lock up J.Jones when they did. He has been worth every penny through 2 games. He is staking his claim to best WR in the game.

Thoughts on Fred Jackson and Tyrod Taylor

Mike Watkins

@merk256

9-1-15  

 

The Tyrod Taylor era has officially begun in Buffalo. It was a signing in the offseason that was mostly met with a “meh” and a shoulder shrug. Now in August he has officially won the starting job. Given how he played in the games and what was reported during camp he without a doubt earned the starting nod.


                I admit I thought Cassel would get the nod. I thought the staff would ride an elite defense, a power running game, with hopefully mistake free football at the games most important position to the playoffs. I thought it would be the right move and then if things started going south they would have a potential spark off the bench from EJ or Tyrod. They decided instead to go for broke with a player that could cause a lot of issues for opposing teams


                After watching Taylor in preseason games one and two, I admit, I was wrong. Taylor showed a lot and he earned the right to be the starting QB for the Buffalo Bills. At first he ran a little too much for my liking but then clearly corrected that in game three as he hit a number of passes from the pocket. He continues to make progress every time I watch him. He showed a command of the offense and enough in the pocket to where he will not be a run first pass later QB


                What really convinced me however is his ability to be consistent on the short and mid-range throws through the preseason. This is what has been an issue for Bills QB’s in the past. In this offense though that ability is going to be critical because it’s going to allow the Bills playmakers to operate in space. Add in the deep throws that Taylor has been able to hit and the Bills offense could surprise in 2015.


                Taylor still has a ways to go and there will be some bumps in the road along the way. I imagine when the game speeds up during the regular season he will once again rely a little too much on his scrambling ability. If you are the Bills you have to trust that he will eventually learn from it and progress to a point where it’s a weapon for him but not his identity.

               

Fred Jackson

               

          The Bills finally released Fred Jackson and it came as a shock to a lot of Bills fans including myself. Fred in his time in Buffalo embodied what playing and living in the city is all about, never giving up. He was never the fastest or the biggest player on the field but few if anyone could match his desire and will to succeed on and off the field.  


                In the end it came down to a numbers game. With McCoy and rookie Karlos Williams looking to garner most the carries during the season there was not much room for Jackson. Dixon will contribute on special teams and Bryce Brown has worked his way back into the good graces of the coaching and front office staff for the time being. Jackson at age 34 and with no real spot on special teams became expandable


                I personally think Jackson will eventually find a home. While he has lost some speed there is still useful talent left in him. As a third down back he can still excel. So a playoff team looking to protect their franchise QB on obvious passing downs will have at least some level of interest.


                For me I would like to thank Fred Jackson for all he did in Buffalo both on and off the field. He gave the fans of this city highlights and effort that they could cheer about during a dark playoff drought of the past 15 years. I wish him the best wherever he lands and hope he can finally make it to those elusive playoffs.

Preseason Top 5's: LB

Mike Watkins

@merk256

8/25/15

 

1.J.Smith, Notre Dame: In a word, beast. Smith is my favorite player coming into the 2015 season. You would be hard pressed to find a hole in his game and will often draw comparisons to the highest graded ILB I’ve had coming out of college in P.Willis. I’d go so far as to say that if Smith keeps getting better I’ll have him higher than I had Willis. Mainly because Smith is farther along in pass coverage and blitzing in college than Willis was.


2.M.Jack, UCLA: Jack is very Luke Kuechly’ish. He has excellent coverage skills which is a rising value for NFL teams given how much teams pass now. He is a very instinctive player that can cover a lot of ground in a short amount of time.


3.S.Wright, Arizona: 3-4 teams will be very high on Wright. Of the LB’s on this list he has the best pass rushing skills. He plays like his hair is on fire and can be seen in on nearly all of Arizona’s defensive plays. If he’s not making the play he is nearby. Wright like Jack and Smith are system fluid which will keep his stock high


4.L.Floyd, Georgia: Has very good pass rushing skills and when he is focused is a very good all around LB. It took a benching to wake him up half way into the year. After that though he was often the best defensive player on the field for Georgia. If he keeps his head on straight he could be a late first rounder.


5.R.Ragland, Alabama: Ragland is your more classic ILB with a very much fill and kill mentality for the run game. He will get labeled as a two down run stopper but I have him higher than I had CJ Mosley coming out of college. He will be fighting the growing stigma that Alabama defenders never live up to the hype on Sundays.

