2011 NFL Draft: Patrick Peterson Over Von Miller for Buffalo Bills at No. 3

Robert QuinnCorrespondent IApril 24, 2011

ATLANTA - DECEMBER 31:  Patrick Peterson #7 of the LSU Tigers celebrates on the field during the Chick-fil-A Bowl against the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets on December 31, 2008 at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

The 2011 NFL Draft is a week away, and every mock draft around the web has the Buffalo Bills selecting Von Miller, Texas A&M pass rushing linebacker with their No. 3 overall pick.

There is no question that Miller is an intriguing prospect, considering his collegiate production that resulted in 33 sacks and 50.5 tackles for a loss.

However, Patrick Peterson, cornerback out of Louisiana State, is considered by many to be the best overall prospect in the draft.

Prior to the combine, Peterson was projected as a top 15 pick in the upcoming draft, but his incredible performance of a 4.34 40-yard dash, 38" vertical leap and a 10'6" broad jump is simply unbelievable.

  • Patrick Peterson

  • Von Miller


At 6'2", 219 pounds, Peterson is a huge corner, and he has the speed to keep up with the big guys, such as Brandon Marshall or Braylon Edwards, that the Buffalo Bills would see multiple times each year if he were to ultimately be their selection at No. 3 overall.

Peterson was the recipient of the Jim Thorpe and Chuck Bednarik awards, in addition to earning SEC Defensive and Special Teams Player of the Year honors, after picking off four passes and breaking up another six while taking two punt returns back for touchdowns.

Extremely agile for his size, scouts see Peterson playing on either side of the field as well as putting him inside against slot receivers. At the combine, he displayed fluid and smooth hips and was able to stay balanced while running backwards.

The fact that he recorded four interceptions last year is a testimony to how great his ball skills are, as he didn't have many opportunities to make plays while teams were opting against throwing his way. He is great in man-to-man press coverage and has the lockdown ability you look for in a corner.

Scouts see his only deficiency when defending the run, yet his speed and strength still help him get to the ball carrier.

At Louisiana State, Peterson played 13 games as a true freshman in one of the best conferences in the nation. In his three years as a Tiger, Peterson racked up 145 tackles, forced a fumble and intercepted seven passes while averaging 29.1 yards per kick return and 16.1 yards per punt return.

Make no question about it, the Bills need to beef up the defense, but when you have the No. 3 overall pick in the draft, you reserve the right to take the best player available, regardless of "need". This draft is overloaded with 3-4 defensive players that could be great values in later rounds, such as Arizona's Brooks Reed or North Carolina's Marvin Austin.