Buffalo Bills: History of drafting quarterbacks in the first round

Jim Kelly, Buffalo Bills. Mandatory Credit: Rick Stewart /Allsport
Jim Kelly, Buffalo Bills. Mandatory Credit: Rick Stewart /Allsport /
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(Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images) /

Assuming the Buffalo Bills don’t pull off the greatest smokescreen of all time, let’s review their history at drafting quarterbacks in the first round of the NFL draft.

If the Buffalo Bills follow through on the general expectation that they will take a quarterback in the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft, it will be just the fourth time in franchise history they have done so.

Previous draft picks have resulted in highs and lows, but mostly disappointments. There are a variety of reasons for the mixed results, and even more opinions as to why a quarterback selected so high would become a bust.

Quarterback is arguably the most important position on a NFL football team. Those with franchise quarterbacks typically are perennial playoff contenders. While those without have much tougher obstacles to overcome in order to make the playoffs.

For quarterbacks, the factors that play into their success seems obvious. Have a strong offensive system to match their skill sets, good supporting casts, strong management and a defense that can do just enough to relieve some of the pressure.

The Bills appear to have the strong management and defense to support a franchise quarterback, but the offense is still to be determined. Regardless of changes along the offensive line, there are still plenty of skill players to aid a young quarterback as they develop in 2018.

To prepare for a fourth quarterback selection, it is important to appreciate the three predecessors who helped shape Bills draft history. Starting with the most successful quarterback the Bills have ever selected in the first round.