The Buffalo Bills drafted for need in the first round of the 2021 NFL Draft. With a lackluster pass rush in 2020 and a looming problem in 2021, the Bills selected defensive end Gregory Rousseau at pick 30. What happened after that was anybody’s guess.
Heading into the draft, Bills’ general manager Brandon Beane had said the team was drafting for long-term success and not just help in 2021, but he may have secured both in his next two picks, when he went with Wake Forest defensive end Carlos Basham Jr. and Northern Iowa offensive tackle Spencer Brown.
According to Beane, who spoke with the media following the third round on Friday night, Buffalo took the top players on their board at 61 and 93. In fact, they had a deal to trade down from 61 into the top of the third round but it was contingent on Basham not being there. They didn’t go into the night expecting to take another pass rusher, but when Basham was still available, they made the pick.
“You can never have enough pass rushers,” said Beane following his third straight defensive end pick in the top two rounds dating back to 2020. “I had hoped to find a pass rusher at some point in the draft. It worked out last night with Rousseau and Basham was sticking out on our board. The value was too good to pass up.”
With few holes on the roster, you can’t fault the Bills for going BPA even doubling up at a position where they like to platoon players. This is the best way to sustain success and a talented roster when picking so late.