There's no question that the Bills have undergone a major overhaul in the last year and a half. There are many questions regarding the decisions that were made and the make up of the team, not to mention the coordinators. I thought I'd take a look at our draft and the team in general.
Best case scenario: Perennial Pro-Bowler, a nightmare for DCs, opens up the offense for everyone else
Worst case scenario: Injury plagued career (that's the only thing that will stop him)
Reasonable expectation: Sammy has some highs and lows in his first season, but versatility makes him a player that needs to be accounted for on every play.
Best case scenario: The knee is fine, he develops into a 10-15 year pillar on the right side with the ability to move to the left side
Worst case scenario: The knee is still an issue, he peaked last year
Reasonable expectation: Cyrus will compete with Hairston for the starting spot. Either way we're better than we were at starter and depth (Pears is expendable) .
Best case scenario: Develops into a dominating 3 down ILB
Worst case scenario: Wasted a 3rd round pick on a gamble
Reasonable expectation: Contributes on ST as he learns from Spikes. Gives us an option next off-season.
Best case scenario: Starting CB talent
Worst case scenario: Depth player
Reasonable expectation: Contributes on ST and provides depth this year.
Best case scenario: Pro-Bowl LG (he was considered the best OG prospect through much of the season)
Worst case scenario: Never breaks into the starting line-up
Reasonable expectation: Competes with Williams and Urbik. Starts the season as interior depth (Legursky is expendable).
Best case scenario: ST stud, solid back-up on the outside
Worst case scenario: waste of a 7th round pick
Reasonable expectation: ST contributor if he makes the team.
Best case scenario: The fall from top HS recruit to bottom of the 7th round (and $15-20M pay difference) is the wake up call he needed. Becomes one of the league's best LTs
Worst case scenario: Doesn't make it through training camp
Reasonable expectation: Provides depth at OT. Either he works hard at rebuilding his career, or he's cut (nothing in between).
Best case scenario: Sammy makes us one of the league's best offenses, and a future SB contender. Stevie meets the conditions, we get a 3rd rounder next year, and the Brown trade turns into a 2016 pick (we end up with 7 picks next year with additional expendable players traded).
Worst case scenario: Stevie and Bryce don't excel, and we lose a 4th rounder. Sammy is a good player, but EJ needs to be replaced and we don't have 1st rounder next year.
Reasonable expectation: Sammy shows why he was considered the top WR in the draft. Stevie has a good year but doesn't meet the conditions, and we end up giving the pick to the Eagles. Bryce steps in and gives us a legitimate option in the backfield.
Best case scenario: Hackett scaled back his offense last year, but now he has has the players he needs. He gets creative with Sammy and CJ, and that opens up the offense for everybody else. Schwartz uses the talent he has to their maximum potential, and our run defense is solidified. Crossman has the talent and consistency he needs to execute his vision, and it works.
Worst case scenario: Hackett is still in over his head. Schwartz tries to fit our guys into his system, and it doesn't work. It turns out that Crossman was the problem.
Reasonable expectation: Hackett learned from his first year, and most of the players have a year of his philosophy under their belt. This year he starts to open it up. Schwartz isn't stupid. He'll figure out how to blend his philosophy with our talent, and we'll be just fine. ST will be better simply due to better players and more consistency. Crossman won't be considered a genius, and he might still be replaced, but it won't be an angry mob that's chasing him out of town.
Best case scenario: Year 2 under Marrone clicks. The patchwork FA defensive front 7 complements one of the league's better secondaries. Our OL becomes the one of the leagues best. EJ develops into a solid starting QB. Sammy was the missing piece that opens up one of the leagues most potent offenses. CJ has close to 2000 combined yards.
Worst case scenario: The whole house of cards comes tumbling down. Schwartz's defense doesn't work with our personnel. We shuffle players through the secondary, but never find the combination that works. Our OL is no better than last year, and EJ goes out with a season ending (potentially career ending) injury early, or he just doesn't develop into a legitimate starter.
Reasonable expectation: It takes 3-5 games to gel offensively and defensively, as well as ST. A healthy EJ looks better in his second year. We're a legitimate playoff caliber team in the second half of the year (the bye comes at the perfect time).