When will the Bills take a QB?

The Bills will take a QB in the draft this year, but when? It's that uncertainty that is making a mess of most mock drafts.

Buddy Nix likes to use the pre-draft process to get a final read on players he is strongly considering selecting, and 9 of the allowable 30 visits went to QB prospects. Can looking at the non-QB visitors give us a "peek under the hood" for where Buddy may be targeting a QB?

To establish possible draft positions for the non QB players, I've compiled an average draft rating for every draft prospect from the following five sources:

- USA Today/

- Brandt

- Rotoworld/NBC Sports

- CBS Sports/NFL

- SB Nation/Dan Kadar, Mocking the Draft

Interestingly, only 2 non-QB players grade out as likely picks at the #8 spot:

#4. Dion Jordan, RUSH LB

#11. Barkevious Mingo, RUSH LB

While the Bills could reach at #8, it looks like the only serious option at #8 other than a QB is a rushing LB/DE. Jordan is a consensus top 10 pick among most draft experts, while Mingo is consistently slotted in the 10-12 range.

What's interesting is that the Bills brought in for pre-draft visits four players that are expected to go in the bottom half of the 1st round:

#15. Cordarelle Patterson, WR

#17. Jarvis Jones, RUSH LB

#18. Kenny Vaccaro, S

#28. Alec Ogletree, ILB

Of course the Bills could select any of these players at #8, but they would potentially be considered poor value at that point in the draft- Patterson is considered highly talented but very much a long range development player, Jones had a poor combine and has health issues, while Ogletree has fallen due to off-field character concerns.

On the other hand, if Chris Brown and others are correct that the Bills are actively pursuing a trade-down strategy, then all of these players absolutely come into play.

For whatever reason, the Bills did not look extensively at non QB players with consensus 2nd round grades:

#44. Kevin Minter, ILB

#49. Justin Hunter, WR

But at the same time, they spent a significant amount of time looking at players with 3rd round grades:

#70. Da'Rick Rogers, WR

#74. Vance McDonald, TE

#76. Jamie Collins, OLB

#93. Ryan Swope, WR

#96. Phillip Thomas, S

In addition to those 5 players, S Sharmarko Thomas of Syracuse, another player the coaching staff knows well, has an average draft position of #81.

Of the remaining pre-draft visitors, all have 7th round or UDFA projections, with the exception of FB Kyle Juszczyk, who has a 5th round projection.

Possible conclusions?

Buddy has spent a significant time looking at 3rd round talent, which adds to the evidence that the Bills will draft a QB in rounds 1 or 2, and not wait until the 3rd round or later. This would probably eliminate the bottom QB prospects from being selected by the Bills this year- Bray, Landry Jones, Matt Scott, etc.

It is very interesting that the Bills spent more time looking at bottom 1R prospects rather than top 10 prospects- as discussed in the past, players like Chance Warmack, Dee Milliner and Ziggy Ansah were not on the Bills pre-draft visit list.

Could it be that the Bills are anticipating a trade down with a team such as St. Louis, Minnesota or San Francisco, allowing them to get all three of their primary targeted positions- QB, WR and OLB- in the bottom of the 1st round, top of the 2nd round? If so, the Bills could then follow through with a TE, S or 2nd WR in the 3rd round.

Dream scenario, anyone?

Just another great fan opinion shared on the pages of

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