This is a brand new article series that I am starting called “If I Were a GM.” This series will be articles about things I would do if I was the general manager of NFL Teams and list out the perfect scenario that could play out. I’m going to go through each NFL team and highlight some offseason moves and draft picks that would set that respective team up for the future. All 32 NFL teams will be included in this series and the series will end before the 2019 NFL Draft. I’m going to be wheeling and dealing and I hope you guys enjoy the series.
The Buffalo Bills have a solid foundation in place and can look to fast forward the rebuild. It makes it easy when you have the amount of resources the Bills have this offseason. With the Patriots dominating to AFC East for so long, the NFL is craving for some competition in that division. The Bills have the best chance of doing so as of right now, but make no mistake, this team needs plenty of help on the field.
What I have to work with: 29 million in cap space and 10 draft picks (Rounds 1, 2, 3, 4 (2), 5 (2), 6, and 7 (2))
Notable Players: Josh Allen, LeSean McCoy, Tre’Davious White, Tremaine Edwards
Biggest Needs: WR, TE, RB, OL, DT
The Bills need to get younger and get rid of some unneeded contracts. I would release McCoy, Ivory, and Alexander to free up 10 million in cap space and get my roster to a younger stage. With the free agent additions already made, these moves will not be noticed.
After releases: 39 million in cap space and 10 draft picks
Free Agency and Trades
The Bills do not have many trade candidates, as most should just be released. However, trading my fifth rounder for Duke Johnson makes a whole lot of sense. He is a versatile playmaker and can take the pressure off of Josh Allen. Releasing McCoy and Ivory allows me to move ahead with Frank Gore and Johnson, along with a rookie. On to free agency, with a whole lot of money to spend, here is what I would do. Sign Danny Shelton for around 6 million a year. Pairing Shelton and Star Lotulelei means nobody is getting through the middle of my defensive line. Sign T.J. Lang and Ryan Schraeder. These offensive lineman were cap casualties and it couldn’t have worked out better for me. Both are relatively young for offensive lineman and can be solid pieces for a couple years. Both can be had for around 13 million, and that is being generous.
After Free Agency and Trades: 21 million in cap space and the additions of Duke Johnson Jr., Danny Shelton, T.J. Lang, and Ryan Schraeder.
Round 1, Pick 9: D.K. Metcalf, WR, Ole Miss- Boosting my offensive line and defense in free agency allows me to draft offensively. Taking the best WR who just happens to be a freak of nature gives me a true number one wideout for Josh Allen.
Round 2, Pick 8: Irv Smith Jr., TE, Alabama- Getting a first round talent that fell into the early second, I am desperate for a tight end and Irv Smith is the real deal. He plays with excellent athleticism and skill and will give me another receiver.
Round 3, Pick 10: Miles Sanders, RB, Penn State- I complete the trio of skill players with this pick. Miles Sanders is a low gravity running back with great balance and quickness. He improved his stock in the combine and he should be an easy mid round selection. He catches passes as well, so I now have potential three down workhorse and a complementary back in Duke Johnson Jr. and Frank Gore.
Round 4, Pick 10: Beau Benzschawel, OL, Wisconsin- Needing some more bodies on my offensive line, picking a high upside offensive lineman is a good choice here. Beau is a athletic guard who can move and block in the second level of the defense. If he can bulk up and play with NFL strength, then I can have a starting guard for the future.
Remaining picks are in positions of need are (in order): DT, OL, EDGE, OLB, CB, S
The Bills have been big players in free agency thus far. They have gotten Josh Allen some speedy weapons, and with the signings I highlighted, have put a band-aid on the offensive line. The defense will be solid as always in Buffalo and the rebuild is shaping up nicely. The Bills should add nice additions such as Duke Johnson Jr., John Brown, Cole Beasley, D.K. Metcalf, Irv Smith Jr., Danny Shelton, and Miles Sanders.
With a young and exciting roster like this, Bills Mafia would be proud and the Buffalo Bills can make a run for the wild card spot.