The Buffalo Bills' wide receiver corps will look much different in 2013. Gone are Donald Jones and David Nelson, two of Buffalo's top receivers for the last three seasons. With 2012 third-round selection T.J. Graham tenuously penciled in opposite Stevie Johnson, general manager Buddy Nix may opt to add a starter in this April's 2013 NFL Draft.
"We're certainly looking at wide receiver," Nix said in December about the upcoming draft. Noting that Buffalo needed to add a franchise quarterback, too, he mentioned the Cincinnati Bengals' approach that earned them a playoff nod in two consecutive seasons after taking A.J. Green and Andy Dalton with their top two picks in 2012.
"There are quite a few receivers that can come in and be a No. 1 or 2 in Buffalo [this year]," says Dan Kadar from SB Nation's Mocking the Draft. "That's not saying anything about who Buffalo has, but it's more to the talent in the draft this year.
"Most immediately - like in their first or second year - DeAndre Hopkins (Clemson), Keenan Allen (Cal) and Cordarrelle Patterson (Tennessee) fit," continued Kadar, essentially going down his wide receiver rankings. "Tavon Austin (West Virginia) could be classified that, though he's a slot guy. Justin Hunter (Tennessee), Da'Rick Rogers (Tennessee Tech), Aaron Dobson (Marshall) and Quinton Patton (Louisiana Tech) could all get there too. Robert Woods of USC may, though I want to see if anything comes up with his health."
With no wide receiver in the top 20 spots on Kadar's big board, the Bills won't have the value with the eighth pick to snag a wide receiver that early. There will likely be candidates in the second and even third round for wide outs who can come in and play significant snaps for Doug Marrone in 2013.