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Rd 2, Pick 63 (31): RB James Cook, Georgia


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3 hours ago, The Frankish Reich said:

In a vacuum, well, maybe he's not the best player available at 63.

But picks aren't made in a vacuum. They're made to (1) fill an immediate need, other than what you can fill for more money in free agency or a trade; and (2) build depth for the future when the current contributors become too expensive in free agency.

I see this as mostly (1) - filling an immediate need. We had basically no speed out of the backfield last year. Recognizing that, Daboll started using (ultimately over-using) McKenzie as a substitute, engineering ways to get him outside. But he's not in any way a running back; not even a CJ Spiller type speed back, so that was no plan for improvement in 2022. So they could've traded for a Gio Bernard (a guy without much left in the tank), could've signed a Philip Lindsey type (not the worst idea), or, as they did, tried to fill the roster need by using the 63rd pick overall. There isn't much room elsewhere to crack the roster since McD is unlikely (other than Elam, and I guess Araiza) to depend on non blue-chip rookies to fill a critical position given the fact that this team has Super Bowl aspirations and a Super Bowl-worthy roster already. If Daboll's Giants had used the 63rd overall pick on Cook, well, they would've been idiots. Thankfully we're not in that position anymore.

I still see White as the better player overall and would fill the same need, also drafted later.  I think this was a reach and Beane knew it or he wouldn’t have traded down twice before doing it.  Based on their track record, they do not deserve the benefit of the doubt on RB evaluation.

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I was reading The Draft Network’s scouting report on James Cook to see why he was ranked so low.

 

They only scouted 3 games but noted that 2021 vs Clemson was his “worst game” … so I watched highlights of that game and came away… impressed!

 

He broke a huge run, made some great pass block reads, made something out of nothing on several well-fitted runs. See the video below — I walked away from this very encouraged, given the scouts hated this game. Maybe we stole one with Cooks because he was unfairly labeled a change of pace back?

 

 

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Just now, DCofNC said:

I still see White as the better player overall and would fill the same need, also drafted later.  I think this was a reach and Beane knew it or he wouldn’t have traded down twice before doing it.  Based on their track record, they do not deserve the benefit of the doubt on RB evaluation.

I've seen a lot of both White and Cook as I am a huge UGA fan and live just outside Athens. You're just not correct in your analysis. White is certainly a good back. I think he has a chance to do well with the Raiders. High character player who is a power runner. Cook is a different kind of back, very versatile, quick, shifty, and dangerous. They are not identical skills sets, so I am not sure how you think they could fill the same need. Yes, Cook is probably a third round value, but end of the second is pretty close, Beane accumulated two picks, and did not risk losing a playmaker for the offense.

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“Few teams got worse play on passing downs out of their running backs than the Bills. Enter second-round pick James Cook. I believe the NFL overthought the evaluation of Dalvin's brother. Yes, James is smaller. Yes, he moves differently than almost any NFL running back, with the exception of ... three-time Pro Bowler Dalvin Cook. The lateral quickness, vision, hands and route-running will translate. Taken No. 63 overall, don't be shocked if James Cook winds up catching more than 63 passes as a rookie.”

 

https://www.nfl.com/news/2022-nfl-draft-debrief-a-j-brown-trade-fallout-draft-winners-and-losers-rookie-w

 

 

 

 

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41 minutes ago, Dr. Who said:

I've seen a lot of both White and Cook as I am a huge UGA fan and live just outside Athens. You're just not correct in your analysis. White is certainly a good back. I think he has a chance to do well with the Raiders. High character player who is a power runner. Cook is a different kind of back, very versatile, quick, shifty, and dangerous. They are not identical skills sets, so I am not sure how you think they could fill the same need. Yes, Cook is probably a third round value, but end of the second is pretty close, Beane accumulated two picks, and did not risk losing a playmaker for the offense.

This.  As a Dawgs fan cook is the better fit as we are a passing team but his running is underrated due to lack of touches.  

