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PREVIEW: 2013 BUFFALO BILLS

May 24, 2013
INDIANA SPORTS PAGE



2013 BUFFALO BILLS PREVIEW

Head Coach: Doug Marrone, 1st Year

LAST SEASON: 6-10, third in AFC East Division

This will be another rebuilding season for the Buffalo Bills.  It seems like they are rebuilding every year.  Head Coach Doug Marrone will certainly be an uphill challenge.  The Bills roster doesn’t exactly look like an NFL roster. 

Buffalo has tried to win with QB’s like Ryan Fitzpatrick, Trent Edwards, J.P. Losman and Kelly Holcomb and it hasn’t worked.  So now they draft EJ Manuel with their first round selection, believing he will be the franchise signal caller.  Manuel looks like an NFL QB (6-5 245) but does he have what it takes to be the starter by September?  He will have to beat out Veterans Kevin Kolb and Tavaras Jackson before he is deemed the savior.  Right now one would think Kolb would give the Bills a chance to win early.

The Bills do have some weapons at the skills positions including WR Steve Johnson and RB’s C.J. Spiller and Fred Jackson.  All three have the ability to put up some huge numbers.   Buffalo is also hoping two of their draft picks will have an immediate impact; 2nd round selection WR Robert Woods and 3rd round WR-KR Marquise Goodwin.  Free agent Da’Rick Rogers could also be in the discussion.   The Bills will have a new offensive coordinator in Nathan Hackett.

The defense will also have a new coordinator in Mike Pettine.  Pettine comes over from the Jets where he helped establish a good New York defense.   Pettine will have some question marks in the defensive backfield but the front seven should be strong.  Alan Branch comes in from Seattle as a free agent to join NT Kyle Williams, Marcell Dareus and Mario Williams.  Buffalo lost DB George Wilson because of money but did resign Leodis McKelvin to a 4 year $17 million dollar deal.  Jarius Byrd returns as well. 

 

2012 IN REVIEW:

Total offense: 342.9 (19th)

Rushing: 138.6 (6th)

Passing: 204.3 (25th)

Total Defense: 362.9 (22nd)

Run Defense: 145.8 (31st)

Pass Defense: 217.1 (10th)

 

2013 BILLS SCHEDULE

Sept. 8 New England Patriots, 1 p.m.
Sept. 15 Carolina Panthers, 1 p.m.
Sept. 22 at New York Jets, 4:25 p.m.
Sept. 29 Baltimore Ravens, 1 p.m.
Oct. 3 at Cleveland Browns, 8:25 p.m.
Oct. 13 Cincinnati Bengals, 1 p.m.
Oct. 20 at Miami Dolphins, 1 p.m.
Oct. 27 at New Orleans Saints, 1 p.m.
Nov. 3 Kansas City Chiefs, 1 p.m.
Nov. 10 at Pittsburgh Steelers, 1 p.m.
Nov. 17 New York Jets, 1 p.m.
Nov. 24 BYE
Dec. 1 Atlanta Falcons, 4:05 p.m.
Dec. 8 at Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 1 p.m.
Dec. 15 at Jacksonville Jaguars, 1 p.m.
Dec. 22 Miami Dolphins, 1 p.m.
Dec. 29 at New England Patriots, 1 p.m.

2013 DRAFT:

Round 1: E.J. Manuel, QB, Florida State
Round 2: Robert Woods, WR, USC; Kiko Alonso, LB, Oregon
Round 3: Marquise Goodwin, WR, Texas
Round 4: Duke Williams, S, Nevada
Round 5: Jonathan Meeks, S, Clemson
Round 6: Dustin Hopkins, K, Florida State
Round 7: Chris Gragg, TE, Arkansas

Where they hit: General Manager Buddy Nix wasn’t lying when he said he liked the makeup of this year’s quarterback class more than most observers. Manuel was the first and only quarterback to go in the first round and the Bills were able to add two extra picks while moving down the draft board to pick him. Woods and Alonso both have good shots at being in the starting lineup from day one and Goodwin should be a factor out of the slot right away, which makes this a good job by the Bills of recognizing and addressing their biggest needs.

