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Buffalo Bills 2000s All-Decade Team: Strong Safety

Matt Warren is Associate Director of NFL coverage for SB Nation and previously covered the Bills for Buffalo Rumblings for more than a decade.

The Buffalo Bills have only had two strong safeties enter more than one season in the decade as the designated starter. Henry Jones, Coy Wire, and George Wilson all have one season as the primary strong safety, whereas Lawyer Milloy and Donte Whitner each started more than half the games in three seasons.

Henry Jones
Another of our more fondly-remembered players from the golden years, Jones would certainly be on the 1990s All-Decade after starting 113 games in the '90s. However, we're here to talk about his accomplishments in the past decade. Jones was 33 in his final year in Buffalo, but started all 16 games in 2000 at strong safety. He had two interceptions, returning one for a touchdown, a fumble recovery, and 45 tackles as part of the third-ranked Bills defense.

Coy Wire
Wire was a safety and linebacker for the Bills, but 15 of his 21 career starts came at the strong safety spot in his rookie year. In his six years, he combined for five sacks, three passes defended, one forced fumble, two recovered fumbles, and 133 tackles, including 71 in his rookie year. The Bills ranked sixth against the pass in 2002, Wire's only season starting more than three games.

Lawyer Milloy
Buffalo signed the 30-year-old Milloy off a Pro Bowl season with the Patriots in 2002. He started 43 games for the Bills in his three seasons with the squad, compiling eight sacks, three picks, 18 passes defended, two forced fumbles, two recovered fumbles, and 184 tackles. In 2003 and 2004, the Bills ranked second in total defense with Milloy as the backstop.

Donte Whitner
Whitner was the first pick of the Marv Levy/Dick Jauron era. At eighth overall, he was supposed to provide big plays and instant impact. udge him based on his statistics: 50 starts in four seasons, one sack, four interceptions (one of which went back for a 76-yard touchdown), 12 passes defended, two forced fumbles, and 227 tackles. His tackles per game are virtually identical to Milloy's during his time in Buffalo. In 2009, the Bills defense was second in the NFL in interceptions and against the pass.

George Wilson
George Wilson has 24 starts at both safety spots in this decade, the majority at the strong safety position. Originally a wide receiver struggiling to make the roster, Wilson switched to safety and made the roster. Since 2005, he played 47 games in total, compiling 3.5 sacks and six interceptions taking one back for a touchdown in his first career start. He also added 10 passes defended, one forced fumble, three fumble recoveries including one for a touchdown, and 72 tackles.

Leave your voting rationale in the comments section. We finish our starting 22 next with the free safety.

Previous Installments: QB, RB 1, RB 2, WR 1, WR 2, TE, OT 1, OT 2, OG 1, OG 2, OC, P/K, DT 1, DT 2, DE 1, DE 2, OLB 1, OLB 2, MLB, CB 1, CB 2