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1 hour ago, BADOLBILZ said:

 

 

First off.........I would have expected the GM to be on the phone and feeling out the trade up market.    Which was far cheaper than normal.   If trading the second round pick was off the table then that was a mistake.   You need to know your limitations........the second round has been a black hole for Beane.   IMO, you either believe there are reasons for your behavior and their results.........or you aren't self aware and do not.  

 

Yes, I would have taken a LT if the right player was there or reachable.   I had Penning rated very high.    Dawkins can be moved or the player can be moved inside to develop into a LT.   I'm of the opinion that if you get 7 years out of a bad bodied LT like Dawkins you've gotten every bit of what you could have expected.   And that 7th year is right around the corner.   I know @GunnerBill agrees with me about LT not being "set".

 

But why are you going there when 13 WR's went in the first 2 rounds?    And I wouldn't have been averse to taking an edge rusher either.    Why not?   They are carrying 9 or 10 DL and Shaq is a scrub and Epenesa is a disappointment with no production and Basham is an unknown with questionable upside going into his age 25 season.

 

I would have come out of this draft with Jameson Williams.    Perhaps I wouldn't have James Cook or Bernard but I would have had a potential $30M receiver.

 

But let's say the teams in front of me refused to take my superior offer for whatever reason.

 

I take Christian Watson.    And if he were gone I take Jermaine Johnson.    And if he were gone,  Boye Mafe.

 

Because in the Bills system those are premium positions......islands where they are earning their pay without being covered up by position or scheme..........and if they pan out the team would feel compelled to extend them.

 

I'm not sure that's the case with Elam.

 

If they were a press man team,  maybe that's different.   But they play zone.   He will be shielded by the system.

 

He could play well but they could easily decide that they could just plug in a Dane Jackson or Levi Wallace level type of player and be just fine rather than pick up his 5th year option or extend him.     Because they have LITERALLY done that for the past 4 seasons.  

 

You would have traded the Bills first 3 picks to move up to take a guy whose rookie season will be a wash and who if (IF) he becomes productive in years 2 and 3, will probably ask for $30M/year right after, like Deebo is?  Gotta say, that's bold!

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1 hour ago, Doc said:

 

You would have traded the Bills first 3 picks to move up to take a guy whose rookie season will be a wash and who if (IF) he becomes productive in years 2 and 3, will probably ask for $30M/year right after, like Deebo is?  Gotta say, that's bold!

 

Like Deebo?

 

Deebo Samuel is a first team all pro........he put up 1400 yards receiving on 18 yards per reception and also produced 365 yards on the ground and totaled 14 TD's.........basically dragging a sluggish 49ers team to the NFC championship game.

 

The ignorance around the Deebo Samuel situation is crazy..........that would have been easily the best offensive season by a Buffalo Bills receiver in their history.

 

He was basically 1998 Eric Moulds in the air but with 400 more yards of production and 4 more TD's.

 

Yeah........I'd want that kind of impact from a first round pick.    Sign me up.

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3 hours ago, BADOLBILZ said:

 

 

First off.........I would have expected the GM to be on the phone and feeling out the trade up market.    Which was far cheaper than normal.   If trading the second round pick was off the table then that was a mistake.   You need to know your limitations........the second round has been a black hole for Beane.   IMO, you either believe there are reasons for your behavior and their results.........or you aren't self aware and do not.  

 

Yes, I would have taken a LT if the right player was there or reachable.   I had Penning rated very high.    Dawkins can be moved or the player can be moved inside to develop into a LT.   I'm of the opinion that if you get 7 years out of a bad bodied LT like Dawkins you've gotten every bit of what you could have expected.   And that 7th year is right around the corner.   I know @GunnerBill agrees with me about LT not being "set".

 

But why are you going there when 13 WR's went in the first 2 rounds?    And I wouldn't have been averse to taking an edge rusher either.    Why not?   They are carrying 9 or 10 DL and Shaq is a scrub and Epenesa is a disappointment with no production and Basham is an unknown with questionable upside going into his age 25 season.

 

I would have come out of this draft with Jameson Williams.    Perhaps I wouldn't have James Cook or Bernard but I would have had a potential $30M receiver.

 

But let's say the teams in front of me refused to take my superior offer for whatever reason.

