Mock Draft Watch 7.0

Posted Apr 6, 2014

The seventh edition of Mock Draft Watch – a rundown of the latest mock drafts compiled by via local and national NFL reporters.

April 3 – (Insider), Mel Kiper
No. 9 – T Taylor Lewan, Michigan
No. 41 – TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Washington
No. 73 –  WR Brandon Coleman, Rutgers
Top needs: RT, WR, S, TE
Analysis: I'd like to find a good matchup threat in the passing game for my young quarterback. But keeping him healthy is the first concern, and getting Lewan -- who easily could have been a top-two pick last season in a thinner draft -- at No. 9 is a good value at a position of need. The draft is deep with pass-catchers, and I take advantage of that in Round 2, taking Seferian-Jenkins even ahead of Jace Amaro. Scott Chandler is a pretty good player, but "ASJ" is at another level athletically, and his presence could also allow Buffalo to involve some two-tight end looks. I'm taking a shot on a big target in Round 3. At 6-foot-6, 225 pounds, Coleman provides great length and the ability to make plays over defenders. I also see safety as a need, but building around EJ Manuel wins out here based on how the board played out.

April 2 – WGR 550, Joe Buscaglia
No. 9 – WR Mike Evans, Texas A&M
With both offensive tackles off the board, the Buffalo Bills draft a player that will immediately help the progress of EJ Manuel. The Bills' second-year player is in desperate need of a safety blanket type of player, and the "I'll go anywhere and get the ball" type of playing style in Evans' 6-foot-5 frame is a welcomed addition. This is a dynamite pick for the Bills, and will add to one of their core weaknesses from 2013... offensive explosiveness.

No. 41 – T Antonio Richardson, Tennessee
This pick came down to two players: Antonio "Tiny" Richardson and Notre Dame tight end Troy Niklas. The Bills have a big need at right tackle and could use a tight end with long-term potential. However, looking at the type of player Richardson is, it screams of a Doug Whaley and Doug Marrone endorsed pick. His strength is pushing the pile in run blocking, what the Bills want their bread and butter to be offensively. At 6-foot-6, 336-pounds and with 35-inch arms, he fits the description of the "bigger" style of offensive lineman Marrone said he's looking for. He's not a perfect prospect -- and certainly not cut out for left tackle --- but on the right side, he projects quite well.

April 2 – The Big Lead, Jason McIntyre
No. 9 – T Taylor Lewan, Michigan
Doesn’t appear his off-the-field situation will hinder his status. Bills have big needs at safety and on the OL. Coach Doug Marrone is a lifelong offensive guy and will get Mike Evans if he’s still on the board here. You give EJ Manuel a stud lineman to block for Spiller/Jackson and pass protect for a fleet-footed group of WRs and the Bills could be explosive.

April 1 – Yahoo Sports, Shaun King
No. 9 – T Jake Matthews, Texas A&M
Needs: TE, RT
The pick: Jake Matthews (OT, Texas A&M) – With EJ Manuel battling injuries as a rookie, keeping their QB safe is a top priority in Buffalo. Matthews is probably the safest pick in the entire draft.

April 1 –, Bryan Fischer
No. 9 – T Zack Martin, Notre Dame
Bills would love if Robinson fell to them, but Martin would also be an instant upgrade for their O-line.

April 1 –, Doug Farrar
No. 9 – LB Khalil Mack, Buffalo
Kiko Alonso proved to be a superstar as a rookie, but the Bills would love to move him outside, making their front seven more diverse. Mack would absolutely allow them to do so as he possesses the ability to line up just about everywhere, including at edge rusher, with his pass-rush skills.

April 1 – Bleacher Report, Dan Hope
No. 9 – WR Mike Evans, Texas A&M
The Buffalo Bills are clearly still in the market for talent at wide receiver. The team recently hosted Kenny Britt for a visit prior to his signing with the St. Louis Rams, and has also reportedly been interested in recently released wideout DeSean Jackson, according toNFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.

