This past season, the Buffalo Bills didn’t have many new starters from the previous season. In fact, not considering the moves the coaching staff had to make due to injuries the Bills had only two new starters on offense (Stefon Diggs and Daryl Williams) and one full-time starter on defense (Mario Addison) with a rotation at defensive tackle between Vernon Butler and Quinton Jefferson.
This year though the Buffalo Bills could have more competition as some younger players look to take that next step in their careers. These are four players that played some this past season but could end up being starters next season based on moves made this offseason or them beating out last year’s starter.
This rookie season started slow for A.J. Epenesa potentially for a number of reasons. There is a learning curve coming into the NFL and without the offseason workouts and preseason, it could have made that curve steeper for Epenesa.
There is also the possibility that he was changing the way he plays the position. The coaching staff asked him to cut weight to become a little quicker and Brandon Beane talked about this in his end of the season press conference.
As Brandon Beane noted, A.J. Epenesa looked to be playing much better in the second half of the season. While the sacks weren’t necessarily there he was getting pressure on the quarterback with five QB pressures in the last four games, including the playoffs, compared to four in the first 13 games of his career.
The development Epenesa showed, combined with Jerry Hughes and Mario Addison towards the end of their career and potentially shifting to being more of a situational pass rusher could open the door for Epenesa to become the starter next year.