Getting the No. 1 cornerback prospect in the NFL Draft with the 10th pick seems like a pretty sweet deal. I don't think the Bills would hesitate to select Marshon Lattimore if he's available. They lost Stephon Gilmore to the Patriots, and they needed cornerback help even before he departed. Lattimore could be chosen much earlier than this, so he provides very good value at No. 10 overall.
*** OTHER 2017 NFL DRAFT POSSIBILITIES: ***
1. Mitchell Trubisky, QB - The Bills have had a major internal struggle about what to do with Tyrod Taylor, and the way the contract is set up, they can part ways with Taylor after this season. Trubisky can sit for a year and learn behind Taylor, which is ideal because he doesn't have the appropriate amount of collegiate experience to play right away.
2. Reuben Foster, LB - The Bills could use another linebacker to play alongside Reggie Ragland, and I don't think Foster's failed drug test will drop him.
Pick change; previously Mitchell Trubisky, QB
Rd. 2, Pk. 12
Zay Jones, WR, East Carolina
The Bills need some weapons for Mitchell Trubisky - or Tyrod Taylor - as they have to find another receiver just in case Sammy Watkins gets injured again. Zay Jones could be taken at the end of the first round, so this is decent value for him.
Rd. 3, Pk. 11
Jalen Tabor, CB, Florida
The Bills lost Stephon Gilmore to the Patriots. I imagine their fans are already imagining worst-case scenarios. Buffalo needs a cornerback to replace Gilmore.
Rd. 5, Pk. 12
Roderick Johnson, OT, Florida State
One of Buffalo's greatest needs is at right tackle. Unfortunately, this class is pretty weak at the position.
Rd. 5, Pk. 27
Tedric Thompson, SS, Colorado
The Bills feel they're set at safety as far as their starters are concerned, but they need to add depth at the position.
If Mitch Trubisky is here, I think the Bills would take him. If he is gone, I believe Buffalo would prefer to take Lattimore, Malik Hooker or Jamal Adams. If all three are off the board, I think the Bills would take Reuben Foster to be their Will linebacker in their switch to a 4-3. In this mock, Lattimore is available, and the Bills need a replacement for Stephon Gilmore.
Lattimore played really well in 2016, recording 41 tackles, four interceptions and nine passes broken up. Scouting sources raved about how Lattimore looked in fall camp before the 2016 season, and during the year, some team sources said they graded him as a top-16 pick. The 6-foot, 192-pounder has good size to go with athletic ability. As a backup in 2015 during his redshirt freshman season, Lattimore recorded three passes broken up and five tackles.
Rd. 2, Pk. 2
JuJu Smith-Schuster, WR, USC
Buffalo needs a No. 2 wide receiver to pair with Sammy Watkins. This would be a perfect complement.
In 2016, Smith-Schuster totaled 90 receptions for 914 yards and 10 scores. He was completely shut down in the 2016 season opener by Marlon Humphrey and Minkah Fitzpatrick, two future NFL cornerbacks. In 2015, Smith-Schuster took over as the No. 1 receiver with Nelson Agholor in the NFL and was excellent with 89 receptions for 1,454 yards and 10 touchdowns. The 6-foot-1, 215-pounder had an impressive freshman season in 2014, totaling 54 catches for 724 yards and five touchdowns.
For the NFL, Smith-Schuster is more of a possession receiver, but he runs good routes and has size, generally quality hands, yards-after-the-catch skills, and enough quickness to produce in the short to intermediate part of the field. He is good at winning 50-50 passes and should be valuable in the red zone. Smith-Schuster could be a quality starter quickly in his NFL career, but may never become an elite No. 1 receiver as a pro.
Rd. 3, Pk. 3
Taylor Moton, OT/G, Western Michigan
Buffalo could use more competition at right tackle.
Moton (6-5, 330) was a solid offensive lineman for the Broncos the past few seasons and put together a quality senior year at right tackle. Western Michigan fielded a superb offense with a dynamic aerial attack for a few years, and Moton's pass protection contributed to that. As a sophomore, Moton played right tackle before moving to right guard as a junior. He has versatile size for the NFL and could be a player who is a valuable competitor at guard or right tackle early in his NFL career.
Rd. 5, Pk. 5
Tedric Thompson, SS, Colorado
The Bills grab a safety competitor.
Rd. 5, Pk. 5
Nate Hairston, CB, Temple
The Bills could target a couple of corners given the strength at the position.
Rd. 6, Pk. 6
Carlos Henderson, WR, Louisiana Tech
The Bills could use multiple wide receivers around Sammy Watkins.
The Bills badly need a wide receiver upgrade across from Sammy Watkins. Here's a good fit. <br> <br>
In 2016, Williams hauled in 98 receptions for 1,361 yards and 11 touchdowns. It was an impressive return to college football after missing most of 2015 due to injury. In that season's opener, Williams fractured his neck when he ran into the goalpost while catching a touchdown. That ended his year. <br> <br>
With Sammy Watkins in the NFL, Williams took over as Clemson's lead receiver in 2014 and caught 57 passes for 1,030 yards and six touchdowns. In his freshman season, he had 20 catches for 316 yards and three scores. <br> <br>
Williams is a dynamic big receiver who is tremendous at using his size and leaping ability to make catches over defensive backs. He is a phenomenal red-zone weapon and is superb on back-shoulder sideline throws. While Williams made a lot of excellent leaping grabs, he does need to cut down on some dropped passes. The 6-foot-3, 205-pounder had the potential to be the top wide receiver prospect in the 2016 NFL Draft as he has a real combination of size and speed.
