The Buffalo Bills enter the 2020 offseason with many holes on their roster. As the free-agency legal-tampering window gets under way this Monday, here is where the Bills’ roster stands:
Note: Players are listed in alphabetical order in the body of the article but an unofficial depth chart appears at the end of the article.
This position would seem to be mostly set with the “franchise quarterback” and veteran backup. They also have a depth option, but could still bring in someone to compete with Barkley or supplant Webb as the third QB. At a minimum, they will likely bring in a fourth quarterback at some point for minicamp or training camp.
There are a lot of folks who would like to see Wade get a shot at the active roster, but it’s a long shot. Buffalo is likely in the market for a starting-type running back in free agency or the draft to pair with Singletary. Yeldon is JAG (just a guy) and could be their third running back or off the roster by the time training camp rolls around.
Ray-Ray McCloud III
For the second straight year, the Bills are probably going to add some top-flight talent to the wide receiver room, though it’s more likely to come in the draft than free agency. What are their long-term plans for Williams and Foster?
Croom was literally the only name on the list at this point last year, but the Bills have built solid depth and could just stay status quo in 2020.
Buffalo added a bunch of players here last offseason, as well. Spain played well enough to garner a contract extension and the top five are all in place heading from 2019 into 2020.
Dawkins solidified himself as the starting left tackle last year after a shaky 2018. Ford, drafted in the second round last year, still has work to do to be an NFL-caliber tackle but could shift inside to guard and be elite. Nsekhe is old while Bates is green. This whole position could be overhauled or completely left alone.
Darryl Johnson Jr.
The Bills really need to address this group with the departure of Shaq Lawson and the underwhelming play of Murphy. Add in Hughes’s advancing age and the draft is a perfect place to improve. Don’t discount a big free-agent signing, though.
After losing Jordan Phillips, the Bills will need a rotational 3-tech DT to play behind Oliver, their 2019 first-round pick. Lotulelei agreed to a pay cut in order to stick in 2020 and Harrison Phillips is returning from injury. It’s a position group where we expect some action.
The loss of Alexander means Buffalo will be in the market for some kind of player at the linebacker position—we’re just not sure how much of a priority it’s going to be. This is where Buffalo likes to stockpile back-end-of-the-roster free agents and special teamers, so look for players in the second wave of free agency at this position unless they pursue an Alexander replacement early.
Josh Norman *
The Bills already added Norman, who was released by Washington, to compete for the CB2 job. This is another position Buffalo likes to stockpile, so don’t be surprised if they add another cornerback with starting experience but question marks to create a three-way race with Norman and Wallace. Johnson, the nickel cornerback, just received a boost in the coaching department as the team added a dedicated nickel coach.
The Bills have been quick to add veteran depth over the last several offseasons, but not early on in free agency. With Neal playing mostly in the slot as the Big Nickel, they’ll likely add a pair of safeties this offseason.
Corey Bojorquez (punter)
Reid Ferguson (long snapper)
Stephen Hauschka (kicker)
Kaare Vedvik (punter/kicker)
The Bills are going to have a Kaare/Corey battle at punter, it would seem. Vedvik bombed in his regular-season placekicking role and is presumably shifting back to punter. Hauschka rebounded for a decent 2019 season.
Unofficial depth chart
2020 Free Agency Depth Chart
|QB||Josh Allen||Matt Barkley||Davis Webb|
|RB||Devin Singletary||T.J. Yeldon||Taiwan Jones*||Christian Wade|
|WR1||Stefon Diggs*||Duke Williams||Ray-Ray McCloud|
|WR2||John Brown||Robert Foster||Nick Easley|
|SWR||Cole Beasley||Andre Roberts|
|TE1||Dawson Knox||Tyler Kroft||Jason Croom|
|TE2||Lee Smith||Tommy Sweeney||Nate Becker|
|LT||Dion Dawkins||Ryan Bates|
|LG||Quinton Spain||Spencer Long|
|RG||Jon Feliciano||Ike Boettger|
|RT||Ty Nsekhe||Cody Ford||Victor Salako|
|RE||Jerry Hughes||Quinton Jefferson*||Darryl Johnson, Jr.|
|NT||Star Lotulelei||Harrison Phillips||Vincent Taylor|
|DT||Ed Oliver||Vernon Butler|
|LE||Mario Addison*||Trent Murphy||Mike Love||Jonathan Woodard|
|SLB||A.J. Klein*||Tyler Matakevich*||Tyrel Dodson|
|MLB||Tremaine Edmunds||Corey Thompson|
|WLB||Matt Mliano||Vosean Joseph||Del'Shawn Phillips|
|CB||Tre'Davious White||Cam Lewis|
|FS||Jordan Poyer||Jaquan Johnson|
|SS||Micah Hyde||Dean Marlowe|
|NB||Taron Johnson||Siran Neal|
|CB||Josh Norman*||Levi Wallace|
|K||Stephen Hauschka||Kaare Vedvik|
|P||Corey Bojorquez||Kaare Vedvik|
|* - 2020 Free Agent|
With 56 players on the roster, Buffalo has room to add 36 more to the roster between free agency, the NFL Draft, and undrafted free agents. (They are allowed 91 players due to Christian Wade’s International Player Pathway exemption.) Upgrades, replacements, and a whole lot more depth is coming.