Nick O’Leary, one of the Buffalo Bills’ sixth-round draft picks from 2015, has dropped to the bottom of the tight end depth chart, according to BuffaloBills.com. A year ago, O’Leary was the fourth of five tight ends in terms of usage, seeing the field on just 5.4% of Buffalo’s offensive snaps after be signed off the practice squad in December.
With Matthew Mulligan and Marqueis Gray leaving for other teams, O’Leary seemed positioned to see some more reps, with just Charles Clay and Chris Gragg on the roster ahead of him. That position was short-lived as the Bills have since brought in Jim Dray and Blake Annen. Both quickly supplanted O’Leary in the rotation during spring practices as Chris Brown reports.
“Dray is the clear blocking tight end for this offense.” Annen, who was listed by our own Dan Lavoie as a young Bill who may surprise this preseason, compares very well to Chris Gragg and both “run well and offer more size and athleticism than O’Leary.”
If he is not the most athletic, and not the best blocker, than O’Leary does not have much to offer the Bills as a traditional tight end. Brown writes that O’Leary will need to “highlight his versatility as much as possible when put in a move tight end role or H-back set.” This means O’Leary is also likely competing with Glenn Gronkowski for a spot on the roster that might not even exist.
Nick O’Leary seems to be the odd man out and will have an uphill battle if he wants to make the 53-man roster.