2016 Buffalo Bills Offseason Positional Needs
The Bills are coming off a season where expectations were higher than they had been in previous years, hiring a coach such as Rex Ryan will do that for a football team. However, the Bills extended their league leading playoff drought to 16 seasons. With that being said the team does not have as many glaring holes as it has had in years past.
The Bills hold the 19th pick in the draft and will be looking to draft a player that can contribute right away. If Tyrod Taylor is able to perform like he did in 2015 this draft could be the draft that propels the Bills into the playoffs. Three areas of need that come to mind when analyzing the Bills roster are:
1. Defensive End/Pass Rusher
The Bills are expected to release Mario Williams at some point this offseason. Releasing Williams to save money on the cap will create a massive hole opposite Jerry Hughes on the defensive line. The defense as a whole underwhelmed in 2015 but the lack of a pass rush was the most disappointing aspect, especially after how well the team rushed the passer in 2014.
In a draft full of pass rushers the Bills appear primed to fill a rather large hole on their defense. Assuming Rex Ryan is able to figure things out defensively a rookie pass rusher should have an opportunity to make an immediate impact.
2. Right Tackle
Richie Incognito and Eric Wood each had pro bowl seasons on the offensive line. Cordy Glenn helped solidify the left side of the line alongside Incognito. The right side of the line was not as solid; despite the fact the Bills lead the league in rushing.
Seantrel Henderson graded out near the bottom of right tackles this past season and former second round pick Cyrus Kouandjio has not shown any signs that he is worthy of a starting role. Even if a right tackle is taken later in the draft, he will certainly have an opportunity to earn the starting role.
3. Wide Receiver
The Percy Harvin experiment did not work out well for the Bills. When he was healthy Harvin was a contributing member of the offense, however Harvin was bit by the injury bug again and his contract has been voided by the team. That left Robert Woods as the team’s number two receiver alongside Sammy Watkins. Woods has shown the ability to make plays but he would be best suited as the team’s number three option.
In a perfect world the Bills would find a receiver with height to be a redzone scoring threat. However, receivers with that build are not easy to find and the Bills haven’t had a receiver that fits that mold in a number of years. Sammy Watkins will be among the best in the league so adding another weapon alongside him would go a long way in helping the offense as a whole.
Justin White is a Buffalo Bills writer for Pro Football Spot. Follow Justin on Twitter @Justin3White.