The wide receiver on the market who would actually be the best fit for what Buffalo needs, however, is Texas A&M’s Mike Evans. With an outstanding combination of size (6-5, 231 lbs), body control and athleticism, Evans would give the Bills the vertical threat they lack in their passing offense.

The Buffalo Bills should be looking to help out second-year quarterback EJ Manuel by adding as much talent around him as possible. There might not be any player in this year’s draft who could help Manuel more than Evans, who routinely wins jump balls in the air and has a wide catch radius that make up for some of Manuel’s inconsistencies with accuracy.

Auburn offensive tackle Greg Robinson could also be tough for the Bills to pass up at this selection, but Evans is a seemingly ideal fit who Buffalo should not hesitate to select with the No. 9 overall pick.

March 31 – CBS Sports, Dane Brugler
No. 9 – TE Eric Ebron, UNC
The Bills need to add a big, physical presence in the receiving game, whether at wide receiver or tight end. Ebron is a freak athlete who will instantly help the Bills offense and second-year quarterback EJ Manuel.

March 31 – CBS Sports, Rob Rang
No. 9 – T Taylor Lewan, Michigan
In head coach Doug Marrone's first season at the helm, he showed off his preference for a ball-control attack, making controlling the line of scrimmage paramount to success. Few are better there than Lewan, who starred for four seasons at left tackle with the Wolverines but may be even better suited to the right side because of his length and aggression.

March 31 – SB Nation, Matthew Fairburn
No. 9 – WR Mike Evans, Texas A&M
Despite a fair amount of depth at wide receiver, the Buffalo Bills lack a player who has the ability to be a true No. 1. Mike Evans would fix that problem. He dominates at the catch point and has enough speed to be a threat. If E.J. Manuel is going to make the jump in year two, having weapons like Evans wouldn't hurt.

No. 41 – T Antonio Richardson, Tennessee
After adding a weapon to the passing game in round one, the Bills get some value at offensive tackle in round two. Antonio Richardson didn't have a great year in Tennessee, but he still has room to develop and could play right tackle for the Bills.

March 28 – CBS Sports, Pat Kirwan
No. 9 – T Taylor Lewan, Michigan
It's hard to find 6-foot-8 tackles who have athletic ability, and Doug Marone's a background is the offensive line. Lewan will help EJ Manuel and the running game.

March 27 – National Football Post, Greg Gabriel and Eric Galko
No. 9 – T Taylor Lewan, Michigan
The Bills have needs at WR, TE, and safety but Lewan is too good to pass up. He can start right away at right tackle. This could be a trade down slot.

March 26 – CBS Sports, Pete Prisco
No. 9 – T Jake Matthews, Texas A&M
He's too good a player to fall out of the top 10.

March 26 – Sports on Earth, Mike Tanier, Dan Pompei and Russ Lande
Mike Tanier:  No. 9 – LB Anthony Barr, UCLA
It is hard to tell just what the Bills are up to, particularly on defense. Is Jim Schwartz planning to assemble a Lions-style front four, or build on Mike Pettine's success with a hybrid scheme? No matter what Schwartz has planned, he can do better at outside linebacker than Manny Lawson. Barr has the size Schwartz prefers at linebacker, he flashed some 4.5 speed at his pro day and the game film shows all-purpose chops: He can play in space, rush the passer and do enough to get by in coverage. And if Schwartz decides he wants to use more of a 3-4 look, Barr and Mario Williams provide a pretty credible pair of edge rushers

Dan Pompei:  No. 9 – WR Sammy Watkins, Clemson
If one of the top three OTs slip, the Bills could go that route. Eric Ebron could be tempting. But Watkins would be great value at No. 9, and the Bills sure could use someone to make big plays on offense

Russ Lande:  No. 9 – TE Eric Ebron, UNC
With Robert Woods, Marquise Goodwin and Stevie Johnson, the Bills have three young receivers for EJ Manuel to throw to, but Eric Ebron would give him the security blanket all young quarterbacks need. In addition, Ebron has the talent to be a game-changing offensive weapon.

