So, the Bills went into day one of the NFL Draft needing either a quarterback, left tackle, nose tackle or defensive end/outside linebacker. Of course, you would think the Bills would solve one of these problems today? However, at the end of the day, they still need all of the above.
Shocked. But really, should I be? I mean, we are talking about the Buffalo Bills. Why on earth would you spend your 9th pick in the draft on a running back? I’ve gone over the statistics ad nauseam! I’ve mentioned the history of finding ideal running backs in the later rounds. I’ve mentioned that if you are going to draft a running back that high, it better be when you’re a player away from the Super Bowl. Bottom line: Drafting a running back in the first round is a luxury that the Bills CANNOT afford!!!!!! (I could put another 20 exclamation points)!!!!
Look, I get the notion that you are suppose to pick the best player available. Hell, I’ve been preaching that concept the entire time leading up to the draft. However, the Bills don’t need a running back!! Did Fred Jackson have to break OJ Simpson’s single game record against the Colts to prove himself? I understand Chan Gailey wanting to find his dam waterbug running back. Hell, I wrote that in my GM column from two months ago. But not at the expense of the 9th pick!?
This marks the 5th time in the last 13 years that the Bills have drafted a running back within the first two rounds of the draft, which is now the most over that span in the NFL. It’s also the third first round pick they have used on a running back since 2003. Haven’t the Bills understood what happens when you draft a running back that high?
Lets flashback; I know Bills fans hate Willis McGahee and Marshawn Lynch. I get that. One guy is a punk and the other guy hated the city, the nightlife and the women. However, if you look at their numbers with the Bills, they aren’t bad. Actually, they are pretty good. Remember when McGahee burst onto the scene in 2004? Remember when Lynch was Beast mode? Hell, people were comparing him to Adrian Peterson during their rookie years. Both guys gained over 1,000 yards. Both guys were regarded as team MVP’s. Yes, they were jerks, but they played well when they were starting. What did their stellar seasons lead the Bills to? Mediocrity.
You’d think that the Bills would learn from history to at least try a different tactic. They have wasted 1st round picks on running backs and the end result is the same! Look, I don’t think CJ Spiller is going to be a bust. He looked great in college. Hopefully, Spiller doesn’t run over some fat chick on Chippewa street and really takes a liking to Dave & Busters. But I cannot stress the fact that you can find running backs/waterbugs in the later rounds. I can’t stop writing that Fred Jackson is more than an adequate starter.
I know you’re going to tell me that he’s a home run threat and can score whenever he gets the ball. Fine. However, you are going to need other players around that are going to help him get those home runs. Chris Johnson is a great back, but if he’s not playing behind an all-pro offensive line, he’s going David Ortiz without the steroids. Remember last year? We saw defensive players hovering around Buffalo ball carriers at 0.9 seconds after a hand-off. That’s an offensive line problem. I just don’t get it. I’m sorry. I really do want to get it.
Look, I know you think I’m just trying to be Jerry Sullivan Jr. I do want the Bills to succeed. I want to believe. I was looking forward to this draft. I wasn’t going to be critical if they drafted Clausen. I wasn’t going to bitch if they drafted Bulaga. I wasn’t going to complain about picking Dan Williams or Derrick Morgan. However, a running back? It doesn’t make sense. I just can’t stand here and not be upset with this choice. The Bills have 3 running backs who are capable of gaining a 1,000 yards. For goodness sakes, their running backs have almost scored as many touchdowns as their quarterbacks. Maybe they will run the dam wishbone offense.
I just don’t like the pick. The Bills needed to address other needs. They needed to get away from the luxury picks that Marv Levy and Tom Donahoe use to make. They needed to realize they are rebuilding. You don’t rebuild your football team by drafting a running back with the 9th pick. That’s why running backs hardly get drafted in the top 10. Instead, the Bills drafted as if they were a player away from contending. Hell, when was the last time an all-pro running back was on a Super Bowl team?
Like I said, I’m sure Spiller will be a fine addition. Running backs tend to be the most explosive players during their first years. However, we saw what a great rookie running back brings to the table for the Bills. And that’s nothing luxurious.
-Dam, what the hell happen to Jimmy Clausen? Maybe he shouldn’t have thrown his wide receiver under the bus when he was interviewed by Jon Gruden. Honestly, if the Bills somehow traded up and drafted Clausen, I would feel a hell of a lot better with Spiller as my first pick-
-The Tim Tebow watch is finally over! Thank god! I’m done hearing about this dude. I’m glad the Bills didn’t draft him. I just feel he’s nothing more than a project. No way he starts for the Broncos next year-
-Remember when Bill Parcells was with the Patriots and made the comment about wanting to shop for the groceries? Well, Chan Gailey is definitely hanging out at your local Wegmans. He said in February that he wanted a waterbug/running back off his grocery list. Well, he got that. By reports, the Bills were trying to trade back into the first round for Tebow, which would verify Gailey’s love for an athletic quarterback. Yes, Chan Gailey is doing some of the shopping at One Bills Drive. Hopefully, he doesn’t burn the kitchen down-
-Here’s another reason why the Bills may not have wanted to draft a quarterback with the 9th pick. Quarterbacks that are drafted in the top 10, tend to get more money than any other positional players. For example, Matt Leinart fell to the 10th pick in the 2006 Draft and signed a six-year, 51 million dollar contract. Last year, Aaron Maybin went to the Bills with the 11th pick and received a contract for 5-years, 25 million dollars. That’s a big difference to pay for someone that hasn’t taken a snap in the NFL. I don’t care what anyone says, money is always going to be on the table with the Bills-
-Winner of the 1st round: 49ers drafting Anthony Davis and Mike Iupati. They don’t have to worry about their offensive line for the next 10 years-
-Loser of the 1st round: Denver Broncos drafting Tim Tebow. Sorry, but this guy couldn’t take a snap under center at the Senior Bowl. As for his new throwing motion, it’s a hell of a lot easier to throw the football at the combine/high school field than having Shawne Merriman chase you down on Sundays. Honestly, I’m being harsh on Tebow because I’m so sick of hearing about him. See you in 2011, Timmy-
-Where do I see the Bills going tomorrow? Tough call. Ideally, maybe the Bills will try and get another second round pick and draft a LT and QB. I wouldn’t mind seeing Jimmy Clausen and Bruce Campbell playing here. Last year, the Bills had to give up their 3rd and 4th round picks to get back into the 2nd round to select Andy Levitre (51st pick from Dallas). How about trading those picks + Marshawn Lynch for the Vikings 34th selection. Use that pick to draft Clausen and then select the best available tackle at 41. Now, that’s just being me. Oh, wait. The Vikings will probably draft Clausen and they don’t need a running back. That’s it, I give up.
If my Monty Hall approach doesn’t work, I can see the Bills going with Bruce Campbell, Charles Brown or Colt McCoy in the 2nd round. Gun to my head; I’m going Charles Brown with the 41st pick (As I don’t think McCoy will be there). As for the third round, best available player-