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7 Bills players that are trending up and down (per Joe B)


JohnNord
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Joe Buscaglia just dropped an interesting podcast where he named 7 Bills that have exceeded expectations and 7 who need to show more in training camp.  Some interesting takeaways:

 

1. Isaiah McKenzie - he’s been unguardable in both zone and man defense.  Solidifying the slot WR over Crowder as he offers better YAC potential.

 

2. Zach Moss - has looked a lot quicker and decisive and could factor into the run game more than initially thought

 

3. Khalil Shakir - smooth route runner that has played well at WR2 and could be a legit backup for Davis.  
 

4. Ed Oliver - making an impact every single practice and destroying the reshuffled OL

 

5. Christian Bedford - holding his own against WR’s and getting some snaps with the 1st team defense.  He’s a lock to make the team.

 

6. Jaquan Johnson - Has outplayed Damar Hamlin.  Offers position flexibility at safety and *could* be a cheaper replacement to Poyer in 2023

 

7. Matt Araiza - Solid holder…constantly punts farther and w/ nearly as much hang time as Haack.

 

 

Players who are not trending downward but need to show more and have yet to impress:

 

1. Kaiir Elam - inconsistent and might be thinking too much.  Has struggled versus Diggs and Davis.  Needs more time/experience

 

2. Spencer Brown - has not practiced with team yet.  Also struggled a bit toward the end of last season.  Might start the year on the bench behind David Quessenberry while he recovers.

 

3. Case Keenum  - has looked “meh” and has showed difficultly pushing the ball downfield.

 

4. Shaq Lawson - he’s made a few plays but has been relatively quiet in training camp

 

5. Greg VanRotten - has not looked good at all and is being outplayed by Greg Mancz.  Could end up on PS

 

6. Baylon Specter - ST potential but there may not be a spot on the 53 this year.

 

7. Tommy Sweeney - loved in the locker room but has been outplayed by Quinton Morris.  No separation and just an average blocker
 

 

Interesting to see Elam on the list but it probably doesn’t help that he’s facing Diggs and Davis each week.  Hopefully things slow for him. 
 

I also wonder if Shaq makes the 53. 

 

 

Edited by JohnNord
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Just now, TBBills said:

Hard to know who to believe in these reports. I have heard many positives abut Elam.

I have read/heard many positives about Elam as well, but like all reporting, one does need to sift through the info, to be able to separate opinions from actual facts/‘more credible reports, also one needs to read info from multiple sources to get a better overall “ feel “ for what’s going on. Concerning Elam, I suspect he as good as he is, is currently on the steepest part of the learning curve as we speak…, 
 

Go Bills!!!

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I, for one, am not surprised to hear that Elam has had his struggles against Diggs and Davis. Those guys routinely put the best corners in the league on skates. That said, I'd feel better if I knew for sure he wouldn't be matching up on each team's best WR to start the season. 

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13 minutes ago, TBBills said:

Hard to know who to believe in these reports. I have heard many positives abut Elam.

Same but I’ve also heard more reports of him struggling/getting burnt than I have about Dane Jackson. Sounds like he is flashing his high upside but still has a lot to learn. So basically he’s been as expected.

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21 minutes ago, TBBills said:

Hard to know who to believe in these reports. I have heard many positives abut Elam.

Don't believe any of it. These guys know nothing about football or have any insight into what the plays/assignments are.

 

Over the years I've enjoyed reading the "play-by-plays", so to speak, of each practice. Just the bare bones recap, not this stupid "who's trending" crap. You can notice trends from day to day on your own, but none of it matters until the games are played. It's the same song and dance every offseason.

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Color me Shaqed that Shaq Lawson is not impressing.  Keith Ellison was better than this guy.  I thought we got a steal when we drafted him at 19.  We got robbed instead.  

 

VanRotten is an awesome Freudian slip, right up there with Isaac McKittrick.

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I wouldn't stress over Elam, I'm not sure any CB comes into the league with things "figured out" mentally. 

 

I would think they are throwing the book at him to attempt to get him ready. If he gets it figures out be week 8 it's a win for the Bills.

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Elam is drinking from a firehouse right now.  He has never faced competition like this.  He is going against elite NFL talent every day.  It is no surprise that he struggles occasionally but the reports from camp indicate to me that he has had his moments as well. He will be one well prepared rookie by the time the season starts.

 

welcome to the school of Josh Allen and Stephon Diggs.

 

Edited by FLFan
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48 minutes ago, Freddie's Dead said:

Color me Shaqed that Shaq Lawson is not impressing.  Keith Ellison was better than this guy.  I thought we got a steal when we drafted him at 19.  We got robbed instead.  

 

VanRotten is an awesome Freudian slip, right up there with Isaac McKittrick.

Came here to speak Shaq but you’ve done it for me.

 

Shaq sucks. Always has and always will.

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18 minutes ago, FLFan said:

Elam is drinking from a firehouse right now.  He has never faced competition like this.  

 

Yes he has. The kid has went against Davonta Smith and Jaylen Waddle. These two players could wind up as 2 of the best receivers in the NFL.

 

The kid is a good player and great competition is not new to him.

 

 

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Also remrmber…vets are taking it easy in early practices not operating at 100%.

 

in route running…context matters. A play might have been designed to create a certain situation to test out players like on the line and not actually comp,etc a pass and the receivers knew this so they weren’t going 100% on a play.

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28 minutes ago, FLFan said:

Elam is drinking from a firehouse right now.  He has never faced competition like this.  He is going against elite NFL talent every day.  It is no surprise that he struggles occasionally but the reports from camp indicate to me that he has had his moments as well. He will be one well prepared rookie by the time the season starts.

 

welcome to the school of Josh Allen and Stephon Diggs.

 

 

6 minutes ago, Bill from NYC said:

Yes he has. The kid has went against Davonta Smith and Jaylen Waddle. These two players could wind up as 2 of the best receivers in the NFL.

 

The kid is a good player and great competition is not new to him.

 

 

 

I think that both posters are correct.  Elam played against Alabama, Georiga and other SEC teams in college that had high NFL draft picks at WR, so he did play against high-level competition.  That said, these college guys (18-20 year old kids) don't yet have the strength and polished route-running skills that an NFL veteran WR like Diggs has.  Assuming they hit their potential, they eventually will.  

 

In any event, Elam has clear talent and should "get there," but it's a pleasant surprise to me to hear that Benford is performing well.  If he pans out, he could be another late-round CB steal for the Bills.  Dane Jackson is trending in that direction already, having played very well down the stretch last season.

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