Buffalo Bills: A look back at the 2022 draft class

Buffalo Bills, 2023 NFL Draft (Photo by David Becker/Getty Images)
Buffalo Bills, 2023 NFL Draft (Photo by David Becker/Getty Images) /
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The Buffalo Bills are approaching the 2023 NFL Draft in a position that is unique for them. Their roster still has obvious needs at middle linebacker, defensive line and tight end, as well as needs for upgrades and depth at wide receiver and offensive line. With so many needs, the Bills draft strategies which have led to enormous success in recent years may be put to the test.

The Bills have emphasized drafting players with elite measurables and physical tools in the early rounds, following Brandon Beane’s strategy of draft, develop and re-sign. This has led to few rookies entering the season as an unquestioned starter.

The exception to this is Tremaine Edmunds, who Beane drafted in his first draft. 2022 rookies Kaiir Elam and James Cook who were drafted and slowly integrated into the Bills system are much better examples of how the Bills typically approach the draft and handle rookie players.

Let’s take a look back at the Buffalo Bills’ 2022 NFL Draft class with an objective lens

While grading draft classes just a year later is an exercise in futility, especially for teams that do not regularly play rookies, we can look back and learn a lot about strategy, which can help us gain insight into how the Bills want to approach the 2023 draft.

It can also be helpful to look back and understand the success that the Bills had, to hopefully understand and appreciate their current approach to this off-season. As we move closer to the 2023 draft, let’s take a look at the eight players selected by the Bills last season – 6 of whom currently project to have a significant role on the 2023 roster.