Over the course of the next preseason games and up until the final roster cut, I will be predicting the final roster from position to position. This first segment will contain the one bright spot of the Bills defense last year, the cornerbacks.
Terrence Mcgee: He was injured much of last year but will come back as the number one corner. Since being drafted in the 4th round he has shown that he has the ability to be a top corner, and so the Bills rewarded him with a long-term contract. Expect him to return to form this season.
Leodis Mckelvin: In his rookie season while sharing time with Jabari Greer, Mckelvin showed promise, and his dynamic speed and awareness. Though he does not have great hands, he does have the ability to read the wide receiver. He will not get interceptions often, but will break up passes whenever the wide receiver allows him to. His last season was cut short by injury. This season however, I believe he is ready to breakout. He will be the number 2 cornerback opposite Mcgee this season.
Drayton Florence: Last season Florence re-emerged after a poor season in Jacksonville. He posted one of the lowest YPR (yards per reception) total in the league, and had a combined 60 tackles and 1 interception while only starting 13 games. He is not going to wow you with his play. But his bone jarring hits and great run defense is more then enough from him to be considered a good cornerback. This season I believe he will be the nickel corner. While some of you may say, why would you put him as a nickel corner if he is so good? The answer is this. I believe his playstyle and body type, is better served in the slot role. He is 6'0 tall, and 195 lbs. His large frame, and physical playstyle is better served as the nickel corner.
Reggie Corner: Last season after Terrence Mcgee went down with injury, Reggie Corner took his place on the outside with Drayton Florence. Even though he is a smaller cornerback, he has the ability to cover larger receivers. He only started 8 games last season, but had 9 passes defended, and one interception. Expect him to hold the backup spots behind McKelvin and Mcgee on the outside.
Ashton Youboty: Ashton Youboty has had an injury plagued career. However, he is still a good enough corner to retain on the roster for backup purposed (He would even be a nickel corner on most teams). Youboty is really the jack of all trades. He can play on the outside or in the slot. Few seasons ago, Youboty had a GREAT preseason, and was all over the field. He won the Nickel role and was excelling at it until he was again bit by the injury bug. Now, he is more of a backup, but a great backup. He still has promise, but I do not expect him to start this season unless the secondary gets decimated by injuries.
Ellis Lankster: Late round pick in last years draft who, with his great training camp and interceptions in the preseason, made the final roster. He has good awareness, and ball skills, but will most likely be inactive most weeks unless injuries happen.
This season I think the Bills will again have one of the better pass defenses in the league. Cornerback is exceptionally deep, and expect more man to man in the 3-4. This will allow them to make more plays on the ball. Lastly, the run defense will improve in the 3-4 as opposed to the Tampa-2 as this allows more one on one with less chance of the big play.