Bills Today: Former GM on free agent QBs: It's certainly a good opportunity

Posted Mar 9, 2018

Here's the Bills news of note for March 9th.

Here’s the Bills news of note for Mar. 9th.

1 - Former GM on free agent QBs: It’s certainly a good opportunity
On March 14, at 4 pm, the NFL free agency period will officially begin. Undeniably, the talk throughout the league at that time will be on the quarterbacks who become available.

Former Tampa Bay Buccaneers general manager, Mark Dominik, hasn’t seen anything like it in his 20-plus years of front office and scouting experience. Dominik joined the John Murphy Show on Thursday and discussed the rarity with this year’s free agent QBs.

“Yeah, I think it’s very unique. When Kirk Cousins can get to the market, and however so he got there, very rare on its own right,” said Dominik. “Then certainly what’s going on in Minnesota with all three starters coming out of there and becoming free agents. A.J. McCarron being granted to free agency, which I agreed with the ruling.

“Then you have the draft picks. Definitely an intriguing class of four-plus, because I think there’s still some quarterbacks that’re trying to make a name for themselves that’re going to keep climbing up the draft board. It is interesting. It’s certainly a good opportunity.”

The Bills are certainly one team who could attack this year’s draft, or the intriguing free agency class for a QB. With five picks (21,22,53,56,96) in the top 100, the team has plenty of draft capital to make a move. In addition, Buffalo should enter free agency on Wednesday with around $22 million in cap room.

Considering those circumstances, Dominik feels this is the approach Buffalo should take.

“Clearly, they’re not in on the Kirk Cousins train, which tells me some things about what their plan is. I haven’t heard Kirk Cousins name and I’m pretty sure he’s not one of those final four,” he said. “Could they be in on A.J. McCarron or [Mike] Glennon? Sure. I think they could be. I mean, that would make some sense to me.

"So, they kind of back up their starter and can still be aggressive in the draft and say, ‘I like this guy.’ What’s the worst that can happen to Buffalo? You have three good quarterbacks? That’s not a bad problem. You have one guy that you can take along and kind of ascend as he needs to go. While a A.J. McCarron and obviously Tyrod [Taylor] fight it out to see who’s the starter. I think that’s an approach that would make some sense to me in Buffalo.”

2 - Defense dominates for Buffalo in McShay’s mock draft 3.0
Assuming the Bills hold onto the 21st and 22nd overall pick, ESPN’s draft expert Todd McShay thinks the team could add two defensive players in the first round. These selections would bring needed depth to the defensive front and secondary.

In McShay’s 2018 NFL Mock Draft 3.0, he has the Bills adding defensive lineman Taven Bryan and cornerback Jaire Alexander. Both Alexander and Bryan played three seasons (2015-2017) in the college ranks.

Bryan, the projected 21st pick, played his college career at the University of Florida. In 30 games, he tallied 62 tackles, 10.5 tackles for a loss, over five sacks, three fumble recoveries, one forced fumble, and one interception.

Here’s what McShay had to say about the 6-5, 293-pound DL.

I’ll go defense here. Buffalo needs help along the defensive line after trading DT Marcell Dareus last season, and Bryan would be a good fit. Bryan is an explosive three-technique whose best football is still ahead of him. His workout confirmed what I saw on tape.

After addressing the D-Line, Alexander is next to come off the board with the No. 22 pick. He had an impressive three-year career at CB for Louisville, and also served as a punt returner for the Cardinals.

In 29 games, Alexander totaled 77 tackles, 15 passes defended, seven interceptions, one FF, and one FR. In the return game, he took back 43 punts for 424 yards, averaging just under 10 yards per return. Alexander also had one punt return TD in his college career.

McShay had this to say about Alexander and pairing him with Vontae Davis and Tre’Davious White in the back end.

I think they go defense again. Secondary help is needed outside of Tre’Davious White and recently signed Vontae Davis. Alexander missed half the season, but he’s a big-time cover corner. His combine workout - highlighted by a 4.38 40 - - turned some heads.

3 - The top Bill who never staked his claim in the Hall of Fame?
There’s a long list of Buffalo Bills players who’ve been named to the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Jim Kelly, Bruce Smith, Thurman Thomas, the list goes on. But who’s the best player to suit up for the Bills who isn’t in Canton, Ohio? listed each team’s best all-time non-Hall of Fame player. For the Bills, they believe running back Joe Cribbs was the team’s best player not inducted into the Hall.

Here’s Adam Rank’s thoughts on Cribbs not being a HOF inductee.

Cribbs was the perfect bridge from O.J. Simpson to Thurman Thomas. Might have had a shot at the Hall if he didn’t jump to the USFL in the mid-1980s.

Cribbs had an eight-year career (1980-1988) in the NFL, mostly with the Bills. He spent five years in Buffalo, two years in San Francisco, and his final season with both Indianapolis and Miami. The former RB was second-round draft pick by the Bills in 1980.

In 64 games (58 starts) with the Bills, he had 1,082 carries, 4,445 yards, and 21 touchdowns. He averaged just over four yards per carry and 69.5 yards per game.

Cribbs contributed highly through the air as well. He recorded 180 receptions for 1,783 yards and 15 TDs while with Buffalo.

Cribbs earned Pro Bowl honors three times while in the league. All three years (1980,81,83) he was selected was as a member of the Buffalo Bills.