(WKBW) — At long last, the day we've all been waiting for is here. The 2019 NFL Draft begins at 8:00 pm, which means soon after we'll learn which player the Buffalo Bills are able to add in the first round.
And with it being the day of the draft, it's time for my final mock draft before the event begins. What might be there for the Bills at ninth overall? Without further ado, the seventh and final mock draft before the picks start coming off the board:
1) - QB Kyler Murray, Oklahoma
- Wire-to-wire, Kyler Murray has remained the pick here for the Cardinals. Josh Rosen's future seems destined for somewhere outside of Arizona with this pick, which might just be the best thing for his career. Murray, with the Cardinals' offensive personnel and now head coach, is a fascinating fit that I can't wait to see on the field.
2) - DE Nick Bosa, Ohio State
- The standard pick, but one that seems as close to locked in as Murray to the Cardinals.
3) - DT Quinnen Williams, Alabama
- Ah, those poor New York Jets. They tried to conjure up some late business to get someone to move into third overall but were without a taker
4) - LB Devin White, LSU
- If the Raiders pushed that Dwayne Haskins message out there to get Washington to make a panic move to get into the top three in order for Quinnen Williams to fall to them, what a job well done by Jon Gruden and Mike Mayock if it actually works. However, if they're serious about wanting Haskins and potentially drafting him at fourth overall, that would be the best news possible for the Bills. It would mean that a top flight defender is dropping out of the top five and increases their odds of getting someone high up on their board. However, I think the likeliest scenario is that the rush for quarterbacks happens outside of the top five, and maybe even outside of the top ten. A bit of a surprise pick here with White
5) **TRADE - DT Ed Oliver, Houston
- I know, I know, the reports out there say that the Bills would be willing to trade down. However, GM Brandon Beane's intel does not usually get out into the public realm, and I think they are a stealthy candidate to move up in the draft -- but with one player in mind. Beane is an aggressive poker player as far as the draft is concerned, and the way things are shaping up, if the Bills want a top-tier prospect, they're going to have to pay for it. Ideally, that 40th overall pick would be off the table, but the return from Tampa Bay's side makes this a much more palatable proposition -- especially considering the level of player that the Bills would be getting in defensive tackle Ed Oliver. And as we've seen with past Beane dealings, he does not have a hard time with waving goodbye to a second-round pick if he feels the player he's getting is someone that can dramatically improve the roster. In the deal, while they give up their second-round selection, they get Tampa Bay's third-round pick in return to give them three draft choices in the top 74. With the potential impact Oliver could have on this team, and without sacrificing his entire draft, this is an incredibly realistic scenario for Buffalo the more that I consider it. This is not about filling a need, which of course, it does. This is about trading up to draft what could be an outright superstar in head coach Sean McDermott and defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier's scheme. Once you get past the top-tier of players, there is a drop-off to the point that the Bills might need to be convincing themselves. And while staying at nine to select, say, Jonah Williams is great in theory, there is a lot of late momentum for the two left tackles (he and Andre Dillard) to be gone before Buffalo is even on the board. By going to get Oliver, the Bills would be giving themselves a top-flight prospect that they love, at a position they consider to be critical to their defense. The Bills have operated without pressure from the interior basically for the past two seasons, and it could take their defense to the next level. When you pair that notion with there being a solid contingent of offensive skill players that will be around in the third and fourth round, it gains even more steam. If the Bills want Oliver, which they do, they can't wait around. New York Giants GM Dave Gettleman, who Brandon Beane knows better than anyone, is liable to take just about anyone along the defensive line based on his drafting history. I think the window for the Bills to start considering a move up the board begins with fifth overall, and in this case, they strike a deal with the same team that they dealt with to get Josh Allen last year.
Trade Details: Buffalo receives 5th overall, 70th overall. Tampa Bay receives 9th overall, 40th overall, 112th overall.
6) (from NYJ) - EDGE Josh Allen, Kentucky
- The Giants trade out their top pass rusher, and get the top pass rusher in the draft. The quarterback will come later
7) - OT Jonah Williams, Alabama
8) **TRADE (from DET) - OT Andre Dillard, Washington State
- The Texans must protect their franchise quarterback Deshaun Watson, and in turn, he must learn to get rid of the ball a bit quicker. However, the Texans know that they cannot sit back and let the board come to them. If you want a left tackle in 2019, you better go get him, because there are only two-to-three available in the first two days by my count.
