Last week we completed the Team Needs for all the teams in the NFC. This week’s we’ll be checking on the teams in the AFC. Once again, these are team needs for starting player, not just upgrades or depth. So, without further ado, let’s get right to the AFC East Team Needs.
Buffalo Bills (picks in the 1st 3 rounds) – 10th. 44th, 75th.
- 2 Cornerbacks – Ronald Darby is a good starting CB, but after that, the cupboard is bare. After the mystifying choice of not franchising their best CB Stephon Gilmore, the Bills now need 2 CBs. They did a great job at getting 2 good Safeties, but CB is a huge hole for them right now.
- Inside Linebacker – If the Bills get an OLB, they can move either Reggie Ragland or Preston Brown inside, but as of now, I’m putting ILB as the need spot. There is currently no one in-house that can fill that 3rd LB spot, so this is a must pick in the 1st 2 days.
- Wide Receiver – When healthy, Sammy Watkins is close to a top 10 WR in the sport. Problem is that he’s oft-injured and when he’s not, they still don’t have a legitimate threat on the other side of him. Bills are in a perfect spot to take 1 of the “big 3” WRs in this class in the 1st
- Right Tackle – Buffalo re-signed Jordan Mills, but he wasn’t that great last year and isn’t good enough that he can’t be replaced. If he was even average, I wouldn’t be naming RT as a position of need.
10th – Mike Williams, WR, Clemson
44th – Ryan Anderson, LB, Alabama
75th – Kevin King, CB, Washington
Miami Dolphins (picks in the 1st 3 rounds) – 22nd, 54th, 97th.
- Guard – The Dolphins are 1 of those teams that may need multiple upgrades at specific positions, but in terms of below average starting quality, the only spot I see is G. It’s a spot they don’t have to address early, so they have a chance to add some good talent early in the draft.
22nd – Haasan Reddick, DE/LB, Temple
54th – Dan Freeney, G, Indiana
97th – Dalvin Tomlinson, DT, Alabama
New England Patriots (picks in the 1st 3 rounds) – 72nd and 96th.
- Linebacker – There aren’t many things you can pick at when talking about the Patriots. However, after trading Jaime Collins, they do have a spot open at LB. They were able to re-sign Dont’a Hightower and they still have Shea McClellin, but they need a 3rd guy to go with them.
- Defensive End – You can never have enough pass rushers and even though they traded for Kony Ealy, this is still a position of need. Rob Ninkovich is 33 years old and Trey Flowers is not a guarantee to make the team.
72nd – Tarell Basham, DE, Ohio
96th – Raekwon McMillan, LB, Ohio State
New York Jets (picks in the 1st 3 rounds) – 6th, 39th, 70th, 107th.
- Quarterback – This is a position that I do not think they will take early, even though they should. They don’t look like they are ready to admit their mistake of taking Christian Hackenberg in the 2nd round of last year’s draft. If they’re smart, they take their future franchise signal caller now.
- Wide Receiver – I still think there is a good chance that Eric Decker will not be on the roster by the time the season starts. Even if he is, they still need another WR because Quincy Enunwa can’t play both outside and slot at the same time.
- Linebacker – Since the Jets seem to be keeping David Harris, I’ll only say 1 LB spot. Ever since the days of Mark Sanchez and Rex Ryan as the coach, they have needed a pass rusher at OLB. Yet, they have still been unable to get one. This should be 1 of the top priorities of their draft.
- Offensive Tackle – They were able to sign Kelvin Beachum to fill one of the 2 giant gaps they have at OT. However, Beachum wasn’t good last year. If it was up to me, some interior OL would also be upgraded, but that’s another issue on its own.
- Tight End – This is another position that has been a hole for a while. Austin Seferian-Jenkins has talent, but he cannot be depended on. Also, he will miss the 1st 2 games of the year due to being suspended for a DUI.
- Nose Tackle – Damon “Snacks” Harrison went to the Giants and turned them into a dominant run defense. The Jets signed Steve McClendon from the Steelers, but he was not near as effective. I feel they could use a mid-round pick on a run-stuffing space eater.
- Running Back – Matt Forte showed his age a little bit last year and the don’t seem to fully trust Bilal Powell. There have been rumors of them taking Leonard Fournette from LSU. I don’t think they get him, but they need to get their future back sooner or later.
6th – OJ Howard, TE, Alabama
39th – TJ Watt, LB, Wisconsin
70th – Chris Godwin, WR Penn State
107th – Roderick Johnson, OT, Florida State
It goes without saying that the Jets are way behind in terms of catching up to the other teams in the division. It’s not going to be an easy couple of years for them. This division is owned by the Patriots for longer than I can remember. Will a team eventually put it together enough to challenge them? Filling their holes and having a couple good drafts may be the start of that. For a team like the Dolphins, that will be the challenge in front of them. Enjoy the draft.