By Budd Bailey
Joe DeLamielleure of the Bills
Taken in Round 1 in 1973
The next pick: The Chiefs took tight end Gary Butler out of Rice. He played every other year – 1973, 1975 and 1977 – and caught a total of 25 passes in his career.
Other picks in the round: John Hannah was the most successful choice of the rest of the first round. He’s in the Hall of Fame and probably is in the argument as the greatest offensive lineman in history. Ray Guy (No. 23 to Oakland) is the only punter to be taken in the first round. At least he’s a Hall of Fame punter too. Bert Jones (No. 2 to Baltimore) was a fine quarterback until injuries reduced him to part-time status. John Matuszak (No. 1 to Houston) was one of the great characters in football in the 1970s. Joe Ehrmann (No. 10 to Baltimore) was a Buffalo native who played at Syracuse. Dave Butz (No. 5 to St. Louis) played 216 games at defensive tackle.
The details: When Lou Saban searched for new blockers for O.J. Simpson, he couldn’t have found a better one this this guard. DeLamielleure walked right into the starting lineup in 1973, and spent the rest of the 1970s as a standout for Buffalo. He played in six straight Pro Bowls. Joe D. then was traded to the Browns, where he stayed for four years, before finishing his career back in Buffalo in 1985.
Other 26s: Henry Jones was a great fit at safety for the Bills in the 1990s, leading the league in interceptions in 1992. Greg Bell had a couple of good seasons for the Bills at running back, and was traded to the Rams as part of the Cornelius Bennett deal. Erik Flowers and John McCargo were major disappointments for the Bills on the defensive line. Tyler Ennis spent seven seasons with the Sabres in the 2010s, peaking in 2010-11 with 49 points. The Sabres had some high hopes for defenseman Greg Brown in the late 1980s, but he never could win a regular job in the NHL.
(Follow Budd on Twitter @WDX2BB)