Mel Kiper Jr. sends Bills questionable pick in first 2023 NFL draft mock
The Buffalo Bills have problems on both sides of the ball, but pass rusher?
The position is one the Bills and general manager Brandon Beane have invested heavily over the past few offseasons. At the top, Von Miller’s massive free-agent deal. Then high draft picks went to the position, including Greg Rousseau, AJ Epenesa and Boogie Basham.
Still, Buffalo doesn’t exactly scare many coming off the edge when Miller wasn’t around. We saw that once he went down with a season-ending knee injury.
All things considered, Beane using his first-round pick on a defensive end seems unlikely right now. However, that could change.
The offseason only just began for the Bills and their needs could drastically change once free agency unfolds, which comes before the 2023 NFL draft.
Now circling over to ESPN’s Mel Kiper Jr., the long-time draft analyst has Buffalo taking Derick Hall, a pass rusher from Auburn, with their top selection at No. 27 overall. Hall is 6-foot-4, 256 pounds and had 6.5 sacks and two forced fumbles in 2022.
Again, it’s early, but Hall is a player to keep on Buffalo’s early-draft radar.
Here’s how Kiper broke down the pick:
Derick Hall, DE/OLB, Auburn
The Bills have one of the league’s best rosters, but they could lose a few defenders in free agency, including Jordan Poyer, Tremaine Edmunds and Shaq Lawson. They need to restock in this draft. And even though Buffalo has used first- or second-round picks on Greg Rousseau, Boogie Basham and AJ Epenesa in the past three drafts, its depth on the edge has to get better. That’s why I see Hall, who had 15.5 sacks over the past two seasons, as a stellar fit on Day 1. He could turn into a steal here.
On the other side of the ball, I almost went with offensive tackle Cody Mauch (North Dakota State), who could play guard early in his career before becoming the team’s long-term left tackle. Guard O’Cyrus Torrence (Florida) could be another option.
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