The Buffalo Bills gave the New England Patriots a run for their money in the AFC East last year. The Bills had one of the league’s top defenses that shined throughout the 2019 season.
The Bills fell in the Wild Card against the Texans last year, but look to take another step forward this year.
The Bills have been busy this offseason and made some moves to take them to the next level and end the Patriots reign of dominance in the AFC East.
Key Additions: WR Stefon Diggs, G Daryl Williams, DE Quinton Jefferson, CB Josh Norman, DE A.J. Epenesa, and RB Zack Moss.
Key Departures: RB Frank Gore, DE Shaq Lawson, DT Jordan Phillips, and LB Lorenzo Alexander.
Let’s dive into the rest Buffalo Bills roster going into this season.
Starter: Josh Allen
Backups: Matt Barkley, Davis Webb, and Jake Fromm
There is a ton of pressure on Josh Allen this year, entering his third season as starter. He took a major step up last season, throwing for over 3,000 yards and 20 touchdowns, but he needs to make another leap for the Bills to go to the next level.
Allen now has a definite WR1 as the Bills traded for Stefon Diggs from the Vikings before the draft. John Brown returns to the Bills as he and Allen became a long ball threat last year.
Barkley and Webb are back with the Bills this year, but fifth-round pick, Jake Fromm, joins the QB room and is going to compete for the backup spot.
Fromm was once a potential franchise QB after his success with the Georgia Bulldogs in the SEC. Now, Fromm looks to be the backup to Allen, who is the opposite of him.
Allen possesses the physical traits with his size, standing at 6’5″ and 235 pounds. He also has a strong arm and running ability that has been a huge aid of his game so far in his two year career. On the flip side, Fromm has characteristics that Allen doesn’t, including great accuracy and decision making.
The Bills are only going to go as far as Allen will take them. The question is if he will strive under pressure or will he let the pressure get to him?
Starter: Devin Singletary
Backups: Zack Moss, T.J. Yeldon, Christian Wade, Taiwan Jones, Antonio Williams, and Patrick DiMarco
The Bills backfield will be led by Devin Singletary, who rushed for 775 yards and two touchdowns last year in his rookie season. The Bills offense had a strong duo of Singletary and Frank Gore last year, and they combined for over 300 carries and 1,300 yards on the ground.
This year, there will be a new one-two punch as Singletary will now pair with third-round pick, Zack Moss. Moss rushed for 1,416 yards and 15 touchdowns last year with the Utes of Utah. The Bills are looking for the young duo to better the production of Singletary and the future Hall of Famer from a year ago.
T.J. Yeldon returns to Buffalo as a veteran leader and insurance policy, which is the same role he played last year. Christian Wade, the former Rugby star, will look to establish a role on special teams along with veteran Taiwan Jones. Fullback Patrick DiMarco returns and is one of the league’s best blockers at the FB position.
Starters: Stefon Diggs, John Brown, and Cole Beasley
Backups: Gabriel Davis, Robert Foster, Andre Roberts, Isaiah McKenzie, Ray-Ray McCloud, Isaiah Hodgins, Duke Williams, and Nick Easley
The Bills made a huge acquisition at the beginning of the offseason by trading for WR Stefon Diggs. The past two season, Diggs has had 1,000 yards receiving and at least six touchdowns. He is now the top options for Josh Allen.
John Brown became a huge deep threat for Josh Allen last year and is going to remain the top deep threat and number two option this year. Cole Beasley will round out the trio of WR for Allen this year, primarily in the slot role where he was most successful during his time with the Dallas Cowboys.
The Bills posses tremendous depth at the WR position as well. Andre Roberts is a lock on the roster as a former Pro Bowl kick returner. Recent draft picks, Gabriel Davis and Isaiah Hodgins bring size to the position as well.
It has been a long time since the Bills had the WR position as one of their top strengths, and this year could be the year Josh Allen shows why he was a top ten pick in the 2018 draft.
Starter: Dawson Knox
Backups: Lee Smith, Tyler Kroft, and Tommy Sweeney
Dawson Knox displayed flashes of brilliance last year and looks to progress more this year. He possesses terrific athleticism and highlight-reel ability, but he has to work on his technique before his talent can fully show. Knox looks to continually develop and grow his role in the offense this year.
Tyler Kroft signed a three-year deal with Buffalo in 2019, but has continued to struggle with his health. Kroft looks to finally right the ship with his health and become a key contributor to the offense.