 

Overview: Loaded, absolutely loaded with talent. This is easily the deepest position for the 2016 draft. If you are a NFL team in need of a LB then the 2016 draft is for you much like the 2015 draft was for RB. I have 2 with a top 10 grade and 1 with a top 15 grade. It will be interesting to see how this plays out over the season to see who the first one off the boars is in 2016

Preseason Top 5's: DT

Mike Watkins

@merk256

8/22/15

 

1.M.Collins, Nebraska: Every Nebraska game I watched last year I tuned in to watch Randy Gregory but more often than not came away thinking he is the second most talented player on the DL. Collins is the guy that made things go on that Nebraska DL. If Collins keeps up what he did last year he’ll be the first DT off the board in 2016

 

2.J.Augusta, Missouri: Augusta much like Collins was often an after thought in most games to due to players getting more pub. That however should not be the case this years for Augusta. He plays with good leverage and will take on the double when needed for run support

 

3.S.Day, Notre Dame: I’m higher on Day than most, I’ve seen every snap he’s taken at Notre Dame and when he’s on he is one of the best DL in college football. He understands angles and can penetrate on a consistent basis. 3-4 teams will be especially high on him because he has a lot of snaps at the sometimes difficult to find 5 tech

 

4.A.Robinson, Alabama: Robinson is a lot higher on almost every other Pre Season list. While Robinson is talented it doesn’t always show up. I saw far too many plays where he just mailed it in. If he can rid himself of those snaps than he will move up the board fast.

 

5.C.Jones, Mississippi St.: Jones last year ate up a lock of blocks so his teammates could make plays. This year I expect him to be the one making the plays that show up on the stat sheet. He is very good at anchoring in the middle which will keep his value up there. Needs to show more as a pass rusher this year however

 

Overall: Right now the class is average but much like IOL, DT’s tend to not really take big steps in development until their junior and senior year. Still there is talent among the group but I don’t see any elite top 10 talent. I have 2 maybe 3 1st round grades but it would be mid to late at this point.

Preseason Top 5's: DE

Mike Watkins

@merk256

8/17/15

 

1.J.Bosa, Ohio State: Even despite his recent one game suspension Bosa should easily be a top 5 pick in the 2016 draft. Bosa pretty much has it all when it comes to a DL. Size, burst off the snap, High football IQ, and good hand tech. He is also scheme fluid which has grown in value more and more in the NFL every year.


2.S.Calhoun, Michigan State: Calhoun for two years now has been one of the better pass rushers in college football. If he adds a 3rd year of that production to his resume then he will be in line to be a top 20 pick. Calhoun needs to sharpen up his technique but there is a lot to like. Both 3-4 and 4-3 teams will be interested


3.E.Ogbah, Oklahoma St.: Ogbah, outside of Bosa, is the most complete DE heading into the 2015 season. He doesn’t get the national pub that some of the other DE’s in the country do but I expect that to change as the year goes on. Ogbah is good against the run and has an array of power rushing moves


4.D.Nicolas, Virginia Tech: Nicolas is the quintessential speed rusher who lives in the back field. Excellent at locating the ball and is a very natural pass rusher with great bend. He likely will be looked at as a OLB in 3-4’S but I think he can also put his hand in the dirt with his relentless mentality  


5.R.Nkemdiche, Ole Miss: From a physical and athletic ability standpoint Nkemdiche should be number 1 on this list. Problem is however that his motor runs far to cool far too often. Nkemdiche needs to show that he can bring it game in and game out. I’m suspect that will actual happen but none the less his physical skill cannot be ignored

 

Overall: I’d call it a above average class heading into the season. If some of the prospects start living up to their hype the class could be good. Bosa is clearly the jewel of the class and any player would be very hard pressed to topple him off the top

Preseason Top 5's: IOL

Mike Watkins

@merk256

8/11/15

 

1.V.Alexander, LSU: As a run blocker Alexander is a road grader, as a pass blocker he has a long way to go. He anchors fairly well but is often beat by DT’s that are quick. He has said to have made great strides in picking up this part of his game over the spring. If that’s the case he’ll be the first IOL off the board


2.A.Redmond, UCLA: Redmond is the type of OG I prefer in that he moves well in space. This gives an offense multiple facets that they can add to both the running game and passing game. His run blocking is good and like most IOL the pass blocking needs to get shored up.


