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Mel Kiper mock draft 2016: Jonathan Allen to Buffalo Bills

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In Mel Kiper's first mock draft of 2016 for ESPN.com, the Buffalo Bills take a talented, versatile defensive lineman from Alabama. That worked out okay the last time they did it.

The grandfather of NFL draft reporting, Mel Kiper of ESPN, may be a divisive figure in today's NFL media landscape, where amateurs, former football players, online journalists, and other reporters are analyzing the draft to new depths. But that doesn't make him any less relevant. Kiper's been at this for decades, and has connections in NFL front offices, so when he publishes something, fans of the draft should sit up and pay attention.

Kiper released his first 2016 mock draft today. In it, Kiper has the Buffalo Bills selecting Alabama defensive end Jonathan Allen.

19. Buffalo Bills *Jonathan Allen, DE, Alabama

Will there be a tandem under more pressure to see improvement out a defense than the Ryan brothers in Buffalo? It's probably not close. Allen is a get at this slot; he's a versatile D-lineman with the frame to win with quickness on occasion but also push the pocket from the interior. The Bills are going to need to re-tool on the D-line even beyond the draft, and Allen would be a solid addition.

Versatility is an asset in Rex Ryan's defense, and Allen definitely brings that to the table, having played defensive end and defensive tackle in Alabama's talented front. The 6'3", 280-pound edge rusher has awesome power in his hands, and makes great results out of his bull-and-jerk pass rush move. He was Alabama's best pass rusher this season, doing great work even when double teamed. While he will sometimes lose contain on speed backs when trying to set the edge, he's one of the better disruptive forces in this year's draft.

Allen would be a potential Mario Williams replacement, able to rush the passer or set the edge and play multiple gaps.