Buffalo Bills Draft Prospects: Paul Dawson


The Buffalo Bills have a couple of linebackers that are established and can play the game.  They are lacking depth that can come in, play and keep the high level of play from the starters.  Drafting a linebacker may be in the mix for the Buffalo Bills on Day 2 of the draft.   

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The first linebacker that we will take a look at is Paul Dawson out of TCU.  Dawson comes in with a draft grade of 5.86 which places him in the area of a potential NFL starter.

Last year Dawson lead TCU in tackles with 136.  He had 20 tackles for losses as well as coming away with 4 interceptions.  Dawson was able to put a 4.75 40 yard dash together at the combine, so there is some quickness there.

Here are some strengths and weaknesses for Paul Dawson…

"Flexible, agile athlete with good lower-body build. Outstanding instincts. Sees what is happening on the field and senses what is about to happen. Always plays downhill, attacking line of scrimmage. Second-level ghost who is a nightmare for offensive linemen to engage. Instantly unlocks hips and bursts to chase outside. Smooth lateral movement with ability to change direction and mirror running back into the hole. Gets skinny and slips blocks. When blocked, doesn’t stay wired to blocks. Chases sideline to sideline.Not a wrap-up tackler and needs work in finishing blocks. Freelances and sometimes lacks discipline to maintain assignments. Instincts of a middle linebacker but likely too small for the position. Has to win with speed over power as a blitzer. Scouts are very worried about his personal character and say he’s not beloved within the program.– NFL.com"

Dawson has had some issues off the field and that looks to possibly hurt his draft spot.  He has 1st round talent, but with the factor of character issues coming into play, it may drop his stock to a mid to late 2nd or early 3rd.  We will just have to wait and see.

Paul Dawson has been compared to Jessie Tuggle.

The bottom line on Paul Dawson is…

"Outrageously productive linebacker with a nose for the ball. Dawson averages a tackle every 5.3 snaps and either caused or recovered a total of 8 turnovers during the 2014 season. Evaluators understand that Dawson has been a handful while at TCU and that will turn some teams off to him completely. Dawson can play inside in a 2-gap scheme but is a natural fit at 4-3 WILL.– NFL.com"

As far as for the Buffalo Bills, I know that there are players that have had issues off the field and the Buffalo Bills have taken risks with them, one being Seantrel Henderson, who has worked out as a steal for the Buffalo Bills when they took him in the 7th round of last year.  But there also needs to be a medium as to how many players that have existing baggage that could hurt the locker room atmosphere as well as the relationships with other team members.

A coach can only handle so many players with baggage and he shouldn’t have to be a babysitter.

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