Greetings Bills fan,
I am a Panthers fan who recently participated in a mock offseason over on Cat Scratch Reader, the Carolina Panthers SB Nation page. The idea was that 32 people would take control of a NFL franchise through free agency, the draft, and trades. I obviously volunteered to lead a makeover of the Buffalo Bills. I chose the Bills for what should become an obvious reasoning once looking through my draft. Living in the Carolinas, I grew up as a big Clemson University fan and C.J. Spiller was my favorite player when he went through Clemson. So, I have decided to bring you what I have done to the Buffalo Bills to see what you think. Hopefully, most of you think I did a good job.
-Note- The base roster we started with was the Buffalo Bill's roster as in sometime in January, so some big moves are not included. Which includes the release of QB Ryan Fitzpatrick and WR David Nelson or the retiring of DE Chris Kelsay
I started with the belief that the Buffalo Bills had a good roster just needed some polishing to make them into a contender. First thing I needed to solve was the QB issue. As you will see, I quickly took charge and added competition. Not the real sexy move, but I made a move for competition sake. I also took care of a certain player with a big contract who isn't performing well. I also wanted to build through the draft and through trades ended up with 12 draft picks. In the Free agency I collected as many players I could to create even more competition. So without further ado I will show you the trades that started off the whole ordeal.
The rules were that each GM could only use 3 trades, but was amended later to included 2 draft day trades. I only used two of the original trades but did use both of the draft day trades.-Original Trades
- Traded DE Mario Williams to the Chicago Bears for their 4th and 5th round draft picks
-The idea here was just to offload the underachieving player who I believed was just never going to fit
in with this team and play up to his pay level. I could have gotten more, however, I still believe I got value with this trade
-Traded Chicago's 4th round draft pick to the Dallas Cowboys for QB Kyle Orton
- Honestly, I think I messed up with this one. I could have gotten QB Alex Smith for the same price but I didn't think a 4th round pick was worth it, but I realized once I had the Orton trade in my lap that a 4th round pick was about right. I added competition for Fitzpatrick and maybe this pushes Fitz or Orton to the next level, who knows. I am following the Pete Carroll's strategy with finding a franchise Quarterback.
-Traded 2nd round draft pick to The Seattle Seahawks for their late 2nd, two 4ths, a 5th and 7th round draft picks
-This where I started to horde draft picks. I don't think I missed out on any prospects I wanted by moving to the tail end of the 2nd round. I think I hit a home run with this trade.
-Traded 3rd round draft pick to the Houston Texans for their 3rd and 6th round draft picks
-Honestly, this trade was done just because. While the Texans made the move to secure their prospect, I did it to... well to get even more draft picks.
The rules with free agency was that each team had $25 to spend no matter what the real life team had in their cap space. Also we had a bid style of free agency where whoever had the highest bid after 48 hours of the last bid, won the player. The top 5 free agents as indicated on Walter Football were the only players to enter free agency.Players won in Free Agency
-S Jarius Byrd (Franchised tagged for $6)
-This was a no-brainer. This move had to be made to secure the future at safety. Be rest assured that had Byrd reached free agency he we would have gone for much higher than $6 in our crazy free agency.
- G Chad Rhinehart ($4)
- Had to win Rhinehart after losing Levitire. This move helps keep stability at the guard position.
- OLB Justin Durant ($3)
-So after looking through the Bills roster it became apparent that they needed LB help in the worse way. This addition help with that issue and builds depth.
-OLB Larry Grant ($2)
-Like I said, yall needed a bunch of LB help, so he is someone else who can come in and help.
-DE Junior Galette ($2)
-With the trade of DE Williams, the Bills were in large need of a DE and this helps out a bit.
-WR David Nelson ($1)
-While not the best WR, he adds depth and can surely help out with the future WR corps.
-P Donnie Jones ($1)
-Jones ends up not making the final roster due to a rookie Punter who out-shines Jones.
-KR Joshua Cribbs ($1)
- I decided to let Mckelvin walk in free agency, so I needed someone who could go compete with C.J. Spiller for the returner jobs.
Now for my favorite part. Remember I had 12 draft picks, so I loaded up with talent here. So without further ado, here comes my draft picks
1st/8th DeMarcus Milner, CB, Alabama
-This pick fell right into my lap. Geno Smith went right before this pick, but I never planned to pick a QB this early. Milner allows us to have two good CBs who can lock down almost any WR tandem.
