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Pre-NFL Draft Buffalo Bills depth chart, 2019

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The Bills added a lot of players in free agency.

The Buffalo Bills entered the 2019 offseason with many holes on their roster. They addressed a very large number of them in the first few days of free agency and continued building depth. Here is where the roster stands now, at roughly the same number of players as they had heading into the 2018 NFL Draft.

Note: Players are listen in alphabetical order in the body of the article but an unofficial depth chart appears at the end of the article. Free-agent additions are marked with an *

Quarterback

Josh Allen
Derek Anderson
Matt Barkley

This position would seem to be set with the “franchise quarterback,” veteran backup, and veteran mentor roles all neatly slotted. They will likely bring in a fourth quarterback at some point for minicamp or training camp. No changes were made during free agency.

Running Back

Patrick DiMarco
Keith Ford
Frank Gore*
LeSean McCoy
Marcus Murphy
Senorise Perry*
Christian Wade* (Not listed on team’s official roster)

Will LeSean McCoy be the lead back in 2019? Buffalo needs to get younger here, but instead they signed the oldest running back they could; Frank Gore. DiMarco is seemingly entrenched as the fullback. Buffalo released Chris Ivory after signing Gore.

Wide Receiver

Cole Beasley*
Victor Bolden, Jr.
John Brown*
Robert Foster
Zay Jones
Ray-Ray McCloud III
Isaiah McKenzie
Cam Phillips
Andre Roberts*
Da’Mari Scott
D’haquille Williams*

Buffalo churned this portion of their roster most in 2019 free agency. John Brown and Cole Beasley should be in line for a ton of playing time in 2019, knocking Robert Foster to a complementary role. Former draft picks will need to work hard just to keep a roster spot.

Tight End

Jason Croom
Tyler Kroft*
Jake Fisher*

Kroft is the de facto starter and has the most playing time at the NFL level. Croom hasn’t proven anything at the NFL level. Fisher was a tackle on the Cincinnati Bengals until this offseason, when he switched to tight end full-time.

Interior O-line

Russell Bodine
Ike Boettger
Vlad Ducasse
Jon Feliciano*
Spencer Long*
Mitch Morse*
Quinton Spain*
Wyatt Teller

Morse was the crown jewel of free agency in Buffalo, signing the most lucrative contract for a center in NFL history. Spain signed late but has a ton of starting experience with the Titans. Teller, Bodine, and Ducasse all started games in 2018 but Long signed for decent money and Boettger received some playing time. Where everyone will shake out is still up in the air.

Offensive tackle

Dion Dawkins
Conor McDermott
Ty Nsekhe*
Jeremiah Sirles
LaAdrian Waddle*

Buffalo needed a starter. Do they think the newly-signed Nsekhe is going to step into that role or will they draft someone? Waddle is a backup at best, along with Sirles and McDermott.

Defensive End

Eli Harold*
Jerry Hughes
Shaq Lawson
Mike Love
Trent Murphy
Eddie Yarbrough

Buffalo has a lot of uncertainty around this group, as Hughes, Lawson, Yarbrough, and Harold aren’t under contract past 2019. Buffalo could still add a free agent, draft a player, trade one of these guys, or release guys. It’s low-key wide open at defensive end this offseason.

Defensive Tackle

Star Lotulelei
Kyle Peko
Harrison Phillips
Jordan Phillips
Robert Thomas

Jordan Phillips just signed a medium-sized contract extension to be a major part of the rotation following the retirement of Kyle Williams. Buffalo will likely add a piece here to act as a penetrating pass-rush presence at the 3-tech in the absence of the veteran.

Linebacker

Lorenzo Alexander
Maurice Alexander*
Tremaine Edmunds
Deon Lacey
Matt Milano
Julian Stanford
Corey Thompson

Lorenzo Alexander will probably play some defensive line as a pass-rushing specialist in addition to his role at linebacker. Maurice Alexander has starting experience at safety and could be a passing down presence. With two young studs, this position might be the most set on the roster.

