Ron's post got me thinking. It is hard to imagine going after Pepers or (more likely) Suggs given the Bills history of spending in free agency. However, what if getting Suggs were to be part of a larger overall plan? If by some miracle the football gods were to shine down upon the Buffalo Bills and we did land Suggs I could see the following chain of events occurring.
1. We trade back in the first to no farther than the #21 Philly pick. With that we get a late round 2nd or another 3rd. In the first round we then pick Brandon Pettigrew. He is projected as a mid 20's pick now. He needs work on his passing game but he is way ahead of the curve in run blocking. He seemed to handle LB's and DLinemen at the Senior Bowl with ease. He likes to run block and it shows. He is simply a force at run blocking already.
2. Round 2 we pick the best C on the board. Oh please, football gods, make Alex Mack be there after his Senior Bowl appearance. Either way we get one of the top 3 centers in this draft. Mack, Unger and Woods are all good at run blocking now. That gives us two pieces of the puzzle in place.
Now we have two picks before the 4th round. Either another 2nd and a 3rd or two 3rds. With the first of these two we choose the best playmaker available between a DT, LB, or S. With the second pick we do the same thing only we have eliminated one position. My guess would be to get a LB and DT.
3. Oops, I screwed up the numbers. No matter. It is now our 4th round pick and we land Quinn Johnson. A beheamoth FB with hands! He clearly stood out at the Senior Bowl as a blocker and ball carrier. We want him in this draft. He will be our third running back and he is a punishing blocker. As a bonus he is also a good receiver.
4. 5th and 6th round picks go to OG and S. Fill some holes and try to upgrade depth. The 7th round pick who cares. Choose whomever you want.
What this means is that by landing Suggs we can emphatically switch to a running game first - say 55-60 percent of the time. We have now plugged in to our offense a stud TE run blocker, a very good to stud run blocking C, and a punishing run blocking FB. We have filled the remaining pieces on offense to give us what surely would be now an elite running game. ANd on defense we now have the disruptive end we need, an upgrade at LB and hopefully good depth at DT. The offense gets 3 excellent players and the D gets the rest. This is all made possible by landing a stud DE in free agency. This draft becomes very doeable and the whole picture makes sense. And now with an emphasis on the run game, Trent has much less pressure on him to develop. Now I can understand the reasoning for going HARD after Suggs. It has been a long time since the football gods have shined down upon us in such a wonderful way. The Bills are a bit overdue. You are right, Ron, it makes sense to spend big on Suggs. If this were to happen, I would have to completely change my prediction for next season. I like that.