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Bills Draft Gems, No. 8: DE Aaron Schobel

With the 2011 NFL Draft quickly approaching, we thought it'd be a good idea to run down the Buffalo Bills' ten biggest draft successes and failures. I decided at the last minute to make this an "of my lifetime" series, meaning that the only busts and gems that you'll see listed here every day were picked in 1985 or after.

I'll re-iterate something I said when talking about Buffalo's No. 1 draft bust, OT Mike Williams: Tom Donahoe really did get off to a good start in his tenure as Bills GM. His crowning draft achievement was selecting TCU defensive end Aaron Schobel in the second round of the 2001 NFL Draft.

Schobel, who retired prior to the start of the 2010 season after nine seasons as a pro, left the game as Buffalo's second-ranked sack artist in team history, trailing only Hall of Fame end Bruce Smith. Other than a 2008 season in which he was injured, Schobel appeared in 16 games per season, and never recorded fewer than 6.5 sacks in any of those fully healthy seasons. He finished his career with 78 sacks (fitting) and two Pro Bowl appearances.

Though he never made the post-season with Buffalo, and was not the big-game or big-play artist that makes legends, there's little doubt that Schobel was a consistent producer and a durable worker - a light during a period of great darkness for this franchise. For that, we salute him.

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