Where they missed: The offensive line need wasn’t great, although it would have been nice to see the Bills grab some depth there instead of doubling up at safety. Even with Jairus Byrd likely to stay away for a while because of the franchise tag, Williams would have been enough. When only three quarterbacks went in the first three rounds, you have to wonder if the Bills needed to pull the trigger on Manuel with the 16th overall pick. Another trade down would have been ideal from a value standpoint.

Impact rookies: The Bills have needed an outside receiver other than Stevie Johnson for a long time and Woods is the best option they’ve come up with yet. His arrival gives Manuel (or Kevin Kolb or Tarvaris Jackson) a much better chance at succeeding next season. Williams is a good bet to replace George Wilson at strong safety. Hopkins will get every opportunity to unseat Rian Lindell.

Long-term prospects: They all pretty much begin and end with Manuel. If he’s a hit, no one will care about whether the Bills took him higher than they needed to take him because Buffalo will finally have a post-Jim Kelly answer at quarterback. His varied skill set certainly opens the door to some creativity from new coach Doug Marrone. They hit their other needs pretty well, but the final word on this draft will have everything to do with how Manuel progresses.

 

Active Roster:

#

Name

Pos.

Ht.

Wt.

Age

Exp.

College

50

Alonso, Kiko

LB

6-4

242

22

R

Oregon

93

Anderson, Mark

DE

6-4

255

29

8

Alabama

58

Blatnick, Jamie

DE

6-3

253

23

1

Oklahoma State

53

Bradham, Nigel

LB

6-2

240

23

2

Florida State

90

Branch, Alan

DT

6-6

325

28

7

Michigan

33

Brooks, Ron

CB

5-11

188

24

2

LSU

74

Brown, Colin

C

6-7

326

27

2

Missouri

56

Brown, Kourtnei

LB

6-4

253

25

1

Clemson

35

Brown, Zach

RB

5-10

220

24

1

Pittsburgh

97

Bryant, Corbin

DT

6-4

300

25

1

Northwestern

29

Butler, Crezdon

CB

6-0

191

25

3

Clemson

92

Carrington, Alex

DT

6-5

301

25

4

Arkansas State

80

Caussin, Mike

TE

6-5

243

26

2

James Madison

84

Chandler, Scott

TE

6-7

260

27

7

Iowa

62

Chibane, Zack

G

6-5

298

22

R

Syracuse

20

Choice, Tashard

RB

5-10

210

28

5

Georgia Tech

76

Cross, Izaan

DE

6-4

280

22

R

Georgia Tech

46

Dangerfield, Jordan

DB

5-11

200

22

R

Towson

99

Dareus, Marcell

DT

6-3

331

23

3

Alabama

82

Dickerson, Dorin

WR

6-2

227

25

3

Pittsburgh

54

Dowtin, Marcus

LB

6-2

226

24

2

North Alabama

81

Easley, Marcus

WR

6-2

217

25

2

Connecticut

64

Eckerson, Hutch

OL

6-6

310

25

1

South Carolina

39

Edwards, Kip

CB

6-1

200

23

R

Missouri

18

Elliott, Kevin

WR

6-3

215

24

2

Florida A&M

47

Ellis, Dominique

DB

5-11

195

23

1

South Carolina State

42

Gaskins, Kendall

RB

6-1

238

22

R

Richmond

96

Gilbert, Jarron

DT

6-5

289

26

2

San Jose State

24

Gilmore, Stephon

DB

6-0

190

22

2

South Carolina

77

Glenn, Cordy

OT

6-5

343

23

2

Georgia

88

Goodwin, Marquise

WR

5-9

177

22

R

Texas

89

Gragg, Chris

TE

6-3

244

22

R

Arkansas

11

Graham, T.J.

WR

6-0

180

23

2

NC State

75

Hairston, Chris

LT

6-6

330

24

3

Clemson

44

Heath, T.J.