Trade Details: Houston receives 8th overall. Detroit receives 23rd overall, 54th overall, 2020 3rd-round pick.
9) (from BUF) - LB Devin Bush, Michigan
10) - TE TJ Hockenson, Iowa
- With Devin Bush off the board, the Broncos give themselves a big upgrade at the tight end position with the all-around prospect TJ Hockenson -- a spot that quarterback Joe Flacco utilizes a great deal.
11) - OT Jawaan Taylor, Florida
- I know that the Bengals gave an extension to Bobby Hart, but that looks more like a fringer starter's deal than one they've heavily invested in. Instead, they have one last go 'round with Andy Dalton and their new head coach, giving him much more protection from right tackle than in 2018, before deciding if they need to move on from the quarterback in the 2020 offseason.
12) **TRADE (from GB) - QB Daniel Jones, Duke
- Untrusting of Miami's true intentions, Gettleman charges up the board to ensure that he lands his top quarterback. The Giants GM loves to trade up and finds it necessary to move ahead of both Miami and Washington. So the Giants unload some of their later picks and assure themselves of their top pass rusher and their top quarterback on their board, while maintaining their pick in the second round. This would leave the Giants with a total of nine picks in the 2019 NFL Draft.
Trade Details: New York Giants receive 12th overall, 226th overall. Green Bay Packers receive 17th overall, 95th overall, 108th overall, 142nd overall, 180th overall.
13) **TRADE - QB Dwayne Haskins, Ohio State
- Sensing that the time to strike is at this portion of the draft, the Raiders maintain the earlier of their remaining two selections in the first round, while giving the Dolphins what they really want: ammo for the 2020 NFL Draft -- which could wind up being an extremely valuable selection given that the Raiders are, well, the Raiders.
Trade Details: Oakland receives 13th overall, 78th overall, 151st overall. Miami receives 27th overall, 35th overall, 2020 2nd-round pick.
14) - DT Christian Wilkins, Clemson
15) (from WAS) - QB Drew Lock, Missouri
- Washington avoids temptation to move up in the order and still come away with a quarterback in Drew Lock. If all of this Daniel Snyder smoke is true, then Washington coming away with a quarterback becomes much more likely.
16) - EDGE Brian Burns, Florida State
17) (from CLE via NYG) - WR Hollywood Brown, Oklahoma
- I love this fit between the team and player and the Packers picked up more draft ammo, while still getting a player that suits their needs well.
18) - C Garrett Bradbury, NC State
- The Vikings might wind up going offensive line across the board in the first two days of the draft and there wouldn't be many Vikings fans that complain about that.
19) **TRADE (from TEN) - G/T Cody Ford, Oklahoma
- For the cost of their compensatory selection, the Ravens move up ahead of both Tennessee and Seattle to assure themselves of the guard atop their board.
Trade Details: Baltimore receives 19th overall. Tennessee receives 22nd overall, 102nd overall.
20) - CB Rock Ya-Sin, Temple
21) - DL Rashan Gary, Michigan
22) (from BAL) - IOL Erik McCoy, Texas A&M
23) (from HOU) - CB Deandre Baker, Georgia
24) (from CHI) - RB Josh Jacobs, Alabama
- The Raiders clearly want him at 24, but will some team slide ahead of them to get Jacobs? This seems to be his draft floor, if we're to believe everything out there
25) - CB Byron Murphy, Washington
26) - EDGE Clelin Ferrell, Clemson
27) (from DAL via OAK) - DT Jeffery Simmons, Mississippi State
- What better way to support a tank than to take a player that likely won't be able to play for you in his rookie season? Simmons has great potential, though, and could be a home run pick for them when he's back from his injury.
28) - OT Tytus Howard, Alabama State
- Love the player's potential here, and the Chargers will hope he develops rapidly into a starting player in 2019.
29) (from KC) - CB Joejuan Williams, Vanderbilt
- From a size and athletic profile perspective, this is a great fit. Is he worth a first-round pick? Only time will tell.
30) (from NO) - TE Noah Fant, Iowa
31) **TRADE (from LAR) - S Darnell Savage, Maryland
- With some draft picks to play around with, the Buccaneers slide up the board to secure a bit of an "it" name here on draft day.
Trade Details: Tampa Bay receives 31st overall. Los Angeles Rams receive 39th overall, 107th overall.
