Brandon Beane has been the general manager of the Buffalo Bills for two NFL Draft cycles. In that time, he has managed to show a preference for one particular conference while simultaneously scouring smaller schools for diamonds in the rough.
In 2019, Buffalo made eight draft picks, just as they did during the 2018 Draft. This year, the Bills drafted five players from “Power-Five” conferences, the same number as last year. They also spent their first choice on a player who does not play in a “Power-Five” conference for the second consecutive year. Last year, the choice was quarterback Josh Allen, who played in the Mountain West Conference at Wyoming. This year, the choice was defensive tackle Ed Oliver, who played in the American Athletic Conference at Houston.
Two of Buffalo’s “Power-Five” picks in 2019 were SEC players—tight end Dawson Knox, chosen in the third round (96 overall), and linebacker Vosean Joseph, selected in the fifth round (147 overall). Another “Power-Five” choice, offensive lineman Cody Ford (second round; 38 overall), played at Oklahoma, which is a Big 12 school.
Buffalo continued its trend of selecting multiple ACC players in this year’s draft, choosing Miami (Fl.) safety Jaquan Johnson in the fifth round and Boston College tight end Tommy Sweeney in the seventh round. That gives Beane a total of six players chosen from ACC schools in two drafts. Last year, the team chose linebacker Tremain Edmunds (16 overall) and guard Wyatt Teller (166 overall), both from Virginia Tech. Additionally, they selected two ACC wide receivers late in the draft, taking Clemson wideout Ray-Ray McCloud III in Round Six (187 overall) and North Carolina wideout Austin Proehl in Round Seven (255 overall).
Buffalo spent a third-round choice this year on a running back from a small conference, making Florida Atlantic’s Devin Singletary their choice at 74 overall. They also chose FCS edge rusher Darryl Johnson our of North Carolina A&T in the seventh round (225 overall).