3.L.Turner, North Carolina: Of the top 3 on here Turner pass blocking skills are the farthest along. That said he is decent in run blocking but really needs to add power to his game because he often gets bull rushed to easy. Id’ like to see Turner become more consistent play in and play out.


4.M.Tuerk, USC: Tuerk played well game in and game out in 2014. He moves well in space and is good in both run and pass blocking. He is has a great football IQ and also very versatile logging at least one start at each offensive line position.


5.N.Martin, Notre Dame: Martin is a very well rounded center who gets to the 2nd level with ease and is very adapt at hitting moving targets. He struggles with bigger NT’s sometimes but started to clean that up by the end of 2014. Getting through the season healthy will be big as there is a little injury concern.

 

Overall: The group is below average in my opinion to start the 2015 season. There is going to be a lot of room for movement during the season. I don’t have a first rounder on any of the prospects right now and really only one or two that have a reasonable shot at getting that grade if they improve

Preseason Top 5's: OT

Mike Watkins

@merk256

8/5/15

 

1.R.Stanley, Notre Dame: At 6’5 315 with good feet and power Stanley pretty much has everything you want in a OT. It was a bit of a surprise he went back to school for 2015 because I thought he could easily push to be the first OT off the board in the draft. He handles speed well, has good length, shows power in the run game, and has great tape against elite defensive lineman


2.L.Tunsil, Ole Miss: While Stanley is the most complete OT in the upcoming class Tunsil is the best overall pass protector. He has great bend and feet which allows him to neutralize speed rushers with little effort. A couple things he could improve on are his run blocking, good but not great, and his technique. He often gets away with sloppy tech because he’s such a good athlete


3.J.Hawkins, LSU: Hawkins played OG last year and was an excellent run blocker. I think his future is at LT and the only thing keeping him from playing that position last year was a very talented L.Collins. He’ll need an adjustment period and this is a bit of a projection but I like what I’ve seen from Hawkins


4.T.Decker, Ohio State: Decker has a lot of starts under his belt at a major program which is always a positive. I view him as a RT on Sundays. I think he is a good run blocker but I think he will have issues with speed in the NFL. He’s a very tough kid and is well rounded with a good chance to start from day 1


5.J.Conklin, Michigan State: I can see Conklin going back to school but if he doesn’t he deserves to be on this list. He is a redshirt Sophmore with a great deal of ability. He struggles with bull rushers but that is to be expected as he continues to add strength.

 

Overall: I think there is 2 premier players here in Stanley and Tunsil and I expect them to go back and forth all year. Outside of them you have a decent amount of good prospects and then it fizzles out. Overall I would say it’s shaping up to be a good class

Preseason Top 5's: TE

Mike Watkins

@merk256

7/31/15

 

1.H.Henry, Arkansas: Overall I think he is the most complete TE in the draft. He can run block well enough to be a 3 down TE. He also has enough receiving ability to be a threat in the passing game. He is not an explosive stretch the seem TE and is in more of the traditional mode of TE in that he can find soft spots in defenses.


2.E.Engram, Ole Miss: Engram lacks in the blocking skills department but more than makes up for it in the receiving department. Engrams biggest issue is to play on Sundays he is going to have to add weight. On a good day he is said to be 220. He’ll need to get to 240 and retain his athletic ability


3.O.Howard, Alabama: He doesn’t have the production numbers you would expect from someone with his skill level. With only 17 receptions he was a bit handicap in an offense that does not reallty featured TE’s. So for NFL teams interested they are going to be doing more of a projection with Howard because I don’t see him being featured any time soon in the offense.


4.D.Griswold, Arkansas St.: Prototypical size for the position which will draw teams to him. He is also a good athlete for his size. So a team interested will want to see an uptick in production this year but he’ll maintain a lot of his value if he stays healthy. He is raw but there is a lot to work with


5.J.Mundt, Oregon: Injuries took away the 2014 season but he showed a lot of ability and promise in 2013. He is said to have improved his blocking in the spring. If he adds that to his receiving ability he should move up the board.


