by Bob Gaughan, Buffalo Sports Page

The NFL Draft begins on Thursday, with the Bills picking 9th in the first round. They have 10 picks total, a good chance to upgrade the roster.  What will they do? What positions will they focus on?  Bob Gaughan takes a stab at guessing with his 2019 Buffalo Bills Seven Round Mock Draft.

Round One

Montez Sweat Edge Mississippi State
To me Sweat is the best natural pass rusher in the draft. At nine I want to get an elite player. I was considering Hockenson and Oliver as well. Point is the Bills filled a ton of holes in free agency. Now I want an elite player at nine. I think Sweat is that guy. It’s been noted in the past that Jerry Hughes is in the final year of his contract. Hughes will be 32 next year. I can’t see the Bills signing him to a long term deal. Shaq Lawson is in the final year as well. Lawson lacks that first step quickness, he’s fine against the run but I could see the Bills letting him walk too. I can’t count on Trent Murphy to stay healthy. Sweat is long lean has the great bend around the edge. I think he contributes right from the start.

Round 2

Jerry Tillery DT Notre Dame
In every mock draft I see one of the DT’s falling into round two. The disagreement comes with which one will fall. I think it’s Tillery. The reason is because he is inconsistent at times. I still like him because he can be dominant as well. Look at the Stanford game when he had four sacks. I like his upside and his ability to rush from the inside. This is the modern way to get pressure, right up the gut. The Bills need a guy like this since Kyle Williams retired. Tillery can provide that element. This is the reason that many people pick Ed Oliver for the Bills in round one. I think I can get it in round two with Tillery.

Round 3

Micheal Dieter OL Wisconsin
This is a typical Bills pick. Dieter can play all over the line. I love his versatility. He can play tackle, guard or center. The Bills love players like this. I’m still a little worried about Ty Nsekhe at RT. The Bills have done a ton on the offensive line in free agency but I want one more guy to make sure. I go big, big, big with the first three picks in the draft and strengthen the Bills offensive and defensive lines.

Round 4

Kahale Warring TE San Diego State
An all around athlete that played water polo, swimming, cross country, soccer, tennis and basketball before turning to football. He’s a former walk-on that worked his way up on the depth chart. I think he can become a match-up nightmare in the middle of the field. San Diego State loved to run the ball so he has the experience blocking. He’s a little of a project because of being a one year starter but I love this guy.

David Sills WR West Virginia
This was the guy that Lane Kiffin offered a scholarship to when he was in the eighth grade. He started his career as a quarterback and moved to WR. I like that he has the quarterback background and the mentality as a WR. He was a great redzone threat for WV this year. He’s only been at the position for two years but been very productive. I see great potential with this pick.

Round 5

Anthony Johnson UB
I can’t believe that most mock drafts I see Johnson as a fifth or sixth round pick. I’ll go back to back with receiver picks and get great value in Johnson. I’ve seem him play every game at UB and I can tell you that teams feared playing him one on one. Minnesota tried it in his first game for about half a quarter. He burned them twice and that was it. He’s got the perfect NFL receiver body along with being the cousin of Jadeveon Clowney. He can stretch the field as shown many times with catching balls from Tyree Jackson.

TJ Edwards LB Wisconsin
I need to get a linebacker for the Bills. I love the Bills three starters but I don’t see any back-ups. Lorenzo Alexander is retiring after this year as well. Edwards was a four-year starter and former high school QB. He’s great against the run. He’s a solid player that makes no mental mistakes. That’s sounds like the Bills type of player. The reason he’s falling is because he lacks the athleticism to be a great NFL player. I see him as a solid contributor as a back-up and special teams player right from the start.

Round 6

Benny Snell RB Kentucky
I like Snell from watching the improvement that Kentucky team had this year. Snell is built like a truck. He’s 5’10 224 lbs of power and muscle. He was very productive at Kentucky. He left there as the team all-time leading rusher. I can see him as an excellent short yardage back. Anyone I can get that is this productive in the SEC in round six, I see as a bargain.

Round 7

Savion Smith CB Alabama
This is a guy that played DB for the best two programs in the country in terms of DB’s. He was a five star recruit out of high school that signed with LSU. He went to JUCO college then landed at Alabama. He started 12 games with the Tide. He’s very aggressive and willing to throw his nose in vs the run. I see this guy as a steal because he got lost in two of the best programs in college football. I feel if he went almost anywhere else he would have been a four-year starter.

Sutton Smith Edge Northern Illinois

Again looking for value and finding a highly productive player in the MAC. He had 15 sacks last year and I thought tested pretty well at the combine. Little under-sized at only 233 lbs. He’s a project that may have to move to LB in the NFL. He slips because teams aren’t sure where his best fit is. I still like getting a guy that was this productive late in the draft and maybe he finds his way in a year or so.

**Join Bob, Paul Peck & Kevin Sylvester for the annual Buffalo Sports Page NFL Draft Party.  It’s Thursday, April 25th at the Grill at the Dome in Tonawanda.  The event starts at 7:30pm.

Bob Gaughan

Bob Gaughan has worked in Buffalo media for over 25 years. He spent 15 of those years as a staple on WGR radio as a talk show host and sports director. Currently, Bob works for UB Athletics on the radio broadcast of football and women’s basketball. Off the air, he has been an adjunct professor for over 20 years at Buffalo State College where he developed and has taught a class on how to be a talk show host.

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