The Buffalo Bills are not a team that emphasizes the run game. Why would they be with a stud quarterback in Josh Allen? The key to Buffalo’s running game is efficiency rather than volume. The Bills made some changes in the running back room this offseason, swapping out Devin Singletary for a pair of veterans, and adding a pair of undrafted rookies to the mix for competition.
Given that the team invested a second-round pick in a running back last year — the third Day 2 choice on a running back since the 2019 NFL Draft — it’s safe to assume that player will take the lead role in the backfield. However, with Buffalo’s emphasis on rotation at the position and the passing game in general on offense, there are openings for role players to find a niche in offensive coordinator Ken Dorsey’s attack.
In today’s edition of “90 players in 90 days,” we profile one of the undrafted rookies Buffalo signed at running back this spring.
Name: Jordan Mims
Height/Weight: 6’, 205 pounds
Age: 23 (24 on 6/16/2023)
Experience/Draft: R; signed with Buffalo as UDFA following the 2023 NFL Draft
College: Fresno State
Acquired: UDFA signing
Financial situation (per Spotrac): Mims signed a three-year deal worth a total of $2.707 million this offseason. Of that total, the Bills gave him a $12,000 signing bonus. That’s his dead-cap hit if he’s cut this offseason. If he makes the roster, Mims carries a 2023 cap hit of $754,000.
2022 Recap: Mims set career highs in attempts, rushing yards, and rushing touchdowns in his senior season, carrying 261 times for 1,372 yards and 18 touchdowns. That touchdown total was the most in school history. He did that while playing in all 14 of the Bulldogs’ games. In Fresno State’s 29-6 victory over Washington State in the Jimmy Kimmel LA Bowl, Mims carried 18 times for 209 yards and two touchdowns. He was named Offensive Player of the Game for his efforts. Mims also was First-Team All-Mountain West last season. He ends his tenure with the Bulldogs in fourth all-time on the team’s rushing yardage list, trailing only Robbie Rouse, Ron Rivers, and Ronnie Rivers.
Positional outlook: Mims finds himself in the middle of a new-look backfield, and while there may be some familiar faces in the crowd, those faces may have new roles this year. James Cook and Nyheim Hines return from last year’s squad. Veterans Damien Harris and Latavius Murray signed as free agents. The Bills also added another undrafted rookie, Isaiah Bowser, to round out the running back group. Fullback Reggie Gilliam is the seventh backfield member on the roster.
2023 Offseason: Mims is healthy, and he participated in the team’s rookie minicamp earlier in May.
2023 Season outlook: While it’s unlikely that Mims makes the roster and contributes on game day, it’s quite likely that he becomes a preseason darling and shows well this summer. Mims is a big, bruising runner who isn’t terribly fast, but he offers versatility in the passing game and a nose for the end zone. He also hasn’t fumbled an offensive touch since his freshman year at Fresno St. in 2017, something that’s sure to make his coaches happy in the pros if he can continue that streak. With Cook, Hines, and Harris all likely to make the team, Mims is probably fighting Murray for the last spot on the active roster. That’s not an impossible ask, but I imagine that the Bills would ideally keep the veteran this year and give either Mims or Bowser (or perhaps both) the chance to work out on the practice squad for the year before giving them a second look next offseason. In any case, Mims is a pretty high-quality addition to the team via undrafted free agency.