Cornerback

E.J. Gaines*
Kevin Johnson*
Taron Johnson
Ryan Lewis
Lafayette Pitts
Denzel Rice
Levi Wallace
Tre’Davious White

Buffalo needed another cornerback capable of playing significant snaps and seemingly found two in Kevin Johnson and E.J. Gaines. Taron Johnson’s injury meant a safety was playing nickel cornerback a year ago and Wallace was the team’s fourth choice at outside cornerback behind Vontae Davis, Phillip Gaines, and Ryan Lewis. This position is likely set heading into April.

Safety

Rafael Bush
Micah Hyde
Dean Marlowe
Siran Neal
Jordan Poyer

Bush was the team’s third safety in 2018 and played Big Nickel cornerback, as well. Buffalo could upgrade at that spot if they want or keep this group status quo.

Specialists

Corey Bojorquez (punter)
Cory Carter (punter)
Reid Ferguson (long snapper)
Stephen Hauschka (kicker)
Andre Roberts (kick returner)*

The Bills are going to have a Cory/Corey battle at punter, it would seem. Both ended the year on injured reserve after different injuries. Hauschka was also hurt and struggled down the stretch, but we’d be surprised if they moved on from him. Ferguson just signed an extension.


Unofficial depth chart

2019 Buffalo Bills’ Unofficial Offseason Workout Depth Chart

Position Starter Backup Reserve Reserve
Position Starter Backup Reserve Reserve
QB Josh Allen Matt Barkley Tyree Jackson#
RB LeSean McCoy Devin Singletary+ Marcus Murphy Senorise Perry*
RB Frank Gore* T.J. Yeldon* Christian Wade*
FB Patrick DiMarco
WR1 Zay Jones Victor Bolden, Jr. Duke Williams* David Sills#/Nick Easley
WR2 John Brown* Robert Foster Cam Phillips Da'Mari Scott
WR3 Cole Beasley* Isaiah McKenzie Andre Roberts* Ray-Ray McCloud
TE 1 Tyler Kroft* Dawson Knox+ Jason Croom
TE 2 Lee Smith* Tommy Sweeney+ Moral Stephens#
LT Dion Dawkins LaAdrian Waddle* Conor McDermott Blake Hance#
LG Quinton Spain* Wyatt Teller Vlad Ducasse
C Mitch Morse* Russell Bodine
RG Spencer Long* Jon Feliciano* Ike Boettger Garret McGhin
RT Ty Nsekhe* Cody Ford+ Jeremiah Sirles
LE Jerry Hughes Mike Love Eddie Yarbrough Darryl Johnson, Jr.+
NT Star Lotulelei Harrison Phillips Kyle Peko
DT Ed Oliver+ Jordan Phillips Robert Thomas Quindarius Thagard#
RE Trent Murphy Shaq Lawson Eli Harold
SLB Lorenzo Alexander Deon Lacey Corey Thompson Tyrel Dodson#
MLB Tremaine Edmunds Julian Stanford
WLB Matt Mliano Maurice Alexander* Vosean Joseph+ Juwan Foggie#
CB Tre'Davious White Kevin Johnson* Lafayette Pitts Cam Lewis#
FS Jordan Poyer Dean Marlowe Jaquan Joseph+ Abraham Wallace#
SS Micah Hyde Rafael Bush Siran Neal
NB Taron Johnson
CB Levi Wallace E.J. Gaines* Ryan Lewis Denzel Rice
K Stephen Hauschka Chase McLaughlin#
P Corey Bojorquez Cory Carter
LS Reid Ferguson
KR Andre Roberts*

Draft Needs

Several main needs populate this depth chart:

  • Tight End: Buffalo needs a tight end that can play significant snaps. This position could be the pick in any round and don’t be surprised if they add two.
  • 3-tech Defensive Tackle: The penetrating position on the defensive line hasn’t replaced Kyle Williams since he retired. It could be the pick at 9 or anywhere further down the draft list. Don’t be surprised if they add two.
  • Defensive End: With multiple players entering the final year of their deals, Buffalo could pick to improve the pass rush now and solidify going into the future all in one fell swoop.
  • Offensive tackle: Do they trust Dion Dawkins? Ty Nsehke is 33 and never been asked to be a full-time starter.
  • Wide Receiver: After the free agent spending, it’s moved down the list, but adding a solid number 1 or 2 receiver gives them flexibility.
  • Running Back: They need to bring down the age of this group in a big way.
  • Defensive positions like linebacker, cornerback, and safety could all use depth and developmental options.