The Bills’ War Room has historically selected defensive linemen early and often. They have selected back-to-back DTs more than once. Brandon Beane has been a major proponent of drafting defensive hogmollies early,
Sean McDermott in his travels from Philly to Carolina to Buffalo was of the same mind as Beane. Interestingly, McDermott, like Beane, didn’t draft from the ACC or SEC:
Joe Brady, who was a Western Scout for the Arizona Cardinals 2008-2014, and their Asst. Director of Pro Scouting 2014-2017, had similar ideas, drafting DTs from the SEC:
Lake Dawson joined the Bills in May 2017 and continues as the team’s Assistant Director of College Scouting. He’d been the Titans’ VP of Football Operations 2011-2012, and VP Player Personnel 2012-2015. DaQuan Jones was drafted by the Titans and likely made his way to the Bills with Dawson’s blessing.
Dennis Hickey and Joe Schoen did early drafting of DTs while with the Dolphins, even as far back as 2009 while Hickey was with the Bucs. Hickey and Schoen were probably advocates for bringing in Jordan Phillips in March of 2022 and April 2023.
Going forward, I think we’ll see a couple of DTs selected by the Bills in 2024. Selecting what round these favorites of mine will be drafted is foolhardy, but here is a FanSpeak mock (October 2023) where I selected the best-available DT at each of the Bills’ current picks:
With DeQuan Jones, Jordan Phillips, and Eli Ankou all on the wrong side of 30, it’s not unreasonable to re-stock the pantry via free agency and the draft, but given the personnel in the Bills’ War Room, at least one DT will be drafted, and back-to-back picks on Day 1 and/or Day 2 isn’t out of the realm of possibility.
Editor’s babble: And please let it be a DT1T who can plug up the middle. We are so grateful for everything Dean Kindig contributes to our blog. You can also find Dean on Xwitter @TCBILLS_Astro.