Buddy Nix sure doesn’t mince words and this weekend’s draft is a testament to that. Nix and the Buffalo Bills front office set out to find players that could help this franchise take that next step into playoff contention. After evaluating the nine players they selected it seems like they’ve accomplished that feat. Going into the draft the Bills’ most pressing areas of need were offensive tackle, wide receiver, cornerback and linebacker. By 8:00 PM Saturday the Bills selected two offensive tackles, two linebackers, two corners, and one receiver (along with a guard/center and a kicker). The Bills found value with just about every pick and found talent and depth in their biggest areas of need. After some careful analysis this is what I think I think of the Bills 2012 draft class.
Best Pick: Stephon Gilmore (1st Round Pick, 10th Overall)
Taking into consideration the perceived value of landing players like Cordy Glenn and Zebrie Sanders in the spots they did, Gilmore still gets the nod as the team’s best pick in the draft. Gilmore will likely start from day 1 opposite of Aaron Williams and instantly becomes the most talented cornerback on the roster. He’s drawn comparisons to a mixture between Antoine Winfield for his physical prowess and Nnamdi Asomugha for his coverage abilities. He started 40 consecutive games in the best conference in college football and locked down opposing number one receivers for past three seasons. The Bills’ secondary has been adequate for years but they now have a legitimate shut-down corner prospect that should pair nicely with Williams to form a solid 1-2 duo.
Best Value: Cordy Glenn (2nd Round Pick, 41st Overall)
I’m really not trying to go in order here and I honestly could’ve put Sanders’s name in this spot as well but I had Glenn projected as my number two rated offensive tackle behind Matt Kalil and number 14 overall on my big board (yes I’m that big of a loser that I had a big board). Glenn should come in immediately and push Chris Hairston for the starting left tackle job out of camp. He’ll likely have some growing pains adjusting to speed rushers in the NFL but the guy is an unbelievable athlete for his size. “Draft experts”, and I use that term very loosely, like Mel Kiper project him as a guard or right tackle in the NFL and can’t see him on the blind side. Kiper and his butt buddy Todd McShay also had Aaron “Mayhem” Maybin pinned as the second-coming of Dwight Freeny so you can guess how much I value their opinions. Glenn is massive and if he’s able to drop 10-15 pounds and get down to the 330-335 lbs range he shouldn’t have any problem making the leap to left tackle in the NFL.