NFL Draft 2012: Trading Up for Matt Kalil Would Be Brilliant Move for Bills

Eric BallFeatured ColumnistApril 25, 2012

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - FEBRUARY 25:  Offensive lineman Matt Kalil of USC participates in a drill during the 2012 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium on February 25, 2012 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Joe Robbins/Getty Images

The Buffalo Bills are either talking too loudly or are attempting to pull off a great bluff.

Currently saddled with the 10th pick, the Bills are looking to trade up, according to CBS Sports’ Charlie Casserly:

Buuffalo I am told would like to trade up to take Matt Kalil and will give up a second rd draft choice to do it.

— Charley Casserly (@CharleyCasserly) April 25, 2012

The USC product is the premier offensive lineman in this draft, and right now is slated to go No. 3 to the Minnesota Vikings. The only sure way the Bills could get a hold of him is to swap with Minnesota and, of course, the price is going to be high.

Surrendering the 10th overall pick and their second-round pick (No. 41 overall) for a surefire franchise left tackle?

I’d say it’s worth it.

Kalil has the strength of a bull combined with the size of a power forward (6'6") and the weight of a sumo wrestler (306 pounds).

What makes him stand out is his outstanding lateral movement because of quick feet. He was able to hoist the 225-pound bench press 30 times at the combine, which shows how easily he can knock would-be pass-rushers off their feet.

The Bills offense line was abysmal in 2011. While QB Ryan Fitzpatrick was only sacked 22 times, he was constantly scrambling, and his play throughout the second half of the season suffered because of it. It’s a position of need, and if they wait to draft an O-Lineman at No. 10, Iowa’s Riley Reiff may or may not be there. The other problem is the gap in talent between the two.

Kalil is a shoo-in for success, while Reiff is not nearly as polished. It’s a much bigger risk.

So if the Bills have to surrender just one pick to move up? It’s an absolute no-brainer.

Then again, this close to the draft, there are smokescreens galore and it’s hard to take any sort of report seriously.

But if Casserly’s report is true, then fans in Buffalo should be thrilled. There are only so many franchise left tackles in the world, and ensuring your QB’s blindside is protected for the next 10 years is not a bad idea at all —even if it means giving up an additional pick that may be able to help right away.

Call it quality over quantity.   

 

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