1 – PFF: Hughes one of best pass-rushers in NFL
Among all edge defenders this past season, Jerry Hughes was the best. Hughes, an arguable snub from the Pro Bowl this season, finished ahead of former NFL defensive player of the year Khalil Mack and Chiefs’ Pro Bowler Dee Ford.
Hughes finished with a 19.7 percent pressure rate. Hughes had his lowest tackle output in his Bills career but finished with more quarterback hits than he’s had since 2014. Hughes’ final stat line included 37 tackles, three forced fumbles, seven sacks, 13 tackles for a loss and 18 quarterback hits.
Hughes recorded 74 total pressures on 375 pass-rush snaps to give him the best pass-rush productivity rating among all qualifying edge defenders in the NFL, according to Pro Football Focus. Hughes placed at No. 44 on the PFF Top-101 players’ list.
2 - ESPN: Bills could trade down in draft
ESPN released their bold offseason predictions for all 32 teams. The network believes the possibility exists for the Bills to trade down from the ninth pick and attempt to make two first-round draft selections.
At No. 9, Buffalo could be an enticing trade partner for a team seeking a quarterback or looking to nab a top-tier defensive lineman who is slipping down the board. If the Bills decide to pass up the best player available, their No. 9 selection (worth 1,350 points) is worth roughly the same as the Raiders' Nos. 24 and 27 picks (1,420) on the traditional trade-value chart. General manager Brandon Beane said at the Senior Bowl the Bills don't need to be in the top 10, so expect Buffalo to discuss trading down.
In Todd McShay’s mock draft the Raiders would have selected Ole Miss wide receiver A.J. Brown and running back Josh Jacobs from Alabama. While the Bills don’t have the same needs as Oakland, Buffalo could see themselves with an interest in a player like Brown as both teams are in need of help at the receiver position.
3 – Plenty of former Bills in the AAF
The brand-new Alliance of American Football kicked off this past week for their inaugural 10-week season. Former Buffalo Bills executives, coaches and players are involved in the upstart of the new league.
Highlighting the group of former Bills are Bill Polian and Pete Metzelaars. Polian, the former pro personnel director and general manager, is the co-founder of the AAF. Polian spent eight years with the Bills and now hopes to give players an opportunity to show they belong in the NFL. Metzelaars, a Bills tight end from 1985-94, is the offensive line coach of the Atlanta Legends. Metzelaars had previous stints coaching in the NFL with the Colts, Bills and the Chargers, coaching their tight ends.
There are 33 former Bills involved with AAF teams. Punter Colton Schmidt is looking to get back into the NFL after spending time with Buffalo this season along with Ryan Davis who recorded 26 total tackles, three sacks and one forced fumble in his one season with the Bills.
Bill Polian, Pete Metzelaars, Colton Schmidt, Ryan Davis, Keith Towbridge, Cyril Richardson, Ted Cottrell, Matt Simms, T.J. Barnes, Marquis Lucas, Donnie Henderson, Dennis Thurman, Bradley Sylve, Josh Woodrum, Sterling Moore, Carl Bradford, Ron Brooks, Austin Rehkow, Tenny Palepoi, A.J. Tarpley, Charles James II, Dustin Vaughan, Quan Bray, Kaelin Clay, Mo Porter, Rickey Hatley, Evan Rodriguez, Rashad Ross, Chris Martin, Pepper Johnson, David Lee, Rory Anderson, Gerald Christian are all the former Bills expected to make an appearance this season.