Buffalo Bills: Will Cordy Glenn Prove to Be the Biggest Steal of 2012 NFL Draft?

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Buffalo Bills: Will Cordy Glenn Prove to Be the Biggest Steal of 2012 NFL Draft?
Rick Stewart/Getty Images

A lot of people believed that former Georgia offensive lineman Cordy Glenn could end up with the Buffalo Bills during the 2012 NFL draft. They just didn’t think it would be in the second round.

Leading up to the draft, Bills fans, writers, analysts and even mock draft experts were all having a difficult time trying to figure out exactly what the Bills were going to do with the 10th overall pick. With so many options and a handful of scattered needs, trying to predict the pick was a troubling task.

One person who certainly wasn’t clamoring about, though, was Bills GM Buddy Nix. The Bills have had a plan during the last few seasons, and that sentiment carried over to draft day. Buffalo got the playmaker it wanted at pick 10, opting for cornerback Stephon Gilmore out of South Carolina.

But that doesn’t mean Nix, like everyone else, wasn’t surprised to see Cordy Glenn still available with their second-round pick.

Originally a player that many felt could be an option for the Bills at 10, Glenn landed with the team at pick 41. It seemed like quite a steal for Buffalo at the time, whose top needs certainly included addressing the left tackle position.

However, considering the importance of the position and the rarity of finding true franchise left tackles, Glenn could wind up being the biggest steal of the entire draft class.

Because the NFL has evolved into a passing league, the value of pass-protectors (especially blindside blockers) is even higher than in the past. This is evident just by looking at some of the top left tackle prospects selected in recent drafts:

Player Year Drafted Team Overall Pick
D'Brickashaw Ferguson 2006 Jets 4
Joe Thomas 2007 Browns 3
Jake Long 2008 Dolphins 1
Jason Smith 2009 Rams 2
Trent Williams 2010 Redskins 4
Russell Okung 2010 Seahawks 6
Tyron Smith 2011 Cowboys 9
Matt Kalil 2012 Vikings 4

 

Clearly, when teams feel there are long-term left tackles there for the taking, they snatch them up quickly. And sometimes, as in the case of the Browns and Dolphins, they view those players as feature players to build their entire teams around.

For these reasons, Cordy Glenn could turn out to be an absolutely mind-boggling steal for the Buffalo Bills. All of the aforementioned players, who were seen as franchise-cornerstone left tackles, were taken in the top 10 picks overall. The Bills snatched up Glenn at 41.

According to the Associated Press via BuffaloBills.com, the Bills are expecting Glenn to take over the starting left tackle position left vacated by Demetress Bell. The rookie has been receiving all the first-team reps during OTAs and minicamp, so the opportunity is certainly there for him.

That’s the easy part.

The difficult part will be producing on Sundays and adapting to the NFL. There are high expectations for the Bills in 2012, and Glenn will need to prove he can be a part of that success from day one. For a rookie playing one of the most difficult positions on the offensive line, it won’t be a walk in the park.

However, Glenn clearly has the size, ability and potential to succeed. And if he does, the Bills will have themselves a franchise left tackle to plug in for many years.

If that happens, Glenn would turn out to be the biggest steal from this year’s draft.

 

Follow @JoshCembellin on Twitter

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