Tag:Dwan Edwards
Posted on: April 20, 2011 1:44 pm
Edited on: April 20, 2011 1:45 pm
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Offseason Checkup: Buffalo Bills

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

S. Johnson had some good moments last year for Buffalo (US Presswire).

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Although the Bills went 4-12 last season and were never in contention for any kind of postseason berth, there was reason for optimism at the end of last year. Against all previous indications, QB Ryan Fitzpatrick wasn’t half-bad, young faces like RB C.J. Spiller and WR Steve Johnson showed potential, and the team took the Steelers, Chiefs and Ravens into overtime before eventually losing.

The head coaching abilities of Chan Gailey – in college or in the NFL – have never been that impressive to me, but I’d be an idiot if I didn’t say that he is making progress in Buffalo. Progress enough to compete with the rest of the AFC East? Not yet. But any kind of progress is good.




Very little elite talent

This obviously is a problem, because, aside from NT Kyle Williams – who’s a top-five interior defensive lineman – the Bills don’t feature any elite players (maybe S Jairus Byrd can get there at some point). With the No. 3 pick in this year’s draft, that should change (you’d like to think so at least, if you’re a Bills fan). But remember, Buffalo went with Aaron Maybin with the No. 11 pick in 2009 and Leodis McKelvin with the No. 11 pick in 2008. Apparently, this franchise doesn’t always know how to pick the elite guys.



1. QUARTERBACK
While Fitzpatrick did a decent enough job at the starting spot last year, after Trent Edwards thoroughly failed at it and Brian Brohm didn’t do enough to win it, Fitzpatrick doesn’t scream, “FUTURE FRANCHISE QB.” Since the Bills have the No. 3 pick in the NFL draft, it makes sense for them to take somebody who could make that claim. Considering GM Buddy Nix said that now is the perfect time to draft a QB, Buffalo might just do it.

2. LINEBACKERS
Buffalo needs to shore up its 3-4 defense in a big way and procure players who can figure out how to get to the opposing quarterback. The Bills – who were tied for 27th in sacks last year – already have Shawne Merriman and Aaron Maybin at OLB, but it’s unclear if the former can stay healthy and the latter has been a big draft bust thus far in his career. Von Miller’s elite speed certainly would help in the linebacker corps.

3. DEFENSIVE LINE
The Bills were the worst team in football at stopping the run, so this spot obviously is in need of an upgrade. The line itself seems to be OK with Kyle Williams and Dwan Edwards, but a Da’Quan Bowers pick wouldn’t be shocking (though many experts are predicting Miller).




The Bills are still nowhere near making a bid for the playoffs, but there’s no reason they can’t improve on last year’s record. I think 8-8 would be a stretch – especially if Fitzpatrick is back at the QB spot – but 6-10 or 7-9 wouldn’t be out of the question. And it would be a sign of more progress.

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Posted on: July 27, 2010 11:07 pm
 

Schobel has more thinking to do

A. Schobel is thinking about returning to Buffalo for another season (Getty). About five weeks ago, longtime Bills defensive end Aaron Schobel thought about ending his career. He said he was leaning toward not playing but that he wasn’t 100 percent sure.

Now, as training camp approaches, he appears to be having second thoughts. According to the Buffalo News , Schobel, a two-time Pro Bowler who’s coming off a 10-sack year, is thinking more seriously about returning for his 10th NFL season.

"I'm leaning more toward playing than I was a month ago," Schobel told The News. "I don't know what the Bills would do or how much time they would give me (to make a decision) but I'm thinking about it."

If he does return, it’ll be interesting to see where he fits into the lineup. Last year, playing a 4-3 defense, the Bills finished 30th in the league in rushing defense, despite the same DL lineup starting 13 of the 16 games. This year, Buffalo has installed a 3-4 scheme with former DT Marcus Stroud lining up at left DE and DT Kyle Williams at the NT. At right DE, the projected starter is former Ravens DE Dwan Edwards.

Schobel most likely would play outside linebacker, which is probably why he thought about retiring in the first place. At 6-foot-4 and about 240 pounds, Schobel would be the right size to play at his new spot.

If he doesn’t return, his spot probably would go to Aaron Maybin – Buffalo’s first-round pick in 2009 who made very little impact last season but who has plenty of upside.

--Josh Katzowitz

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