March 25 –, Bucky Brooks
No. 9 – TE Eric Ebron, UNC
Doug Marrone is "all-in" on EJ Manuel, so adding weapons to the passing game is a priority. Texas A&M WR Mike Evans would fit the bill, but the Bills could opt for a big, athletic tight end to exploit voids in the middle of the field. 

March 25 –, Chris Burke
No. 9 – T Jake Matthews, Texas A&M
Robinson to Cleveland and Matthews to Buffalo changed the look of this mock. Neither team would object. Matthews is arguably a top-five talent landing at No. 9, and he would allow the Bills to get RT Erik Pears out of the starting lineup. Miami’s in even worse shape up front, though Branden Albert helped exponentially. A slight slide from Matthews would have several teams itching for a move.

March 24 – SB Nation, Matthew Fairburn
No. 4 (trade via Cleveland) – T Greg Robinson, Auburn

*The Browns receive a first and third round pick in 2014 and a third-round pick in 2015 from the Bills for the No. 4 pick.

Here's our second trade of the top five. The Browns already have plenty of picks in this draft but are able to pick up a few more so that the Buffalo Bills can move up and take advantage of some value at offensive tackle. Greg Robinson is one of the top prospects in this class and would immediately fill Buffalo's need at right tackle. If he improves in pass protection, Robinson could end up being the best NFL offensive tackle from this draft class.

March 20 –, Daniel Jeremiah
No. 9 – WR Mike Evans, Texas A&M
Evans' combination of size, speed and ball skills would fit nicely in Doug Marrone's offense.

March 20 – CBS Sports, Pat Kirwan
No. 9 – LB Khalil Mack, Buffalo
The local kid who wanted to stay home for college gets to stay home for pro football. The Bills could move Mario Williams over to the left side on passing downs and plug Mack in on the right side. Now they should be able to get after Tom Brady.

March 19 – WGR 550, Joe Buscaglia
No. 9 – T Jake Matthews, Texas A&M
With both Watkins and Evans off the board, this pick becomes easy for the Bills. Jake Matthews will start at right tackle immediately and give the Bills flexibility in case Cordy Glenn starts to struggle on the left side, or, in two years if they cannot get the left tackle under a long-term contract. It’s a safe pick, and some (including your author) would argue for the Bills to go after North Carolina’s Eric Ebron if this were how the first eight picks shakes out. However, head coach Doug Marrone is putting a premium on being able to run the ball, and they’ll likely look at this as a chance to solidify the offensive line from left to right. That, combined with the wide receiver depth in 2014, is sound enough logic for the decision makers at One Bills Drive.

No. 41 – WR Donte Moncreif, Mississippi
The Bills are in need of a playmaker for their offense, specifically to help EJ Manuel become the player they want him to be. While he isn’t a Sammy Watkins or a Mike Evans, Donte Moncrief possesses a lot more to his game than some gave him credit for early on in the draft process. He’s a smooth wideout with sneaky speed that can get behind a defense in a hurry. The size is there, measuring in over 6-foot-2, with a good weight of 220-pounds. At Ole Miss the quarterbacking wasn’t great, but Moncrief still found the way to make plays. He’s a viable candidate at 41 if the Bills elect to go with the offensive line in the first round.

March 18 – Bleacher Report, Micheal Schottey
No. 9 – T Jake Matthews, Texas A&M
The Buffalo Bills have lost as much as they've brought in this free-agency period, but the overarching theme of the team's rebuilding still needs to be the success of EJ Manuel at quarterback and helping the run game contribute toward that end.

Offensive tackle isn't the biggest need on the Bills' board, but Jake Matthews is (by far) the best player available whom they could slot in immediately (likely at left tackle, moving Cordy Glenn to the right).