 

I take Christian Watson.    And if he were gone I take Jermaine Johnson.    And if he were gone,  Boye Mafe.

 

Because in the Bills system those are premium positions......islands where they are earning their pay without being covered up by position or scheme..........and if they pan out the team would feel compelled to extend them.

 

I'm not sure that's the case with Elam.

 

If they were a press man team,  maybe that's different.   But they play zone.   He will be shielded by the system.

 

He could play well but they could easily decide that they could just plug in a Dane Jackson or Levi Wallace level type of player and be just fine rather than pick up his 5th year option or extend him.     Because they have LITERALLY done that for the past 4 seasons.  

You are incorrect in alot of this, just my opinion.

 

There are two ways to improve the roster, FA and draft.  If you disagree that we should have targeted a CB in FA, fine name him.  But we had a HUGE hole at corner.  As you said, "if we were a press man" team, well now we have thr ability to run more multiple looks on defense, ie: man, press man, press zone.  Not to mention that big/long WRs killed Levi.  Who cares about scheme, Devante Parker owned Levi as did Claypool in game 1 against Steelers...cost us big.  Elam fixes that problem and gives us much needed skill at that position group.

 

You don't overload talent at a single position, and leave a gaping hole elsewhere.  That's like building a pool, while your basement is flooded.  Not a good investment, and "balance" while improving the team with quality players is key.

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3 hours ago, Simon said:

 

I don't remember specifically against who or what particular plays.

I just saw him beating people with that initial burst but then maxing out his top end speed and being run down from behind.

 

Well, if Cook gets run down from behind after gaining 7 yac instead of the abysmal leage-cellar 4.2 yac we had this past season or even the 6 yac Singletary managed on 50 targets, I'll be OK with him being run down from behind.  Bonus if he drops less than 10% of his targets.

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3 hours ago, DCofNC said:

I still see White as the better player overall and would fill the same need, also drafted later.  I think this was a reach and Beane knew it or he wouldn’t have traded down twice before doing it.  Based on their track record, they do not deserve the benefit of the doubt on RB evaluation.

………

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11 minutes ago, MasterStrategist said:

You are incorrect in alot of this, just my opinion.

 

There are two ways to improve the roster, FA and draft.  If you disagree that we should have targeted a CB in FA, fine name him.  But we had a HUGE hole at corner.  As you said, "if we were a press man" team, well now we have thr ability to run more multiple looks on defense, ie: man, press man, press zone.  Not to mention that big/long WRs killed Levi.  Who cares about scheme, Devante Parker owned Levi as did Claypool in game 1 against Steelers...cost us big.  Elam fixes that problem and gives us much needed skill at that position group.

 

You don't overload talent at a single position, and leave a gaping hole elsewhere.  That's like building a pool, while your basement is flooded.  Not a good investment, and "balance" while improving the team with quality players is key.

 

 

They didn't have a HUGE hole at CB.........White, Johnson and Jackson are 3 good starters.

 

They have a lack of proven, high quality depth.

 

Which is also the case at WR.......LT.......DE........Safety......Guard......a lot of positions........they aren't just overloaded everywhere. 

 

And some of those positions have proven A LOT harder to fill/address than the relatively easy-to-fill CB position in Buffalo.

 

You are just assuming that Tre White won't make it back and that now the rookie Elam will be ready to step right in for him and excel if he doesn't.

 

Two assumptions and there is plenty of reason to believe that neither may be right.

 

I am tired of arguing against the HUGE HOLE theory.......... the same way I was rolling my eyes in dismissal at you when you thought the Bills season was over after Tre White got injured.

 

And I was proven right..........they then proceeded to play their best football the next two months with a 6th rounder and UDFA starting at CB.

 

Sure they had a couple bad games defensively because of a lack of pass rush.........but Tre White probably played the worst game of his career at KC in the AFCCG  so assuming that he or a rookie CB would make ANY difference whatsoever in those exact situations is just rosterbation.

 

It's not consistent with what we've seen from this team/defense under McDermott. 

