The Buffalo Bills made some bold moves during the 2014 NFL Draft to solidify their roster and go all-in on a playoff push next season. That means some folks were left out in the cold, while others received votes of confidence. Who makes which list and do you agree?
In the first round, the Bills took the top offensive playmaker in the draft in an effort provide Manuel with more weapons. They also added three offensive linemen and a running back without taking a quarterback. The entire Bills' organizational might is behind Manuel; now it's his time to step up.
When they took Sammy Watkins and bypassed their likely pick of Eric Ebron at No. 9, Moeaki got his chance. After injuries derailed a once-promising career, he'll have an opportunity to be a big weapon in the team's passing game if he earns it this offseason. With a Top 10 pick on board, that would have been much more difficult.
Moving from a 3-4 to the 4-3 isn't doing Lawson any favors, but the Bills didn't draft a defensive end this weekend, so he will get plenty of reps this offseason and into the season to prove he can make the transition.
Some might put him in the "Losers" category because his job as top wideout was taken and he was shipped out to be a third receiver. Here's the thing, though: Johnson is going to a top contender in his backyard to work with a top coach. It might sting to be traded, but he couldn't have ended up in a much better situation, and to this point hasn't had to restructure his contract.
If it was unclear before this weekend, Doug Whaley has complete control over this roster and the football decisions and his vision is beginning to take shape. It's also clear that Doug Marrone has a big hand in shaping the roster, adding his big linemen and shipping out a receiver he wasn't infatuated with. These guys have the power and the aggressiveness to give it their best shot in 2014 without any handcuffs. Ultimately, their success depends on the guy they picked last year - Manuel.
A long-rumored salary cap casualty, Pears is staring up at a younger mammoth offensive tackle the Bills drafted to be their "ideal right tackle." With a hefty cap figure of almost $3.5 million, he might not even start training camp at right tackle.
While they didn't add direct competition for him, when Buffalo drafted a cornerback (and had a multitude of cornerbacks in for visits), it became clear they were leaning toward Corey Graham playing free safety. Several folks had Williams penciled in to get that first shot despite not playing much as a rookie in 2013. It will be hard for him to get playing time in 2014, too, assuming that the highly-paid veteran is in front of him.
Buffalo didn't draft a tight end, but by trading for Bryce Brown, they ensured they would keep four running backs on the roster. That could squeeze out the fullback position entirely, as Anthony Dixon could handle those duties on the limited number of plays the position is employed. If they elect to keep Summers, Chris Gragg could find himself on the outs instead.
Bills draft enthusiasts, this time next year
Predicting first rounders is tough enough, and now Bills fans will have to wait at least 32 picks and an entire night before Buffalo picks. The prospects become more obscure, and talking heads won't be doing much analysis about your football team. Mock drafts will lose most of their value.