By BBD Editor Matt Elder
Earlier today Buffalo Bills GM Buddy Nix spoke with the Howard Simon Show on WGR (Listen Here) and talked specifically about the Quarterback position and what he would be looking for in a QB of the future. Nix who is known as an overly candid GM may have revealed to us more about the way the Bills view this QB class v. how the analysts see it.
First Nix went over some of what he said last week when he said that they are looking for a franchise guy. He was clear that this year with less needs the emphasis to take a QB was there. Nix did state that every year the Bills go into the draft looking for a QB despite not having taken one recently. This tells me that the Bills have a very clearly defined list of who they like as a QB and if the QB isn’t there they are going to move on to another position. They aren’t going to get in a situation where they just take a QB to take one. They are going to continue to honor their value based system.
One thing that Nix does is that he likes to personally see all the top QB’s for the draft class (he mentioned the top 10-15). Now we know the Bills brought in four QB’s last year for pre-draft visits and had scouts attend the games of just about every other QB. We would expect that trend to continue this year. As we learn the Bills pre-draft visits list make sure you pay attention to what QB’s are being brought in.
One of the more interesting statements Nix said was with regard to creating a player. He was clear in saying that when you draft a QB, he has to be the guy, you can’t just create him into that. I think that speaks very clearly to the already established philosophy of the Bills that they are going to draft by their board. They aren’t going to get caught reaching for a QB in Round 1 unless one is there that fits the value. So for those fans who are saying take a QB no matter what be prepared to be disappointed if the Bills pass on a QB in Round 1.
With regard to the class quality Nix said it certainly had less hype and when you’re drafting a QB you’re looking for an Andrew Luck type prospect and if there isn’t one there you need to look at other rounds. It’s a widely held opinion that there is not an Andrew Luck quality QB prospect in this draft.
Finally Nix went over some of the traits he’s looking for in a QB, they were; Height, Arm Strength, Mobility/Athleticism, Accuracy, Anticipation, and Intangibles. He went into extra detailing talking about how he wants a QB who can anticipate a WR’s separation and throw him open. He also wants a guy who commands respect from his teammates and is a leader. Now there are a number of QB’s who fit these characteristics. Below are our current Top 10 QB’s with Round Projections:
1. Geno Smith, West Virginia-Top 10
2. Matt Barkley, USC-Top 20
3. Tyler Wilson, Arkansas-1st
4. Zac Dysert, Miami (OH)-2nd
5. EJ Manuel, FSU-2nd
6. Ryan Nassib, Syracuse-2nd-3rd
7. Landry Jones, Oklahoma-3rd
8. Mike Glennon, NC State-3rd-4th
9. Ryan Aplin, Arkansas State-4th
10. Sean Renfree, Duke-5th
Of those listed above we’d say the best fits are Geno Smith, Zac Dysert, and EJ Manuel. What do you think? Who do you want to see the Bills pick at the QB position?