 

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4 hours ago, DCofNC said:

I still see White as the better player overall and would fill the same need, also drafted later.  I think this was a reach and Beane knew it or he wouldn’t have traded down twice before doing it.  Based on their track record, they do not deserve the benefit of the doubt on RB evaluation.

I think that being knew that there was value in those six round pics and gamble that Cook would be available a few spots down cook fits perfectly

37 minutes ago, BADOLBILZ said:

 

 

They didn't have a HUGE hole at CB.........White, Johnson and Jackson are 3 good starters.

 

They have a lack of proven, high quality depth.

 

Which is also the case at WR.......LT.......DE........Safety......Guard......a lot of positions........they aren't just overloaded everywhere. 

 

And some of those positions have proven A LOT harder to fill/address than the relatively easy-to-fill CB position in Buffalo.

 

You are just assuming that Tre White won't make it back and that now the rookie Elam will be ready to step right in for him and excel if he doesn't.

 

Two assumptions and there is plenty of reason to believe that neither may be right.

 

I am tired of arguing against the HUGE HOLE theory.......... the same way I was rolling my eyes in dismissal at you when you thought the Bills season was over after Tre White got injured.

 

And I was proven right..........they then proceeded to play their best football the next two months with a 6th rounder and UDFA starting at CB.

 

Sure they had a couple bad games defensively because of a lack of pass rush.........but Tre White probably played the worst game of his career at KC in the AFCCG  so assuming that he or a rookie CB would make ANY difference whatsoever in those exact situations is just rosterbation.

 

It's not consistent with what we've seen from this team/defense under McDermott. 

 

What is rosturbation

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59 minutes ago, BADOLBILZ said:

 

 

They didn't have a HUGE hole at CB.........White, Johnson and Jackson are 3 good starters.

 

They have a lack of proven, high quality depth.

 

Which is also the case at WR.......LT.......DE........Safety......Guard......a lot of positions........they aren't just overloaded everywhere. 

 

And some of those positions have proven A LOT harder to fill/address than the relatively easy-to-fill CB position in Buffalo.

 

You are just assuming that Tre White won't make it back and that now the rookie Elam will be ready to step right in for him and excel if he doesn't.

 

Two assumptions and there is plenty of reason to believe that neither may be right.

 

I am tired of arguing against the HUGE HOLE theory.......... the same way I was rolling my eyes in dismissal at you when you thought the Bills season was over after Tre White got injured.

 

And I was proven right..........they then proceeded to play their best football the next two months with a 6th rounder and UDFA starting at CB.

 

Sure they had a couple bad games defensively because of a lack of pass rush.........but Tre White probably played the worst game of his career at KC in the AFCCG  so assuming that he or a rookie CB would make ANY difference whatsoever in those exact situations is just rosterbation.

 

It's not consistent with what we've seen from this team/defense under McDermott. 

 

Glad you aren't making any decisions.  Even the GM admitted it was a position of great need, along with anyone who has watched the team over the last year.  We lost one of our starters and the other is injured.  Yea lets just roll into the season like that.  Dane Jackson isn't horrible and still has room to get better but he definitely isnt good enough to go into the season as the only starting option.  CB was definitely a huge hole compared to the other positions, and I think a lot of people overthought it.

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38 minutes ago, bahamasbills said:

Glad you aren't making any decisions.  Even the GM admitted it was a position of great need, along with anyone who has watched the team over the last year.  We lost one of our starters and the other is injured.  Yea lets just roll into the season like that.  Dane Jackson isn't horrible and still has room to get better but he definitely isnt good enough to go into the season as the only starting option.  CB was definitely a huge hole compared to the other positions, and I think a lot of people overthought it.

 

 

I get it, you have no faith in Tre White being able to meet the relatively standard 9 month return plan.

 

Either way, they have plenty of depth now.........they have like 8-10 CB's and plenty of guys with excellent measurables/traits even if they weren't high pedigree draft prospects.........which means little because Levi Wallace and Dane Jackson aren't either.

 

Talent-wise and taking scheme into account it's maybe the deepest they've ever been at CB in their history.  

 

The OL is thin and sketchy and Jake Kumerow is the top backup to Stefon Diggs and Gabe Davis........but it's a defense driven league, amirite?

