WGR550 reporter Sal Capaccio is reporting that Temple cornerback Nate Hairston was in Buffalo Wednesday night for a pre-draft visit with the Buffalo Bills. This marks the first report of up to 30 visitors that the team is allowed to host before the 2017 NFL Draft.
Traditionally, pre-draft visitors have been a very strong way to understand Buffalo’s intentions with Doug Whaley (and previously, Buddy Nix) at the helm. Until the 2016 season, the team had a six-year streak going of making their first pick of the year on a player who had visited One Bills Drive. Last year the Bills added four pre-draft visitors to their roster, and a fifth, Kevon Seymour, was a teammate of a visitor and played a position that the Bills had already scouted with pre-draft visits.
The Bills have had Hairston on their radar at least since the beginning of the offseason. He privately met with the team during practices at the East-West Shrine Game in January. Hairston converted from wide receiver to cornerback during his college career, but his recent experience in zone coverage would appeal to head coach Sean McDermott. It also probably helps that Hairston went to school in the place where McDermott’s career took off, somewhere he likely has local ties.
Hairston, who is considered a day three pick, isn’t the only Owl the Bills could be targeting with this visit. Linebacker Haason Reddick went from walk-on to All-AAC, and has received Jamie Collins comparisons on his way to first-round discussion. Offensive guard Dion Dawkins is another standout player from Temple who could be on Buffalo’s radar.
As these reports trickle in over the next several weeks, we will continue to record them for reference as we narrow down Buffalo’s draft choices.