Buffalo Bills: C.J. Spiller and 5 Players Primed for Breakout Seasons
It's been a rough decade for Buffalo Bills fans around the world, as the franchise hasn't made a playoff appearance since 1999. However, "Billievers" have some hope this year after having one of the better drafts in recent history.
Additionally, there are quite a few players looking to breakout and become top-tier players in the National Football League.
RB C.J. Spiller
The Buffalo Bills took C.J. Spiller, the speedy running back out of Clemson, with the No. 9 overall pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, but he failed to reach the high expectations many fans had for him.
He rushed just 74 times, amassing 283 yards, but failed to score one rushing touchdown the whole season. Spiller caught 24 passes for 157 yards and a touchdown.
He proved a viable option on special teams, returning 44 kicks for an average of 23.2 yards per return and took one back for a touchdown.
Now, with a more solidified offensive line and a full season of NFL game experience under his belt, Spiller should be ready to make the leap to prove his worth as a top ten draft pick.
TE Shawn Nelson
Shawn Nelson was drafted in the fourth round of the 2009 NFL Draft, and at 6'5", 240 pounds, he has the combination of size, strength, and speed the Bills wanted in a tight end, a position that hasn't been strong in years.
Nelson appeared in just five games last season due to suspension and injuries, and has caught just 20 passes for 181 yards in his first two years in the National Football League.
However, at Southern Mississippi, Nelson was a go-to threat, catching 157 passes for 2,054 yards and 16 touchdowns. He is entering that magical third year in the league, and hopefully he emerges into a premier talent.
CB Leodis McKelvin
Leodis McKelvin is another first-round draft pick of the Buffalo Bills that hasn't really developed into what was expected of him.
Entering his fourth year in the league, McKelvin has racked up 105 tackles, four interceptions, 17 pass breakups, and two forced fumbles, in addition to being a solid kick returner.
He missed nearly the entire 2009 season with an injury, which most likely put a damper on his development, but he played well last season and should be set to make a statement in 2011.
WR David Nelson
An undrafted free agent pickup during the offseason last year, wide receiver David Nelson, out of the University of Florida, had a solid rookie year for the Buffalo Bills.
He caught 31 passes for 353 yards and scored three touchdowns, while fighting his way in practices to earn reps on the field.
He is a big target with great hands, and after the promise of his rookie year, one could only expect even more out of Nelson in 2011.
LB Arthur Moats
While Arthur Moats may best be known for ending Brett Favre's streak of consecutive games started, he showed improvement game after game towards the end of the 2010 season.
In his limited playing time, he racked up 33 tackles, 2.5 sacks, and a forced fumble. Moats was a force on special teams as well.
The Bills are deep at the linebacker position, but with Moats' versatility, he will definitely have many opportunities to breakout as a solid pass rusher.