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Modrak Critiques Willis, Pittman

SBN Mock Draft at Field Gulls.

In a sure sign that the draft is irritatingly close - and that the media and fans are oh-so-ready for it to begin - the Bills had a pre-draft press conference today to discuss, among other things, the draft and Michael Turner. (By the way, Levy doesn't see a Turner trade coming.)

Obviously, GM Marv Levy and Assistant GM Tom Modrak had their hands tied a bit and couldn't say much, but some of the things they were able to say were intriguing. For this blogger, I loved to hear what Modrak - who, for all intents and purposes, is the Bills' "prospect guru" - had to say about my choices in the SBN Mock Draft.

As you well know, I chose Mississippi MLB Patrick Willis in the first round. Here's what Modrak had to say about this draft's elite LB prospect:

"He's really fast. In his case his timed speed supports his ability to run on the field. He can run, he can get to the ball anywhere on the field. He'll cover the field. Just by his numbers he makes a lot of plays which sometimes on defense can be deceiving, but in his case it's not. He makes a lot of plays."

This is why I moved up to choose Willis. He makes plays. The Bills, more than anything, need an impact player with their first-round selection. Willis, to me, ranks among this draft's best defensive playmakers, with only elite prospects such as Gaines Adams and LaRon Landry in contention. He is a difference-maker, and Buffalo desperately needs that at the linebacking position. It was nice to hear some good words on Willis from Modrak.

The media also grilled Modrak about my second-round choice, Ohio State RB Antonio Pittman. In the words of Tom:

"We like him. He's a strong runner. He's a break tackle runner. He ran 4.4 at the combine which was a little surprising. He's a 205 or 210 pound guy. He's not that 235 (pound) break tackle runner, but he has that ability. He catches the ball well. He gives you a little bit of everything. If you put the check marks in the boxes he gets them all pretty good."

More good news! This was a bit more of a self-esteem boost for me than the Willis praise. Modrak seems intrigued by Pittman's potential (as are a lot of people drafting in the second-third rounds), and I love that the team sees him as a guy who gives you a little bit of everything. That's exactly what this team needs - but they don't need it right away with the A-Train in town. I am starting to truly believe that the Willis/Pittman 1-2 combo is really the way the Bills should go on draft day.

To read more player critiques (i.e. Brian Leonard, Adrian Peterson and Marshawn Lynch), visit Chris Brown's blog. He's got some nice write-ups from the presser today.