Over the past two-plus weeks, we have been dissecting the Buffalo Bills on offense, position-by-position, as we gear up for the next phase of what has already been a very interesting offseason in Orchard Park.
Now that that legwork is completed, it's time to prioritize the team's needs on that side of the ball. Before we get to that, however, here are the links at which you can catch up on anything you missed, and a list of the players profiled in each specific positional analysis.
- QB: EJ Manuel
- RB: Fred Jackson, C.J. Spiller, Anthony Dixon, Bryce Brown
- WR: Sammy Watkins, Robert Woods, Chris Hogan, Marquise Goodwin
- TE: Scott Chandler, Lee Smith, MarQueis Gray, Chris Gragg
- OT: Cordy Glenn, Seantrel Henderson, Chris Hairston, Cyrus Kouandjio
- OG: Erik Pears, Chris Williams, Kraig Urbik, Cyril Richardson
- C: Eric Wood
Among that group of players, five will hit free agency in a little over a month, and two more will be players that the team will almost certainly consider releasing to free up additional cap room. Those six players:
- RB Spiller: unrestricted free agent
- WR Hogan: exclusive rights free agent
- TE Chandler: $2.25M saved against cap if released
- TE Smith: unrestricted free agent
- OT Hairston: restricted free agent
- OG Pears: unrestricted free agent
- OG Urbik: $2.28M saved against cap if released
One could fairly easily argue that the Bills have needs at every one of these positions, and that's because they do, to varying degrees. But without question, some needs are more urgent than others - and the team also values certain positions more highly than others, too, which should be a consideration. Finally, the team is also switching offensive schemes, with new coordinator Greg Roman transitioning the outfit to one that will run the football early and often.
With all of that in mind, here's how I would order the Bills' needs on offense. How does your list differ?
- QB: Top of the list since 1997.
- OG: Zero sure-fire starters here.
- OT: One sure-fire starter here.
- RB: Fresh legs are needed.
- TE: Modernization is needed.
- C: In need of a developmental prospect.
- WR: In need of a guy with size.