by Bob Gaughan, Buffalo Sports Page
Here is a complete list of Bills draft picks for 2018. This is a realistic view of how I feel the Bills will trade up for a quarterback yet fill all of their current needs. I viewed as many full seven round mock drafts as I could to try to make realistic selections as to players that might be available when the Bills pick.
Note: I have the Bills trading up in the draft and in this draft trading both first round picks and a second round pick. I feel that this is what they would give up in this draft even if they traded up to number two with the NY Giants. They would have to give away next year’s first round pick in that case. This covers me for any trade between 2-7 in the draft. The Bills are left with one pick in round two, two picks in round three and one selection in rounds four, five and six.
For each position other than QB, I tried to give the Bills options of other players I was considering.
Here’s my complete draft:
Josh Rosen QB UCLA- This has been my guy all year and I’m sticking with it. I feel that the Bills will come away with one of the Big 4 QB’s. Rosen may cost you the least. This is because of injury concerns. I still love the guy. He’s the most pro-ready QB in this draft. His upside is huge. Think of Aaron Rodgers as a potential upside. Is there a downside, sure? The downside is more of a Sam Bradford career, a guy that just can’t stay healthy. With QB’s I’m always going to side with the bigger upside and I believe he is the pure pocket passer that Bills fans have been longing for years.
DJ Chark- WR LSU- I feel there will be just two receivers taken in round one but there will be a run on receivers in round two. The Bills need to jump on that run. Chark showed at the combine he brings much needed speed to the Bills WR’s. The Bills need to draft a WR that can extend the field. Chark is not a perfect prospect. He’s limited in his route running skills and poor QB play at LSU hurt his development. I’m drafting him on the potential that he will improve and become a true number one receiver down the road.
Alternate pick at position: Tre-quan Smith (UCF), Jaleel Scott-New Mexico State- (both rounds 3-5.)
Pick 65 from Browns: Austin Corbett- Guard Nevada-in every mock draft I saw Corbett goes either just before or just after the Bills pick. He jumped out at the Senior Bowl for me with his impressive week of practices. Corbett has been a team captain since his sophomore year. He played left tackle with the Wolfpack but is projected as a guard in the NFL. He’s the hard-nosed guard the Bills can plug in right away and take the place of Richie Incognito. The Bills don’t miss a beat when they land Corbett.
Alternate pick at position: Frank Ragnow (Round 2-3), Mason Cole (Round 4-5).
Fred Warner LB BYU- The Bills covet linebackers with speed that can cover sideline to sideline and aren’t a liability in pass coverage. Here’s your man. A versatile player that’s 6-4 and 230 but moves like a safety. Impressive in pass situations. I thought he proved at the Senior Bowl he was better against the run than teams expected. The Bills brought him in for a pre-draft visit and I feel they believe he can fill the LB void they currently have on the roster.
Alternate pick at position: Josey Jewell Iowa or Oren Burks-Vanderbilt (Round 4).
MJ Stewart-North Carolina CB-of the positions of need for the Bills the one that I let slip to round four is cornerback because I believe this is a deep CB draft and they can get a guy like Stewart here. The Bills love versatility and here’s a guy that can play CB or safety. He’s a slot corner in nickel to start for the Bills. He was the best slot corner at the Senior Bowl. He mirrored the receiver’s movements really well in Mobile. He slips here because teams may believe he can only play the slot. He can play man or in zone. I feel he’s a perfect fit for the Bills defense.
Alternate pick at position: Bills pick a corner in round 3 Duke Dawson-Florida.
Poona Ford: DT Texas: labeled too short because he is only 5’11. He wasn’t invited to the combine. I like Ford because he was very productive in college. He was the Big 12 defensive lineman of the year. His ability to disengage from contact is impressive. He’s a 4-3 DT that the Bills need because this is Kyle Williams last year. He’s the disruptive player that can penetrate and fill the same role Williams currently has with the team. Solid vs the run needs to improve his pass rush skills.
Alternate pick at the position: RJ Mcintosh-Miami Florida round 5 as well.
Mark Walton RB- Miami Florida-a running back the Bills like will slip to round six. Ourlads has Walton going in round six. I’ll give a list of names that are day three picks. Kaeln Ballage Arizona State, Justin Jackson Northwestern, Akum Wadley Iowa. Not sure exactly which one will slip but this is a deep RB draft and the Bills can get a quality RB here. Walton had an ankle injury that ended his season early. In 2016 with a full season he rushed for over 1,100 yards and 14 touchdowns. Walton didn’t fumble in his last 274 carries.
Bob looks at the Wide Receivers the Bills can get in Rounds 2-3