2018 Buffalo Bills Depth Chart
|Quarterback||Josh Allen||Matt Barkley|
|Running Back||LeSean McCoy||Chris Ivory||Marcus Murphy|
|Left Wide Receiver||Kelvin Benjamin||Deonte Thompson|
|Right Wide Receiver||Zay Jones||Ray-Ray McCloud|
|Tight End||Charles Clay||Khari Lee||Jason Croom|
|Full Back||Patrick DiMarco|
|Left Tackle||Dion Dawkins||Marshall Newhouse|
|Left Guard||Vladimir Ducasse||Ike Boettger|
|Center||Ryan Groy||Russell Bodine|
|Right Guard||John Miller||Wyatt Teller|
|Right Tackle||Jordan Mills||Conor McDermott|
The Buffalo Bills took arguably the strangest route to the post-season in 2017-18. Their traveled route was filled with roadblocks in terms of quarterback controversy, leadership roles, and other such team-centered angst. The team managed to earn a playoff spot, a feat that was 17 years in the making. The team got busy in the off-season riding the transitional ship to a rebuild. This new formatting started with a clean slate on offense.
The team traded Tyrod Taylor to the Browns for draft pick rights. Taylor was the team’s practiced starter for the past three seasons. The Buffalo system favored Taylor’s style of play with the run-and-gun format leading to successful numbers on the offensive side of the ball. The team chose to keep Nathan Peterman on the roster, a younger talent who was forced into the starter role midway through the past season. The team signed A.J. McCarron from Cincinnati and drafted Josh Allen in the first round. This created a good carousal of talent for the team to compete with. Internal competitions for the final starting job are still in the balance, but the team enjoys the crop of players it has to choose from. None of the three mentions mirror the game that Tyrod Taylor possessed, which creates a learning curve for the offensive coordinators to adapt to.
The rushing attack is still headlined by lead back, LeSean McCoy. The team finished in the top tier of the competition in terms of rushing yards per game but favored a slight tail-off when compared to averages of years past. The reliability now shifts to a heavier workload for McCoy who is now entering his 9th season in the league. His do-it-all mentality will help carry some of the load for whomever is placed within the starting signal calling role. He brings looks out of the backfield that are quarterback friendly. McCoy enjoyed the up-tempo pace that was shared with the prospect of Tyrod Taylor, so a shift towards a slower game plan could boost or deter his relevance to the offensive attack. This determination will be placed on the shoulders of the offensive coaching staff who need to place McCoy within the proper situations to let his game flourish.
The wide receiver corps has been a revolving door for the team. They drafted Sammy Watkins back in 2014 with high hopes for his future development. This shaping never took hold and Watkins spent much of his career on the injury reserved list. The team made a late transaction last season to bring Kelvin Benjamin into the mix. Benjamin possesses a similar frame to that of Watkins and has reached higher achievements throughout his young career. Jeremy Kerley was signed off waivers and the team recently added Corey Coleman from the Browns, forfeiting little to acquire this talented product. The Coleman and Benjamin combine creates headache on the outsides for opposing defenses. Both are big play and deep ball threats, which is a nice prospect for their air-it-out quarterback pool. Adding these names to help boost the status of Zay Jones creates a size advantage that is rarely matched by opposing defenses.
With the 2018 training camp quickly coming to a close, the roster cuts will hurt the defense most. Cutting down to a 53-man roster that requires some increased depth at the offense leaves little to play around with on defense. The key to a strong defensive showing will be the consistency of the team’s rostered talent. The team drafted Tremaine Edmunds in the first round of this year’s draft, holding him accountable for keeping the core of the linebacker talent centered. Placing him alongside Lorenzo Alexander will foster his development and will provide plenty of looks for the team to adapt to. The log jam comes in the secondary, with few standouts revealing anything to the team. The final pre-season contests will help sort out this issue, but the team will have to rely heavily on Vontae Davis and Micah Hyde to foster in a new group of talent to the secondary. The defensive front is stout and very deep with talent, which makes the roster cut a little more difficult in Buffalo. Their defensive line will have the size needed to keep opposing team’s rushing attacks at bay. They will also influence edge pressure with their talented ends who will use their speed and shucking abilities to penetrate the opposition’s frontline.