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Behind enemy lines: talking Quinton Jefferson with Field Gulls

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John Gilbert gave his thoughts on one of Buffalo’s newest defensive linemen

San Francisco 49ers v Seattle Seahawks Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

The Buffalo Bills have made plenty of moves this offseason. While they have added to their defensive secondary and their receiving group, they have continued to invest plenty of money in the defensive line.

The Bills have added three new defensive linemen this March to replace Shaq Lawson (who signed with the Miami Dolphins) and Jordan Phillips (who signed with the Arizona Cardinals). One of the men signed to fill Phillips’s role is former Seattle Seahawks defensive lineman Quinton Jefferson.

To give us some perspective on Jefferson’s strengths and weaknesses, we reached out to our friends at Field Gulls, SB Nation’s blog for all things Seattle Seahawks. John Gilbert, one of the blog’s editors, was gracious enough to answer our call for info.


What are some of Jefferson’s strengths?

“Jefferson possesses pass rushing skills that are likely to surprise a lot of fans. He’s unlikely to put up monster sack numbers for the Bills in the coming years, but he’s no stranger to pressuring the quarterback and impacting the play. Over the past two years, he’s only recorded 6.5 sacks, but he has hit the opposing quarterback 25 times, including 17 knockdowns, while averaging almost three pressures per game. He’s got the size and speed to play both end and tackle depending on the opponent and situation, and Buffalo fans will likely grow to enjoy his contributions. Specifically, he’s very good when double teamed, posting a Pass Rush Win Rate when double teamed well above league average for defensive linemen. He doesn’t have the longest arms in the world (33-⅜”), but he does seem to have a knack for getting his arm into the passing lane at the right moment. He’s batted multiple balls at the line of scrimmage in each of the past two seasons, and between this and his ability to pressure the quarterback, he’ll likely have a solid impact in helping the Bills defend the pass.”

What are some of Jefferson’s weaknesses?

“While he certainly makes an impact in the passing game, his run defense is not quite what one might expect. He played 1-tech in a 3-4 in college, so when he was drafted many anticipated he’d be better against the run than rushing the passer; however, this turned out not to be the case. He’s far from the fastest or most powerful, and he will miss tackles at times.”

How did Seahawks fans react to losing him?

“A lot of fans were very upset to see him leave. He signed for two years for a little over half of what the Seahawks committed to retain Jarran Reed (two years, $23M), and there is certainly a group of fans who believe that Buffalo got the far better value.

QJeff also has a small group of very loyal fans who love his backstory. He was a little old at the time he was drafted because he’d been out of football and working at a Best Buy warehouse at one point in his life. Needless to say things have turned out well for him, and fans should enjoy both his performance and his work ethic going forward.”


Many thanks to John and to Mookie Alexander, managing editor at Field Gulls, for their help and insight!