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2020 NFL Draft: Reinforcements at guard

If Buffalo wants to upgrade their left guard position, here are the players they will be looking at.

In early April, the Buffalo Bills signed guard Quinton Spain to a one-year contract in what essentially amounted to an afterthought. Spain had spent four uneventful seasons with the Tennessee Titans, where he started 48 games at left guard, and wasn’t re-signed. So he came over to Buffalo on a cheap one-year deal and played decently, if not spectacularly. The veteran could likely turn that into a decent contract, which general manager Brandon Beane might not be willing to shell out for such a middle-class player. In that case, the team could look to the draft, which is never really short on interior offensive-line prospects. Below are just a few of the players the Bills might consider.

Tier I

Tyler Biadasz (Wisconsin)
John Simpson (Clemson)
Ben Bredeson (Michigan)

The Wisconsin center is exactly what you’d expect coming from that program—not the strongest or the most athletic, but he gets the job done consistently. Simpson hasn’t received much first-round hype, but I expect that to change after declaring for the draft. The big Clemson guard pass protected Trevor Lawrence really well all throughout the college football playoffs. A balanced, well-coached player, Bredeson will become a starter immediately for the team that drafts him.

Tier II

Nick Harris (Washington)
Trey Smith (Tennessee)
Creed Humphrey (Oklahoma)
Matt Hennessy (Temple)

Harris moves so well as a blocker that it would be hard to see him not end up in a Shanahan West-Coast style, zone-blocking scheme. Tennessee’s Smith is exactly the opposite. He has the power to move trucks, but injury questions hold him back. Oklahoma is becoming known for their athletic offensive lineman who can do well in space, and Humphrey is another one in that line. It’s a shame that Hennessy doesn’t have the size or athleticism to play for every franchise, because some team is getting a technician.

Tier III

Robert Hunt (Louisiana)
Darryl Williams (Mississippi State)
Logan Stenberg (Kentucky)

A likely riser, Hunt toiled for the Raggin’ Cajuns but is starting to get noticed for his pro-ready traits. Darryl Williams has the look of an NFL starting guard or center but he doesn’t stand out in any one area. Stenberg is strong, but there’s worry that he doesn’t have the flexibility of a starting guard, so he may end up like former Bills guard John Miller.

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