2nd/24th(56th) Justin Hunter, WR, Tennesse
-Other than Jonhson, there was nothing at the WR position. Going after Hunter allowed us to have more weapons here. Honestly, I wanted Hopkins, but he was gone even before my original 2nd round pick. However, Hunter is a great pick-up;
3rd/12th(74th) Ryan Nassib, QB, Syracuse
-Head Coach Doug Marrone wants his own QB, and believes his former college QB has want it takes. Plus Nassib already knows Marrone's system, so we would come in and help others to adjust.This pick allows more competition for Orton and Fitz. This is a great value pick, though he did go before Barkley, which went in the 4th round.
4th/8th(104th) Andre Ellington, RB, Clemson
-This was my first Clemson homer pick. Now we have a Clemson tandem and RB. Ellington should work out well as the backup to Spiller. Got home just in time to make this pick. Almost missed out.
4th/16th(112th) Ricky Wagner, OT, Wisconsin
-Wagner projects as the future at LT. This pick works out well.
4th/24th(120th) Xavier Nixon, OT, Florida
-So I lucked out that Nixon projects as a RT. I didn't really do much research before this pick, but I am glad I ended up not selecting two RTs or two LTs. Nixon is the future at RT.
5th/10th(138th) Vince Williams, MLB, Florida State
-Needing more LB help, Williams comes in and competes for the starter job on day one. He seems to be the future LB we need.
5th/20th(148th) Malicah Goodman,DE, Clemson
- What? I had to add more Clemson depth to this team. Goodman allows more depth at DE after the Williams trade.
5th/25th(153th) B.W. Webb,CB, William & Mary
-Needed more CB depth and I believe Webb allows us to make up for not bringing back McKelvin.
6th/9th Dalton Freeman, C, Clemson
-Yes, another Clemson Tiger. I had to do it. This guy is a beast and will push Wood from day one.
6th/27th Brad Wing, P, LSU
-This was a spur of the moment pick. Wing works out well at being the future at Punter for this team.
7th/14th Marcus Sales, WR, Syracuse
-I wanted the other Syracuse WR in Lemon, however, this pick also works. Sales will help Nassib with the transition into the NFL.
So before we get to my final 53 roster, I have included the players I have cut from the team. Maybe some of the cuts are big cuts, but I don't think they are.
-QB: Tyler Thigpen, Tarvaris Jackson
-I decided to keep Fitzpatrick for time being. Jackson was the easy cut, just doesn't fit with our scheme. Ironically, I have been a big Clemson homer through this mock offseason, but Thigpen is from the town I currently live in, but I end up cutting him.
-RB: Fred Jackson
-It was time to get rid of the 32 year old RB. While he did have his good years at Buffalo, it was time for a new backup behind C.J. Spiller.
-FB: Dorin Dickerson
-While he is the equivalent of the Panther's Richie Brockel as the versatile TE/FB, we just did not have the room for him on the roster.
-WR: Brad Smith, Ruvell Martin, Kevin Elliot, Chris Hogan
-These were all roster filler, so these were easy releases.
-TE: Mike Caussin
-Had to make room for Brandon Myers, so this was an easy decision
-LT: Chris Hairston, Thomas Welch
-More easy releases, just had to make room on the roster
-C: Colin Brown
-No longer needed him as backup because I drafted Freeman.
-RT: Sam Young, Chris Scott
-Easy releases. Just needed more room for drafted players.
-LE: Spencer Johnson
-What can I say? Just another depth player needed to go to make room for more depth
-DT: Jarron Gilbert, Jay Ross
-This was a position I did not need to do anything to, but cut the fat.
-RE: Chris Kelsay, Kyle Moore
-So Kelsay doesn't retire, but I cut him instead.
-LOLB: Nigel Bradham, Chris White, Greg Lloyd
-Just more fat being cut.
-MLB: Kirk Morrison
-This made room for draft pick Vince Williams to make the cut.
-ROLB: Byran Scott
-So the player who is staying with the real life Bills, I cut, go figure.
-CB: Crezdon Butler, T.J. Heath
-Had to make room for Milner and Webb.
-P: Shawn Powell, Donnie Jones
-There goes the old starter and the FA punter.
Finally The Final Roster