5 edge defenders at NFL Combine Buffalo Bills could target in 2024 NFL Draft

Chris Braswell
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The Buffalo Bills sink money and draft assets into their defensive line yearly. In 2022, the Bills' front four was solid. They were getting after the quarterback and wreaking havoc. Gregory Rousseau had four sacks through the first four games of that season and Von Miller was worth every penny the Bills forked over to lure him to Buffalo. Then things started to slow down for Buffalo's defensive front, where injuries played a role. Miller was lost for the season and Rousseau managed only 2.5 sacks from Week Five.

Last season, Buffalo brought in free agent Leonard Floyd, who was fantastic through most of the season, recording 10.5 sacks but over the final five games including the playoffs, he had zero sacks. DaQuan Jones and Ed Oliver were playing like All-Pros early, but Jones was lost for the majority of the season, and in the team's playoff loss to the Chiefs, the Bills defensive front disappeared.

I realize some fans don't want to blame it on injuries but the injuries to Miller in 2022 and Jones in 2023, truly affected how well the defensive line was playing. Miller's injury not only ended his 2022 season, but it greatly impacted his effectiveness last season. Many fans are blaming Brandon Beane for the terrible contract given to Miller too. I get it, but let's be honest. If Miller didn't get injured in year one, he would have finished that first season likely with double-digit sacks and I have no reason to believe he wouldn't have been just as effective this season, fans would be praising Beane for the signing.

All that said, I do think the Bills need to revamp their defensive line. I believe Miller will be better next season, about 18 months removed from his ACL injury. I also like DaQuan Jones to return but both of these players are in the last couple of seasons in their careers. Outside of Ed Oliver, there isn't a pass rusher that scares opposing offenses. Sure A.J. Epenesa had 6.5 sacks but his stats come in bunches, similar to Gabe Davis, there just isn't any consistency. Rousseau is similar, except he has become one of the better run-defenders in the game. But what Buffalo needs is their T.J. Watt or Miles Garrett. Someone that game after game, play after play is a constant threat to destroy a play in the backfield off the edge. Will the Bills use another high pick on an edge defender? If they do, here are five players to keep an eye on during the NFL Combine.