Buffalo Bills: Making the case to sign free agent CB Chidobe Awuzie
The Buffalo Bills since Sean McDermott and Brandon Beane took over have tried to use older veterans to address the cornerback position opposite Tre’Davious White. While it may cost a little more if the Bills want to add a free agent who could be a long-term solution at the position then Chidobe Awuzie may be the answer.
Chidobe Awuzie was a second round pick by the Dallas Cowboys in the 2017 NFL Draft. While he didn’t begin his rookie season as the starter he did finish that season as the starter by starting the final five games of the regular season and finishing with 10 games played and six starts.
He would then go on to start 30 games over the 2018 and 2019 seasons before playing in eight this past season, starting six of them. This past season, he missed eight games after suffering a hamstring injury and was placed on injured reserve. He also suffered a hamstring injury during his rookie season that forced him to miss six games and this will be something the Buffalo Bills need to consider if they pursue Awuzie.
Through the first four years in the NFL, Awuzie has 213 total tackles, four interceptions and 37 passes defended.
Why the Buffalo Bills might consider signing Chidobe Awuzie
A player like Chidobe Awuzie appears to be the perfect fit for the defensive scheme that the Buffalo Bills run. According to Pro Football Focus, Awuzie is much better in zone than in man coverage and the Bills tend to lean more to zone defenses.
"He’s done his best work in zone coverage, ranking in the 61st percentile in PFF grade, but he’s in just the 35th percentile in single coverage. That matches our scouting report of Awuzie coming out of college, where he looked like an excellent fit in a zone scheme, and that’s likely his best bet once again as he hits free agency."
As I mentioned previously, he also is a younger free agent than what the Buffalo Bills have typically signed at the position. He is only 25 years old and while he has been a bit up and down, he has shown enough to warrant the Bills offering him around a four-year deal and being the number two cornerback for the next few seasons.