This is the start of a four-part series examining the types of players, rather than specific players, that the Buffalo Bills may target during the draft. The aim of these articles is to try to come to a consensus on what type of player the Bills should be looking to add to the roster. First up: Defensive End. Should the Bills add a future starter or a situational player at the position? That's what we'll examine right now; tight ends, fullbacks and cornerbacks, at the very least, will follow.
DEFENSIVE END: Do we need a future starter or a situational pass rusher?
We've debated numerous times about this position and where the Bills will address it. Many of us are on the future starter bandwagon, while others are thinking all we have to (and can) do is bring in a 4th DE who will provide the most value as a situational pass rusher and special teamer. I've been helping to captain the Derrick Harvey ship, but there is value in the situational rushers in this draft. Going after a situational DE, likely in the mid to late rounds, would allow us to address WR, TE and probably CB early on. We don't need an immediate starter at the position like we do at WR, but we do need an impact player. A DE who can develop into an every down player is something this franchise needs for the coming seasons when their currently over 30 DE's will likely be heading out of town. In the end, we need to find a guy who can get after the QB, whether that's a starting caliber player or a guy who will only see the field in obvious passing situations, it may not matter that much for this upcoming season.
Future Every Down DE's:
Early Rounds: Derrick Harvey (Florida), Phillip Merling (Clemson), Lawrence Jackson (USC), Chris Ellis (Virginia Tech), Jason Jones (Eastern Michigan), Jeremy Thompson (Wake Forest)
Mid/Late Rounds: Brian Johnston (Gardner-Webb), Tommy Blake (TCU), Kenny Iwebema (Iowa)
Situational Pass Rushers:
Early Rounds: Quentin Groves (Auburn), Cliff Avril (Purdue), Marcus Howard (Georgia)
Mid/Late Rounds: Bruce Davis (UCLA), Chase Ortiz (TCU), Titus Brown (Mississippi State), Curtis Johnson (Clark-Atlanta), Trevor Scott (Buffalo), Curtis Gatewood (Vanderbilt), Bryan Smith (McNeese State), Hilee Taylor (North Carolina), Jonal St. Dic (Michigan State), Anthony Hoke (Cincinnati)
All right folks, have at it. What type of Defensive End (and even who) do you think the Bills will fill their need with?