Starters: Dion Dawkins (LT), Quinton Spain (LG), Mitch Morse (C), Jon Feliciano (RG), and Cody Ford (RT)
Backups: Daryl Williams (G/T), Spencer Long (G/C), Ty Nsekhe(T), Evan Boehm (C), Victor Salako (T), Ryan Bates (T), Garrett McGhin (T), Ike Boettger (G) Brandon Walton (T), Trey Adams (T), Marquell Harrell (T)
After an overhaul on the offensive line a year ago, the Bills return their entire starting line this season. The line will be led by Quinton Span and Mitch Morse.
The interior play from lineman last year pleased coach Sean McDermott. Feliciano is solid at the RG position, and the team retained Quinton Spain this offseason, signing him to a new three-year deal.
The biggest question is with Cody Ford at RT. He hasn’t reached his full potential yet and Daryl Williams was brought in as insurance if Ford continues to struggle in his development. Buffalo has good overall depth on the line, but the goal is to have better play up front in 2020, with the return of all five starters.
Starters: Mario Addison (DE), Ed Oliver (DT), Star Lotulelei (DT), and Jerry Hughes (DE)
Backups: Trent Murphy (DE), A.J. Epenesa (DE), Quinton Jefferson (DT), Vernon Butler (DT), and Harrison Phillips (DE)
The defensive line for the Bills was one of the biggest strengths last year. Mario Addison and Jerry Hughes return as the leaders of the from four with Ed Oliver entering his second season after starting seven games last year.
Star Lotulelei and Quinton Jefferson will compete for the DT2 role as both veterans look to be key contributors this year.
Trent Murphy will play a depth role this year at the DE position along with second-round pick A.J. Epenesa out of Iowa. The terrific depth up front will pay dividends again this year.
Starters: A.J. Klein, Tremaine Edmunds, and Matt Milano
Backups: Tyler Matakevich, Tyrel Dodson, Vosean Joseph, and Corey Thompsomn
The linebacker position has become one of the league’s top linebackers in just two seasons in the NFL. Over his first two season, Edmunds has had over 100 tackles each season, along with 21 pass deflections and three interceptions. Edmunds is great against the run, but is also solid in coverage.
Matt Milano is coming off the best season in his career, setting career-highs in tackles (101) and pass deflections (9). Milano has improved in each of his three seasons, becoming a solid pair with Edmunds.
This offseason, the Bills added A.J. Klein from the Saints. Klein is solid against the run and is going to be a solid contributor to the LB unit, creating a solid trio of starters for the Bills this year.
Starters: Josh Norman, Tre’Davious White, and Taron Johnson
Backups: Levi Wallace, E.J. Gaines, Siran Neal, and Dane Jackson
The Bills have one of the league’s top secondaries. Last year it was led by one of the league’s top corners, Tre’Davious White. He tied for the league lead in interceptions last year with six, along with his 17 passes defensed.
The team added Josh Norman after his release from the Redskins. Norman brings veteran leadership and experience to the CB unit. He is coming off one of the worst seasons in his career, but looks to bounce back in Buffalo this year.
Taron Johnson is entering his third season. He will be slotted in the nickel position and will rotate with E.J. Gaines, who is coming off of injury.
Starters: Micah Hyde and Jordan Poyer
Backups: Dean Marlowe, Jaquan Johnson, Josh Thomas, and Garrett Taylor
The back end of the secondary is led by Hyde and Poyer. The two combined for 179 tackles, displaying their physicality and athleticism. Poyer is one of the top safeties in the league and is one of the leaders of the defense. Last year, he had over 100 tackles for the second consecutive season. Poyer, alongside Micah Hyde create a hard hitting back end of the secondary for the Buffalo defense.
Starters: Stephen Hauschka (K), Corey Bojorquez (P), and Reid Ferguson (LS)
Hauschka enters his 13th season in the NFL. Over his career, he has an 85.7% success rate on field goals and a 95.7% success rate on extra point attempts.
The Bills are poised to take over the AFC East division this year. They have terrific talent on depth on their defense that will be one of the league’s best again this year. The offense is looking to take a major leap with the acquisition of star WR Stefon Diggs and rookie RB Zack Moss. The Bills could be in the fight for the No. 2 or No. 3 seed in the AFC Playoffs.