The NFL Draft is littered with opportunities to second-guess a team’s selection, and this past May’s draft was no exception. The New York Giants were certainly pleased with the production of running back Saquon Barkley (more than 2,000 all-purpose yards), but what if the G-Men had instead used the high draft pick to select Eli Manning’s replacement?
Operating under this premise, ESPN asked its NFL Nation team of reporters to re-draft the 2018 draft. In this scenario, the Buffalo Bills used all four of their original first- and second-round draft picks (Nos. 12 and 22 in the first round, and 53 and 56 in the second round) as no trades were allowed.
In the re-draft, the Cleveland Browns still selected Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield No. 1 overall, while the Giants drafted USC quarterback Sam Darnold instead of Barkley, at No. 2, and the New York Jets tabbed Josh Allen at No. 3.
The Browns then chose Barkley with pick No. 4, followed by the Denver Broncos selecting outside linebacker Bradley Chubb at No. 5, and the Indianapolis Colts drafting G Quenton Nelson at No. 6.
With the seventh overall pick, which Buffalo originally traded up to in order to select Allen, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers drafted safety Derwin James.
After the Miami Dolphins selected Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson with the 11th pick, in this re-draft the Bills used pick No. 12 to select Josh Rosen as their quarterback of the future.
Mike Rodak, ESPN’s Buffalo Bills reporter, included this note about the Rosen pick:
“Some Bills fans were upset during the draft when Buffalo traded up to No. 7 and took Allen, instead of Rosen. Some might be not be happy that Rosen is the choice here, but he is the only remaining quarterback who makes sense without the ability to trade up,” Rodak said.
Allen wound up completing 52.8 percent of his passes for 2,074 yards with ten touchdown passes and 12 interceptions, adding 631 rushing yards with eight touchdowns (averaging 7.1 yards per rush) while establishing himself as a dual-threat for the Bills.
Rosen, meanwhile, completed 55.2 percent of his passes for 2,278 yards with 11 touchdowns and 14 interceptions during his rookie season.
With their second first-round pick, instead of drafting middle linebacker Tremaine Edmunds (taken by the Seattle Seahawks at No. 18), the Bills addressed their shaky offensive line, selecting Ohio State standout center Billy Price at pick No. 22.
“The Bills’ offensive line was a disaster, and it will be a focal point of the 2019 offseason. (Frank) Ragnow would have been the choice here, but the Bills will settle for Price,” Rodak said.
With their two second-round selections, the Bills drafted San Diego State running back Rashad Penny with pick No. 53, and added South Carolina tight end Hayden Hurst with pick No. 56. Penny rushed for 419 yards with two touchdowns on 85 carries, while Hurst caught 13 passes for 163 yards with one touchdown his rookie season.
So Bills fans, which combination would you rather have? Allen and Edmunds, or the combination of Rosen, Price, Penny, and Hurst? Vote in our poll and express your thoughts in our comments section.
Which set of players would you rather have?
This poll is closed
QB Josh Allen and MLB Tremaine Edumnds
QB Josh Rosen, C Billy Price, RB Rashad Penny, and TE Hayden Hurst