A critical offseason looms for the Bills who have 10 picks in the coming draft and the third-most salary cap space available in the league. With a top-5 defense in place, Buffalo has some patches to fill there but the priority is building the offense around quarterback Josh Allen. While free agency should allow Buffalo to fill needs, particularly on the offensive line, the draft will feature plenty of opportunities for the Bills to infuse the roster with even more young talent.
In order to make these selections, I fired up The Draft Network’s Mock Draft Machine, which releases to the public on February 25th. You can draft for one team, two teams, heck, you can draft for all 32 teams if you’d like. Make sure to keep your eye out for the launch!
Round 1, Pick No.9: Jawaan Taylor, OT, Florida
This is becoming a trendy pick for the Bills, but it makes a lot of sense. Given the depth of the wide receiver class, Buffalo has an opportunity to claim one of the best offensive tackle prospects in the class and make sure Josh Allen is protected while also providing much-needed power in the run game. Taylor is a massive man who carries his weight well while offering outstanding mobility for his size.
Round 2, Pick No. 40: JJ Arcega-Whiteside, WR, Stanford
A technically refined route runner who dominates at the catch point, Arcega-Whiteside can be the x-receiver Buffalo so desperately needs. His body control is exceptional and the game slows down for him at the catch point. He profiles as a short to intermediate threat for the Bills who also gets his work done as a blocker. He can help keep the chains moving while presenting a nightmare for opponents to defend in the redzone.
Round 3, Pick No. 75: Isaac Nauta, TE, Georgia
Nauta is a well-rounded tight end with outstanding blocking ability but also profiles as a dynamic receiving threat. Georgia featured a run-heavy offense while sprinkling in the passing game to numerous targets, but even within that context there were times that Nauta took over drives for the Bulldogs. He gets pushed down the board a bit in an outstanding tight end class and presents great value as a starting caliber prospect in round three.
Round 4, Pick No. 106: Beau Benzschawel, IOL, Wisconsin
Benzshawel played and started 49 consecutive games (FORTY-NINE!) for the Badgers, primarily at guard but also played at tackle earlier in his career. He capped his standout career with Consensus All-American Honors as a senior. Coming from the Wisconsin offensive line pedigree, Benzshawel should immediately provide quality depth and compete to start.
Round 4, Pick No. 125: Daniel Wise, DT, Kansas
Lost on a bad Kansas football team, Wise lives in the backfield and profiles as the wrecking-ball interior penetrator that the Buffalo defense desperately needs. He averaged over 10 tackles for loss per season for his Jayhawk career, including 28 TFLs and 10 sacks across his final two years. He was unblockable at the East-West Shrine Game.
Round 5, Pick No. 137: Terry McLaurin, WR, Ohio State
McLaurin was underused at Ohio State but still managed to catch 11 touchdown passes while averaging 20 yards per reception as a senior. While his vertical receiving skill set is exciting, McLaurin stole the show at the Senior Bowl with his route-running prowess to all levels of the field. Renown for his character and work ethic, McLaurin was a special teams ace for the Buckeyes and would be the perfect receiver for Buffalo to add on Day 3.
Round 5, Pick No. 148: Blace Brown, CB, Troy
The Bills need depth and special teams ability at corner and Brown would be a great Day 3 selection that offers considerable upside. He is a lengthy and physical corner that tackles well and had excellent ball production in college. I can see Brown developing into a quality gunner on punt team while challenging the depth of the roster at cornerback.
Round 6, Pick No. 168: Darwin Thompson, RB, Utah State
Thompson profiles as a scatback with an exciting receiving skill set. He could fill the role of third down back and provide Buffalo with a receiving threat for Josh Allen out of the backfield. He is highly competitive with the ball in his hands and features outstanding contact balance. He has the quickness and physical gifts to create yards for himself.
Round 7, Pick No. 203: Ben Banogu, EDGE, TCU
In two seasons at TCU, Banogu racked up an impressive 34.5 tackles for loss, 17 sacks and 5 forced fumbles. He features an impressive repertoire of pass rush moves and good athletic ability. With that said, he is a tightly wound edge rusher which pushes him way down the board, but is the type of talent work investing in later in the draft. Buffalo needs an infusion of youth at edge rusher.
Round 7, Pick No. 206: Qadree Ollison, RB, Pittsburgh
Ollison stared his career with a standout freshman season that included over 1100 yards and 11 TDs but faded in 2016 and 2017. He’s re-established himself as a senior and rushed for 1134 yards and 10 TDs, showcasing an exciting blend of size, power, vision and acceleration. Combined with the efforts of fellow senior backfield mate Darrin Hall, Pitt rode the tandem to an ACC Coastal Division Championship.
*REMINDER*: You can play general manager for your favorite team too when Mock Draft Machine releases to the public on February 25th!