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Billieve Podcast: Projecting who’s in and who’s cut at DE

The Bills have some difficult decisions to make at defensive end.

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The Buffalo Bills have infused their defensive line with an influx of talent following the selection of Gregory Rousseau and Carlos “Boogie” Basham Jr., a pair of edge rushers, with their first- and second-round draft picks. But they now have a logjam at the position with nine defensive ends on the roster.

On the latest episode of the Billieve Podcast, hosts John Boccacino and Jamie D’Amico break down Buffalo’s defensive ends now that the draft has been completed and look ahead to some of the difficult decisions general manager Brandon Beane is going to have to make with all of the talent at this position.

Our podcasters assess how Rousseau and Basham will fit into Buffalo’s 4-3 defense in 2021, analyzing the strengths and weaknesses of both of Buffalo’s rookie edge rushers.

After dissecting the rookies, Boccacino and D’Amico speculate on how many defensive ends the Bills will keep, and who should make the roster, and who will find themselves on the outside looking in.

It appears there are five “locks” to make the roster in Rousseau, Basham, A.J. Epenesa, Jerry Hughes, and Mario Addison, especially with general manager Brandon Beane committing to keeping Addison and the team not saving that much by releasing him.

We also take a moment to celebrate the under-appreciated Hughes, who was No. 2 in the NFL in his pass-rush win rate last year behind only Pittsburgh’s T.J. Watt and who continues to be an invaluable contributor to the pass rush and a stout run defender.

Assuming the Bills will keep either five or six defensive ends, that means one roster spot remains for: Darryl Johnson, Efe Obada, Bryan Cox. Jr., and Mike Love.—and we make the case for who should earn that final spot.

Check out the latest Billieve Podcast for our thoughts on who should make the roster at defensive end, then join the conversation by leaving your thoughts in the comments section below.

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