Overall: This is one of the weaker positions heading into the 2015 College season. I do not have a first round grade on any prospects and the 2nd round grades are mid 2nd round at best. Beauty is very much in the eye of the beholder with this group. If you are looking for an in line run blocking thumper you will have options. If you are looking for the next Gronk or Graham you are not going to find him

Final 2015 Mock Draft... Full First Round, Bills selection, and Thoughts

Mike Watkins

@merk256

4/29/15

 1.Tampa Bay: J.Winston, QB, FSU

2.Tennessee: M.Mariota, QB, Oregon

3.Jacksonville: D.Fowler, OLB/DE, Florida

4.Oakland: L.Williams, DE/DT, USC

5.Washington: A.Cooper, WR, Alabama

6.NY Jets: V.Beasley, DE/OLB, Clemson

7.Chicago: A.Dupree, DE/OLB, Kentucky

8.Atlanta: T.Gurley, RB, Georgia

9.NY Giants: K.White, WR, West Virginia 

10.St.Louis: A.Peat, OT, Stanford

11.Minnesota: T.Waynes, CB, Michigan St

12.Cleveland: M.Gordon, RB, Wisconsin

13.New Orleans: D.Shelton, DT, Washington

14.Miami: B.Schreff, OG/OT, Iowa

15.S.F.: K.Johnson, CB, Wake Forest 

16.Houston: L.Collins, OG/OT, LSU

17.San Diego: D.Parker, WR, Louisville

18.Kansas City: E.Flowers, OT, Miami

19.Cleveland: A.Armstead, DE/DT, Oregon

20.Philadelphia: B.Jones, CB, UConn

21.Cincinnati: S.Ray, DE, Missouri 

22.Pittsburgh: R.Gregory, OLB/DE, Nebraska

23.Detroit: DJ Humphries, OT, Florida

24.Arizona: M.Brown, DT/DE, Texas

25.Carolina: J.Fisher, OT, Oregon

26.Baltimore: J.Strong, WR, Arizona St

27.Dallas: J.Collins, CB, LSU

28.Denver: D.Smith, OT, Penn State

29.Indianapolis: L.Collins, S, Alabama

30.Green Bay: E.Goldman, DT, FSU

31.New Orleans: M.Williams, TE, Minnesota

32.New England: B.Perriman, WR, UCF

 

 

Buffalo Bills Selection: PJ Williams, CB, FSU

 

Projecting out a first round selection is difficult, trying to project out the Bills selection in the 2nd round in a thin draft is extremely difficult. In any case I think the Bills are going defense and I think they are selecting a player to reinforce the secondary.

 

The reasoning is two fold

 

1.The Bills spent the offseason shoring up the offense. Rex Ryan learned his lesson in New York and decided to be extremely aggressive in the offseason looking to upgrade the offense so the defense can carry a little less of the load. That time has passed though and in my opinion Rex and the Bills will be looking to add to the other side of the ball to reinforce it to keep it strong now and for the long hall

 

2. It’s not necessarily a big need now but it will be next year so they would be wise to get a jump on it and get a talented young kid in the system. Gilmore will be a free agent and by all accounts they will want him back but nothing is guaranteed. McKelvin will be 31 by next season and the bottom will fall out quick for a CB who relies far more on athletic ability than his instincts. The Bills would be smart to get ahead of the ball on this issue. We all saw what can happen if Rex does not have talent at the CB spot, see last year in New York. The position is critical to Rex’s defense and I imagine he will do his best to not allow what happened last year with the Jets to ever happen with the Bills. I imagine the front office is on board with that

 

 The Fit: Williams to me would fit right into what Rex likes in his CB’s. He is aggressive at the line of scrimmage and prefers man to zone coverage. He can be a gambler at times but has the swagger and short memory that you need at the position. In run support he is above average and makes the effort. Which for a CB coming out of college already puts him ahead of the game. The Bills could start him off in the slot to groom him for 2016 when either McKelvin or Gilmore depart.