DB

6-0

188

25

2

Jacksonville State

15

Hogan, Chris

WR

6-1

215

24

1

Monmouth

5

Hopkins, Dustin

K

6-2

193

22

R

Florida State

55

Hughes, Jerry

LB

6-2

254

24

4

Texas Christian

22

Jackson, Fred

RB

6-1

216

32

7

Coe College

7

Jackson, Tarvaris

QB

6-2

225

30

8

Alabama State

13

Johnson, Stevie

WR

6-2

207

26

6

Kentucky

14

Kaufman, Brandon

WR

6-5

215

22

R

Eastern Washington

45

Kearney, Vernon

DB

6-2

185

24

R

Lane

4

Kolb, Kevin

QB

6-3

218

28

7

Houston

91

Lawson, Manny

LB

6-5

240

28

8

North Carolina State

9

Lindell, Rian

K

6-3

227

36

14

Washington State

59

Lloyd, Greg

LB

6-1

247

24

1

Connecticut

3

Manuel, EJ

QB

6-5

240

23

R

Florida State

21

McKelvin , Leodis

CB

5-10

185

27

6

Troy

36

Meeks, Jonathan

DB

6-1

210

23

R

Clemson

52

Moats, Arthur

OLB

6-2

250

25

4

James Madison

79

Pears, Erik

RT

6-8

316

30

8

Colorado State

49

Pough, Keith

OLB

6-3

236

23

R

Howard

6

Powell, Shawn

P

6-4

235

24

2

Florida State

37

Robey, Nickell

DB

5-8

165

21

R

USC

17

Rogers, Da'Rick

WR

6-3

208

21

R

Tennessee Tech

26

Rogers, Justin

CB

5-11

181

25

3

Richmond

41

Rolle, Jumal

DB

6-0

188

22

R

Catawba

69

Ross, Jay

DT

6-3

319

25

1

East Carolina

65

Sanborn, Garrison

LS

6-1

240

27

5

Florida State

72

Sanders, Zebrie

OL

6-6

318

23

1

Florida State

43

Scott, Bryan

LB

6-1

220

32

11

Penn State

73

Scott, Chris

OL

6-4

320

25

1

Tennessee

25

Searcy, Da'Norris

SS

5-11

216

24

3

North Carolina

87

Shuler, Mickey

TE

6-4

247

26

2

Penn State

30

Silva, Mana

DB

6-0

206

24

2

Hawaii

16

Smith, Brad

WR

6-2

213

29

8

Missouri

57

Smith, Brian

LB

6-3

240

24

1

Notre Dame

40

Smith, Drew

RB

6-2

225

23

R

Albany

85

Smith, Lee

TE

6-6

265

25

3

Marshall

61

Snow, David

OL

6-4

305

23

2

Texas

28

Spiller, C.J.

RB

5-11

200

25

4

Clemson

2

Stahovich, Brian

P

6-0

190

23

1

San Diego State

38

Summers, Frank

FB

5-9

248

27

1

UNLV

67

Tipoti, Aaron

DT

6-2

311

23

R

California

98

Troup, Torell

DT

6-3

327

24

3

Central Florida

8

Tuel, Jeff

QB

6-3

221

22

R

Washington State

63

Turnley, Ryan

C

6-6

320

23

R

Pittsburgh

60

Urbik, Kraig

G

6-5

324

27

5

Wisconsin

66

Welch, Thomas

OT

6-6

300

25

3

Vanderbilt

51

White, Chris

OLB

6-3

238

24

3

Mississippi State

23

Williams, Aaron

S

6-0

199

23

3

Texas

27

Williams, Duke

S

6-0

190

22

R

Nevada

68

Williams, Keith

G

6-5

330

25

1

Nebraska

95

Williams, Kyle

DT

6-1

303

29

8

LSU

94

Williams, Mario

DE

6-6

292

28

8

North Carolina State

70

Wood, Eric

C

6-4

310

27

5

Louisville

10

Woods, Robert

WR

6-1

190

21

R

USC

71

Young, Sam

OL

6-8

316

25

4

Notre Dame

 

Reserve/Injured

#

Name

Pos.

Ht.

Wt.

Age

Exp.

College

19

Norrell, Kevin

WR

5-10

200

22

R

Stony Brook

 

Reserve/Franchise Player

#

Name

Pos.

Ht.

Wt.

Age

Exp.

College

31

Byrd, Jairus

FS

5-10

203

26

5

Oregon


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