By Budd Bailey, Buffalo Sports Page Columnist

No. 78 – Ben Williams of the Bills

Taken in Round 3 in 1976

Other picks in the round: The best choice was Jackie Slater, who went to the Rams. The offensive tackle had a Hall of Fame career. Many other veterans came out of the round, including Reggie Williams of the Bengals, Gary Barbaro of the Chiefs, and Greg Buttle of the Chiefs.

The details: Williams is remembered at the University of Mississippi as the first African American to play football there.  He arrived in Buffalo in 1976 – just in time to see the team collapse, even though it wasn’t his fault. Ben stayed for 10 years, and remained a very good player throughout that span.

Other 78s: Marquise Goodwin was a world-class long jumper when he came to the Bills in 2013. His speed wasn’t helpful when he was on the sidelines with injuries, which was his biggest problem in his four years in Buffalo. Jamie Mueller came out of Benedictine in 1987 to play four seasons at running back in Buffalo.

(Follow Budd on Twitter @WDX2BB)

Budd Bailey

Budd Bailey has been involved in almost every aspect of the local sports scene for the last 40 years. He worked for WEBR Radio, the Buffalo Sabres' public relations department and The Buffalo News during that time. In that time he covered virtually every aspect of the area's sports world, from high schools to the Bills and Sabres and everything in between. Along the way, Budd served as a play-by-play announcer for the Bisons, an analyst for the Stallions, and a talk-show host. He won the National Lacrosse League's Tom Borrelli Award as the media personality of the year in 2011, and was a finalist for that same award in 2017. Budd's seventh and eighth books, one on the Transcontinental Railroad and the other about Ichiro Suzuki, are scheduled to be released in the fall.

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