 

Other thoughts on Bills Draft:

 

-I think it’s incorrect to assume the Bills will just pick whatever the best OL is on the board on Day 2. I believe, and I think they think the same, is that it’s not a realistic expectation to think that any OL selected in the 2nd or 3rd will come in right away and start. Most of the lineman selected in these rounds need a year or two in an NFL weight training program. I think 4 of the 5 OL spots are locked in and I believe they think Kromer can coach up a player already on the roster to fill in the last spot

 

-I’m all for taking a QB in any round in this draft for the Bills. I am firmly in the camp that, as Seattle did, you need to attack the problem with numbers. The more competition the better

 

-The Bills need to keep adding to the DL. They have spent a lot of time, money, and assets building up that unit and making it the identity of the team. They would be very wise to keep it deep and flush with talent

 

-I’d like them to pick an ILB at some point because depth there is a concern and next year may be an issue. I’m not in the bring Bradham back camp. I don’t think he is a critical part of the defense and much like RB can be filled relatively quickly in any draft. An injury to Bradham or Brown this year though could have a big impact with how little they have behind the two

 

-Personally I’m fine with the Bills WR’s right now but I get why they would want to add another one. Give whomever the QB is as much fire power as possible. It forces the defense to play more straight up which in turn creates more space for players like Watkins, Harvin, and McCoy

 

-I mocked PJ Williams to the Bills but I would love it if M.Peters made it to the Bills. In my opinion he’s the best man CB in the draft

 

-I would like it if the Bills could somehow find a ball hawking FS in this draft. Rex’s defense has always operated at its peak when he has a great center fielder of a Safety roaming around. The pressure he creates with the front 7 allows a player of that skill set to really go to town

 

1st Round Draft Thoughts

 

-I still have Mariota over Winston. I just like the way Mariota carries himself and I think he has a real shot to be the first QB to really make it on Sundays after spending his career on Saturdays in an option spread offense. The reality is I don’t trust Winston off the field

 

-Jaguars are a tough pick but I went with Fowler who I believe to be the best defensive player in the draft. I think the Jags have no shot of finding any player near Fowler’s skill set at the top of round two, while there is a decent shot of finding a good WR at the top of round 2

 

-A WR for Carr would be tempting but I think pairing Williams and Mack together is far more tempting for Oakland

 

-I went with Gurley to Atlanta because I think there is value to keeping the kid in Georgia and more importantly I think there will be an early run on pass rushers leaving the Falcons empty handed on that side of the ball.

 

-The Giants are a BPA drafting team that values skill position so I have a hard time believing that they will spend a top 10 pick on the OL. I think the player they want is Gurley but I think they will fall a pick short of him. That leaves them with White which when paired with OBJ and Cruz makes for a very deep and talented WR position for Eli to take advantage of

 

-I have T.Waynes as the first CB off the board. I overall do not like this CB class. I think there are a good number of #2 CB’s in the draft but none with shutdown ability

 

-A lot may think 12 is too high for M.Gordon but I think Cleveland will grab him there. They lack speed on offense and Gordon could provide help in both the running and passing game. He has J.Charles like ability

 

-The Eagles are a tough one to gage. Most think WR but I think Chip Kelly believes he can make it work with less talent on offense. Due to that he is going to load up his defense as much as possible. Jones can play CB or Safety and that makes him a good fit for the Eagles

 

-Ray and Gregory will be interesting to follow in the draft. The NFL grabs more and more negative off the field headlines every year. Teams may be wary of adding players with these issues. Dion Jordan getting his entire 2015 season taken away I’m sure had a lot of teams take stock if the reward is worth the risk

 

-Overall it’s a weak draft. I think you will see more teams lean towards BPA than depth this year. Problem with trying to forecast that is that the rankings for the players are all over the place.

 