32) - DT Dexter Lawrence, Clemson
33) - TE Irv Smith, Jr., Alabama
34) (from NYJ) - WR AJ Brown, Ole Miss
35) (from OAK) - G Chris Lindstrom, Boston College
36) - WR DK Metcalf, Ole Miss
- Once a potential top ten pick, Metcalf lands outside of the first round. This is an example of draft season at its core.
37) - OT Greg Little, Ole Miss
38) - WR N'Keal Harry, Arizona State
39) (from TB) - EDGE Montez Sweat, Mississippi State
- The slide ends here for Sweat as he goes to one of the best defensive fronts in the league to grow into all the potential that he has.
40) (from BUF) - CB Greedy Williams, LSU
41) - IOL Elgton Jenkins, Mississippi State
42) - DT Jerry Tillery, Notre Dame
43) - TE Dawson Knox, Ole Miss
44) - T/G Dalton Risner, Kansas State
45) - EDGE Chase Winovich, Michigan
46) - S Johnathan Abram, Mississippi State
47) - CB Justin Layne, Michigan State
48) - WR Hakeem Butler, Iowa State
49) - CB Amani Oruwariye, Penn State
50) - OT Kaleb McGary, Washington
51) - CB Lonnie Johnson, Kentucky
52) - LB Mack Wilson, Alabama
53) (from BAL) - WR Deebo Samuel, South Carolina
54) (from SEA via HOU) - EDGE LJ Collier, TCU
55) - CB Julian Love, Notre Dame
56) (from CHI) - WR Parris Campbell, Ohio State
57) - RB Miles Sanders, Penn State
58) - S Juan Thornhill, Virginia
59) - DT Dre'Mont Jones, Ohio State
60) - DT Trysten Hill, Central Florida
61) - CB Sean Bunting, Central Michigan
62) - IOL Michael Deiter, Wisconsin
63) (from LAR) - G Dru Samia, Oklahoma
64) - S Nasir Adderley, Delaware
65) - G Nate Davis, Charlotte
66) (from OAK) - WR Riley Ridley, Georgia
67) - S Chauncey Gardner-Johnson, Florida
68) - EDGE Christian Miller, Alabama
69) - TE Jace Sternberger, Texas A&M
70) (from TB) - EDGE Jaylon Ferguson, Louisiana Tech
- Quite honestly, I did not expect him to last all the way to this point of the draft, but with a player like Montez Sweat getting pushed all the way out of the first round, it improved the depth of the position to make this pairing happen. From a size, length, and production standpoint, Ferguson is a perfect fit to rush the edge in the Bills' defensive scheme. While he's a bit of a limited athlete that struggles to bend around the edge, he makes up for it with a bevy of moves, the versatility to play both the left and right side at defensive end and he's quite proficient as a run defender. I think Ferguson's warts as a prospect are a bit overblown, and when you watch him play (rather than just his pro day three-cone attempts) you see a player that can regularly find his way into the backfield -- and he did so against the best competition on his schedule this past season in the SEC's LSU and Mississippi State. In the third round, you're not getting perfect prospects. In Ferguson, however, the Bills are getting an immediate upgrade to their rotational defensive end, and a potential answer as a starter when both Jerry Hughes and (likely) Shaq Lawson are due to come off the books in the 2020 offseason. This is as much of a forward-thinking pick as it is a right now pick. Ferguson has the tools to develop into a long-term starter for the Bills.
forfeited pick, used in 2018 NFL Supplemental Draft
71) - LB Jahlani Tavai, Hawai'i
72) - CB Isaiah Johnson, Houston
73) (from DET) - EDGE Jachai Polite, Florida
74) - WR Terry McLaurin, Ohio State
- Keep in mind, with a pair of third-round selections, another fourth-round pick, and two fifth-round selections in their arsenal, the Bills in this instance will be candidates to move back into the second round if there is value that stands out. However, the depth of the wide receiver is quite good, and the Bills find a potential starter in Ohio State's Terry McLaurin. One of the best pure route runners in the draft, McLaurin has good size, offers versatility of where he lines up, yards after the catch ability, and a speed element to his game that helped him to average over 20 yards per catch in his final season with the Buckeyes. He wouldn't be forced into the lineup immediately, but he's a potential long-term starting option that Josh Allen can depend on to understand defenses enough to get open and to gain extra yardage. I think he has the potential to far outplay his draft status of a third-round pick. The best is yet to come with him, it seems.