With the Buffalo Bills mathematically eliminated from the playoffs, many "Billievers" are looking ahead to the 2012 NFL draft. Buffalo drafted well in 2011, as Marcell Dareus, Aaron Williams, Kelvin Sheppard, Da'Noriss Searcy, Chris Hairston and Justin Rogers saw starting roles.
The Bills have several needs still, most notably at outside linebacker, but also could use upgrades at inside linebacker, wide receiver and cornerback.
Buffalo will most likely hold a top-10 selection yet again, with their record currently at 5-8. Below, I'll take a look at some options the Bills could target with their first-round pick.
If Blackmon somehow falls to the No. 8-No. 11 range where the Bills will likely jump at the chance to grab this machine of a wide receiver. At 21 years old, Blackmon has caught 224 passes for 3,118 yards, while scoring an astounding 35 touchdowns in the last two years.
He won the Biletnikoff Award two years in a row, an award given to the best wide receiver in the country, and was a unanimous All-American.
Assuming the Bills re-sign fellow wide receiver Stevie Johnson, the Bills could have arguably the best one-two punch at receiver in the league. Blackmon would be a great addition to the deep receiving corps and give newly re-signed quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick a better target than the undrafted free agents he has been passing to.
ILB Vontaze Burfict, Arizona State
One of the biggest problems the Bills have had in recent years is stopping the run and covering tight ends. Vontaze Burfict out of Arizona State does both, and would be a solid upgrade over the aging Andra Davis. Alongside rookie Kelvin Sheppard, the two could grow together and bring some ferociousness that the Bills have lacked inside.
Burfict is 6'3", 250 pounds and can get off blocks with ease. In his three years at Arizona State, he has racked up 218 tackles, seven sacks and forced three fumbles.