-Look for teams to value 2016 picks more than 2015 picks in trades

2016 PFWR Big Board

PFWR Rankings  
by Anthony Macari

# Top 55
1 Laremy Tunsil OT
2  Myles Jack LB
3  Jalen Ramsey S 
4 Joey Bosa E
5  Ezekiel Elliott RB
6 Carson Wentz QB
7 Jared Goff QB
8 DeForest Buckner DT 
9 Leonard Floyd LB 
10 Ronnie Stanley OT
11 William Jackson III CB 12 Shaq Lawson E  
13 Mackensie Alexander CB 
14 Vernon Hargreaves III CB 
15 Noah Spence E  
16 Andrew Billings  DT 
17 Jarran Reed  DT  
18 Emmanuel Ogbah E
19 Jack Conklin OT
20  Darron Lee LB
21 Karl Joseph S 
22 Reggie Ragland LB  
23 Sheldon Rankins  DT 
24 Taylor Decker OT 
25 Laquon Treadwell WR 
26 Corey Coleman WR 
27 Cody Whitehair G 
28  A'Shawn Robinson DT 
29 Josh Doctson WR 
30 Nick Martin C 
31 Vernon Butler DT  32 Paxton Lynch QB   
33 Kevin Dodd E
34 Kalan Reed CB 
35 Christian Hackenberg QB
36  Connor Cook QB
37 Darian Thompson S 
38 Eli   Apple CB  
39 Germain Ifedi OT 
40 Sterling   Shepard WR 
41 Ryan Kelly C  
42 Sean Davis S    
43 Bronson Kaufusi E 
44 Carl Nassib E
45 Shilique Calhoun  E
46 Michael Thomas WR 
47 Will Fuller WR   
48 Austin   Hooper TE  
49 Derrick Henry RB
50 Tyler Ervin RB 
51 Javon Hargrave  DT 
52 Chris Jones  DT  
53 Hassan Ridgeway  DT
54 Kendall Fuller CB   
55 Cyrus Jones  CB 
56 Kevin Hogan QB


2016 Mock Draft 
by Mike Watkins

1.Titans: L.Tunsil, Ole Miss, OT

2.Browns: J.Goff, Cal, QB

3.Chargers: D.Buckner, Oregon, DE/DT

4.Cowboys: J.Ramsey, Florida State, S/CB

5.Jaguars: J.Bosa, Ohio State, DE

6.Ravens: M.Jack, UCLA, LB

7.49ers: C.Wentz, SDST, QB

8.Eagles: V.Hargreaves, Florida, CB

9.Buccaneers: R.Stanley, Notre Dame, OT

10.Giants: E.Elliot, Ohio State, RB

11.Bears: S.Lawson, Clemson, DE/LB

12.Saints: S.Rankins, Louisville, DT

13.Dolphins: M.Alexander, Clemson, CB

14.Raiders: J.Reed, Alabama, DT

15.Rams: P.Lynch, Memphis, QB

16.Lions: J.Conklin, Michigan St, OT

17.Falcons: E.Ogbah, Oklahoma St, DE/OLB

18.Colts: K.Dodd, Clemson, DE

19.Bills: N.Spence, E.Kentucky, DE/OLB

20.Jets: L.Floyd, Georgia, LB

21.Redskins: A.Robinson, Alabama, DT

22.Texans: C.Coleman, Baylor, WR

23.Vikings: L.Treadwell, Ole Miss, WR

24.Bengals: A.Billings, Baylor, DT

25.Steelers: W.Jackson, Houston, CB

26.Seahawks: R.Nkemdiche, Ole miss, DT

27.Packers: D.Lee, Ohio State, LB

28.Chiefs: R.Ragland, Alabama, LB

29.Cardinals: T.Decker, Ohio State, OT

30.Panthers: V.Bell, Ohio St., S

31.Broncos: C.Cook, Michigan State, QB


2016 Mock Draft
by Anthony Macari

Rams Jared Goff QB Eagles Carson Wentz QB  Chargers Laremy Tunsil  OT Cowboys Jalen Ramsey  S
Jaguars Joey Bosa E 
Ravens  Leonard Floyd LB
49ers   DeForest Buckner DT
Browns Ronnie Stanley OT
Bucs Vernon Hargreaves III CB Giants Myles Jack LB
Bears  Shaq Lawson  E
Saints  Noah Spence E
Dolphins Ezekiel Elliott RB
Raiders Sheld Rankins DT 
Titans Jack Conklin OT
Lions Jarran Reed DT
Falcons Darron Lee LB 
Colts  Taylor Decker OT 
Bills Andrew Billings  DT
Jets Paxton Lynch QB
Redskins Reggie Ragland LB Texans  Corey Coleman WR Vikings  Laquon Treadwell WR
Bengals  Josh Doctson WR 
Steelers William Jackson III  CB 
Seahawks Germain Ifedi OT
Packers  Vernon Butler DT
Chiefs  Eli Apple CB 
Cardinals Ryan Kelly  C
Panthers Cyrus Jones
Broncos Connor Cook  QB