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Bills looking for receiver opposite JohnsonWake wants new contract or could sit out

The Sports Xchange

The re-signing of young veteran Stevie Johnson solved the question of who will play No. 1 receiver for the Bills in 2012.

But who plays No. 2?

With seven candidates on the current roster and more to come, that position will be among the most hotly contested in training camp. How the Bills value their current crop of receivers will also impact how they draft April 26-28.

Currently on the roster are Donald Jones, David Nelson, Ruvell Martin, Naaman Roosevelt, Derek Hagan, Marcus Easley and free agent David Clowney. The team let Roscoe Parrish (San Diego) walk in free agency.

In for pre-draft visits have been Justin Blackmon of Oklahoma State and Brian Quick of Appalachian State. Norte Dame's Michael Floyd and Baylor's Kendall Wright are also on the Bills' radar.

The Bills value size at wideout and Floyd (6-3, 220) fits that requirement. But with the No. 10 pick, Buffalo may elect to address offensive line and linebacker.

Speed is another topic, of course. Buffalo's deep speed is hurting and was a factor in the team's poor third-down play. Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick completed just 37 of 79 third-down throws for a 44.5 rating over his final nine games, a stretch where the team went 1-9 and crash landed.

Clowney has clocked 4.36 in the 40-yard dash. Hagan has nice size (6-2, 215) and OK speed. But if it's the entire package Buffalo wants, Easley is still a player the coaching staff has high hopes for.

Injuries and illnesses have curtailed his NFL career over the past two seasons. But the 6-2, 221-pound Connecticut product is hoping those days are behind him. Easley was 4.39 on the clock coming out of college and has tremendous upside if he can stay on the field.

Easley, a fourth-round pick in 2010, missed his entire rookie year after knee surgery and all last season with a heart condition. He's been given clearance to take part in all offseason workouts.

"As crazy as it sounds, nothing ever went as planned for me pretty much my whole career," Easley has said.

The Bills begin offseason conditioning on April 23 and organized team activities begin May 29. Rookies and first-year players will conduct a mini-camp May 11-13. There are four OTAs through June and a mandatory mini-camp for all players June 19-21.

Copyright (C) 2012 The Sports Xchange. All Rights Reserved.


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