Looking back in time, every team in the NFL would like a do-over at some point. Atlanta wouldn’t have traded Ladanian Tomlinson for Michael Vick; the Raiders wouldn’t have drafted Jamarcus Russell and the Bills wouldn’t have hired 5 head coaches in 10 years. So looking back at what could have been focuses on former Bills players currently in the NFL playoffs and if they could have helped Buffalo move back into playoff contention.
Seattle RB: Marshawn Lynch
Lynch was drafted by the Bills 12th overall in 2007. He had back to back 1000 yard rushing seasons in his first two seasons, but legal troubles led to a 4 game suspension, which led to Fred Jackson supplanting him as a starter. A new coaching staff drafted RB CJ Spiller for the 2010 season which caused a 3 headed monster at tailback. So what if Spiller was never drafted and Lynch stayed put in Buffalo? Seattle would never make the playoffs with a 7-9 record that season; Lynch wouldn’t have one of the most spectacular runs ever against the Saints and this year, Seattle’s duel threat of having the option quarterback of Russel Wilson and Lynch would not be there.
For the Bills, instead of drafting Spiller, the Bills pick up Jason-Pierre Paul (who was drafted at 15 by the Giants) to beef up their pass rush. Spiller may end up being drafted by San Diego (who originally picked Ryan Matthews) and Spiller plays right out of the gate and is aided by a great Chargers passing game. The problem is Lynch was not well liked in Buffalo, nor did he like it and he would run into more legal troubles helped in part because Fred Jackson outworked him for the starting RB position. This would cause Lynch to be suspended once again by the league and would ultimately lead to the Bills drafting a RB the following season in the likes of a Demarco Murray or a Mikel Leshoure. Lynch would be released and possibly be out of football.
The Bills problems would not be fixed, but they would have their pass rusher who has 26.5 sacks in his career thus far and a decent running back, however, this year we have seen the way Spiller can change a game in a matter of seconds. It would also mean the Bills wouldn’t have to spend $100 million on Mario Williams.
So what would you have done? Get rid of Lynch like the Bills did? Possibly get rid of Jackson at the time? OR remain the status quo?
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