 

The hand wringing at CB sorta' reminds me of the justification for the Cody Ford pick..........not because Elam won't be better than Ford,  he's much more talented and drafted earlier........but rather just because Beane thinks he needs something doesn't mean he will make the best choice or that the opportunity cost won't be significant.  

 

With Ford they passed on big time WR's to take him and then when he failed to impress at RT they moved him to G........which forced a roster move at G that turned out to be Wyatt Teller getting traded.

 

Not saying Beane just cost himself TWO All Pros again or anything but don't tell me I am wrong because that GM said he needed something.

 

Job #1 is protecting the QB.........Beane also said that right after the season........acknowledging their struggles in that regard in 2021.    125 combined pressures and sacks is ghastly.   Where are the re-inforcements there?   Saffold for Williams mainly just made them older and less versatile and more prone to losing time to injury.    

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8 hours ago, BADOLBILZ said:

 

 

They didn't have a HUGE hole at CB.........White, Johnson and Jackson are 3 good starters.

 

They have a lack of proven, high quality depth.

 

Which is also the case at WR.......LT.......DE........Safety......Guard......a lot of positions........they aren't just overloaded everywhere. 

 

And some of those positions have proven A LOT harder to fill/address than the relatively easy-to-fill CB position in Buffalo.

 

You are just assuming that Tre White won't make it back and that now the rookie Elam will be ready to step right in for him and excel if he doesn't.

 

Two assumptions and there is plenty of reason to believe that neither may be right.

 

I am tired of arguing against the HUGE HOLE theory.......... the same way I was rolling my eyes in dismissal at you when you thought the Bills season was over after Tre White got injured.

 

And I was proven right..........they then proceeded to play their best football the next two months with a 6th rounder and UDFA starting at CB.

 

Sure they had a couple bad games defensively because of a lack of pass rush.........but Tre White probably played the worst game of his career at KC in the AFCCG  so assuming that he or a rookie CB would make ANY difference whatsoever in those exact situations is just rosterbation.

 

It's not consistent with what we've seen from this team/defense under McDermott. 

 

Im hoping Tre is back week 1, as that is what Beane said this week.  And I never said the season was over last year without Tre, not sure where you pulled that comment from.  You just are making up things now.

 

You list WR, LT, DE, S, and G.  That's all i need to know about your misguided opinion.  You say round 1 should be used on high-price FA types, then jnclude S and G?

 

Newsflash, we just drafted two DEs last year, let them develop, not to mention signing Von Miller.

 

I could go the list of positions that you listed and do the exact same thing.  G, I would give you, but again I'm picking CB over G all day, unless thr player value doesn't align.  There were 0 Gs left worth taking at that point, Beane even stated Elam was their last 1st round graded player remaining on the board (hence the trade up).

 

You picked a strange hill to die on, with these arguments with everyone.  Let's see how things play out.  Unlike your poor memory accusing me of what I said (didnot) about Tre, I will remember to carry on this conversation once season starts.

 

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15 hours ago, Hapless Bills Fan said:

 

So let me get this straight.  The positions I mentioned the Bills as being "set" at were QB and WR1 and LT.

Should one conclude you believe we should have drafted a LT or a QB at the bottom of the 1st, while we have Josh Allen signed for $258M through 2028 and Dawkins signed for 3 more years with $12M dead cap, simply because those are the positions which get resigned easy-peasy for >$20M?

 

C'mon man.

 

I'm pretty sure that if a pass rusher or WR the Bills liked with a 1st round grade had fallen to them, they would have pulled the trigger, but we were at the spot in the first round where the guy drafted ahead of us projects as an inside LB, and the next DE has "underdeveloped pass rush" as a tag, then folks were drafting IOL and safety.

Question: what exactly do you believe the Bills should have done with Pick 25 in the 1st round of the 2022 NFL draft?

 

 

Elam is a potential cb 1 in 3-4 years, as Tre White hits his 30's. And cb is most certainly a premium position. 

 

He can make that argument about the 2nd and 3rd picks, but doesn't hold water just bc cb was a position of need. 

 

 

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