While the popular discussions surrounding the Buffalo Bills and the 2011 NFL Draft deal mostly with the quarterback position, there are a litany of "safe picks" that the Bills could execute come April 28. In his latest mock draft at ESPN.com, Mel Kiper has taken that route for Buddy Nix and the Bills, slotting Alabama defensive lineman Marcell Dareus into the third overall pick.
Writes Kiper: "With great quickness for his size, he can take up blockers and still provide a push as a 3-4 defensive end, perhaps solidifying that scheme for the Bills. A safe pick at No. 3."
Dareus is a 6'3", 319-pound force that displays great power on the field, and surprising athleticism in shorts. Though he's not as strong a chase player as other highly-touted defensive linemen, Dareus is stouter at the point of attack, and could play end in a 3-4 or tackle in a 4-3. His presence, however, would likely push 2010 second-round pick Torell Troup to reserve status no matter the front.
Also: who says rooting for a crappy football team doesn't have its perks? Our team's pick appears before the ESPN In$ider pay wall. That's a beautiful thing.