1) Aaron Williams neck injury is unfortunate. He's an NFL talent that should have quite a few years left of play. But, it's possible he doesn't recover from this in time for next season. He may even consider retirement at just 26 years old. The Bills may have to find a replacement, and Malik Hooker happens to still be on the board in this mock.
2) It's undeniable the Bills want to move on from Tyrod Taylor. It's even part of the reason Rex Ryan got fired. Plus, cutting him as a June 1st cut saves the Bills $12 million. Reports state they are asking him to stay on a reduced contract, but I think even Taylor is ready to move on because of the cold shoulder they've given him. So, this creates a need at quarterback.
3) Deshaun Watson gets mocked all over the place from draft evaluators. You see him anywhere between the 1st and 45th pick. But, I think new head coach Sean McDermott will see Watson as his Cam Newton. Cam was more polished coming out of college, but Watson has both the playmaking ability and leadership qualities. New offensive coordinator Rick Dennison has to create game plans to help him succeed as Scott Linehan did for Dak Prescott. Watson did just defeat college football's best NFL type defenses back to back in Ohio State and Alabama. He's got the heart of a champion. Tyrod Taylor is efficient, but he's not going to take over games to get the Bills past the Patriots in the AFC East. It will take a lot of development to get Watson to that level, but he has the ceiling Taylor doesn't have.
The Bills shocked a lot of people this year by retaining the wildly inconsistent Tyrod Taylor instead of releasing him. He has shown he has lost a lot of his confidence and accuracy over the past calendar year, and nothing quite fixes confidence issues like a having a big safety valve to check down to. It has been nearly two decades since a tight end was taken in the top 10 of a NFL Draft, especially since the position has been continuously devalued over the years. But Howard isn't a prototypical tight end. With hands like a receiver and the blocking ability of a smaller guard, Howard is the perfect hybrid of a blocking/receiving tight end. Adding him will be a huge help for Taylor, especially because of Howard's familiarity with mobile quarterbacks and their need for him to be open, even if the route he's on doesn't call for him to break off.
Buffalo appears to be running Tyrod Taylor out of town. That will leave a big hole at quarterback, and the Bills could be targeting a replacement in the first round of the 2017 NFL Draft. <br> <br>
Of the quarterback prospects for the 2017 NFL Draft, Kizer has the best skill set. The 6-foot-4, 230-pounder has a strong arm that can make all the throws for the NFL. He has also flashed superb accuracy and an ability to make accurate touch passes downfield to beat good coverage in tight windows. Kizer can also make beautiful passes in the face of a pass rush. Additionally, he has the mobility to buy time for his receivers, bail out his offensive line, and pick up yards with his feet. The big problem for Kizer is consistency as he is a streaky passer and player. He also had issues late in games with critical mistakes in crunch time. <br> <br>
In 2016, Kizer completed 59 percent of his passes for 2,925 yards with 26 touchdowns and nine interceptions. He also ran for seven touchdowns. His completion percentage was thrown off by playing a game in the midst of Hurricane Matthew. In 2015, Kizer completed 63 percent of his passes for 2,884 yards with 21 touchdowns and 10 interceptions. He picked up 520 yards with 10 scores on the ground.<br> <br>
You could make an argument for CB at this point but I think the Bills can get by waiting in the later rounds to pick up a CB. I don’t get why Tyrod Taylor is being run out of town (stupid Bills). Oh wait..yes I do: Doug Whaley. Reading the tea leaves the Bills GM Doug Whaley see’s EJ Manuel as the next Big Ben (rolls eyes)…so you know who is going to be the QB in Buffalo next year. That reminds me next time I meet Doug Whaley I need to know who he buys his pot from – because he is obviously high as a kite. How y’all doing #BillsMafia?
What is more of a dire position in Buffalo is the WR position. If it’s not bad enough Sammy Watkins is seemingly always dealing with some injury, the Bills have Robert Woods, Marquise Goodwin, Justin Hunter, and Brandon Tate all entering free agency. Let me state that again for emphasis: FOUR STARTING WIDE RECEIEVERS COULD BE OFF THE BILLS TEAM BY FREE AGENCY – FOUR!!!?!?!?! It’s got to be DEFCON 1 in the Bills war room – full on desperation mode to draft WR bodies, cause if all four leave the roster that only leaves an oft injured Sammy Watkins as your starting WR depth - yikes! Thankfully, though in this mock draft Corey Davis is still available. And while possibility remains they could retain some of that talent listed above none of them are as good as or compliments Sammy Watkins like Corey Davis will.
I'm sure it's because your "NFL Matches" section is just the usual copy/pasta from other scouting report articles, but I literally spit out my drink reading you suggest Mixon as a fit for the Ravens. Zero chance that happens lol.
*EASTER UPDATE* WITH TRADES RD2, 3, & 4 ORDER IS RANDOM for trades that usually happen.
Used draft-site`s approach as a general guide. Really like their ranking system as it uses a hi-low rubric to rank each player. Took several ranking sites and averaged out player rankings. Used my own rankings for players I feel were ranked much too low. F/A updates with a few players still looking for a new home. Will update as they sign. Will see teams reach for QB & OT. 3 days till drafttime !! No big trades announced yet.