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Forget big WR's with the first pick, draft Eric Ebron


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#1 Proteus

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 02:35 PM

Everyone seems to be focused on drafting a big WR when we actually have a good lineup of WR's and the guys that will be available at 9 are no sure things.  We have Stevie, Woods and Goodwin.  TJ Graham sucks and should be released.  Those of you wanting to release Stevie are crazy.  He is still our best WR and if we find someone to take pressure off him, I think he still has some great years left.

I think yo go into the season with Stevie, Woods and Goodwin as 1, 2, 3 on your depth chart.  If you draft someone high you will displace one of them, when I think they could all have great seasons.  I realize none of them have great size but that it seems that is all that people care about when talking about WR's.  We drafted for size alone a few years ago and came up with James Hardy, remember that one?  Sammy Watkins doesn't have great size but if he is there when the Bills pick (which he won't be) and they take another big WR over him, it would be horrendous.

So how do the Bills solve there big receiving target problem?  Draft Eric freaking Ebron.  Ebron is 6'4", 250 lb, athletic feak, with 4.5 speed and most importantly, he has shown that it translates on the field.  He will likely be there when the Bills pick and it would be nice to see the Bills get with the times and draft an athletic pass catching tight end.  Ebron could have a Jimmy Graham or Rob Gronkowski type impact and I think could be a difference maker from day one.  Also if teams have to start accounting for Ebron, that will give room for Stevie and Woods to tear up the defense while Goodwin puts the fear of God into them by going deep.

If the Bills pass on Ebron I believe they will regret it.  The only way I do not take Ebron is if one of the top 3 QB's, Bridwater, Bortles and Manziel, or Sammy Watkins is still on the board.  I highly, highly doubt that will happen.  Clowney will obviously be gone.  Mack is the only other prospect I would consider over Ebron at that point.

Greg Robinson and Jake Matthews are great prospects and I don't think they would be bad picks at 9, but game changing TE's are much harder to find than offensive lineman and the offensive tackle position isn't as important in the passing game as it was 10-15 years ago, with offenses designed to get the ball out quicker.  So I would take Ebron over either of them which is saying a lot, because considering Matthews bloodline and pedigree, he will likely be a HOF NFL tackle.

I think drafting Ebron at 9 would give the Bills a fantastic balance at WR/TE.  Stevie, a great route runner, who finds ways to get open and can tear up defenses when he is not the main target as a defender.  Woods is also seems to be a very good route runner, with more speed than Stevie and probably better hands.  Goodwin who may have the most talent of any of them is obviously a burner who can score any time he touches the ball and can stretch the defense.  Add Ebron to that who is a big, strong, fast, athletic TE who will be too fast for linebackers and too big for safeties.

Draft Ebron and address the offensive line in free agency and the 2nd and third rounds.  Try to find a big sleeper receiver in the later rounds.  Do that and we are doing everything we can to give Manuel a chance.  If he can't succeed with that, then we look for a QB next year.

On a side note:  I would love the Bills to see if Joe Thomas is available.  He has made 7 straight Pro Bowls and arguable the best LT in the NFL.  He has been critical of the Browns front office and we are a couple years ahead of the Browns in the rebuild.  Maybe if we offer our second round pick we could snag him up.  He is 29 but has 4 years left on his contract and will likely play at a Pro Bowl level until he is at least 35.

Even if you had to give up a 3rd or 4th next year I would still do it.  Thomas at LT, Wood at C, Glenn at RT, Ubrik at RG, and sign a quality free agent LG.  Then you would probably have the best offensive line in the NFL or close to it.  An offensive line like that with, Jackson, Spiller, Ebron, Stevie, Woods, and Goodwin as targets...  That would show me the Bills are serious and would give Manuel a sick surrounding cast.  If they did that I could forgive them for then trading Byrd.

#2 FluffHead

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 02:39 PM

I'm all for taking this kid at 9 as well. I think it should be an offense heavy draft and you can get starting linemen later in the draft. Use your premium pick on playmaking talent and this kid has it.

#3 KOKBILLS

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 02:44 PM

View PostProteus, on 23 February 2014 - 02:35 PM, said:

Everyone seems to be focused on drafting a big WR when we actually have a good lineup of WR's and the guys that will be available at 9 are no sure things.  We have Stevie, Woods and Goodwin.  TJ Graham sucks and should be released.  Those of you wanting to release Stevie are crazy.  He is still our best WR and if we find someone to take pressure off him, I think he still has some great years left.

I think yo go into the season with Stevie, Woods and Goodwin as 1, 2, 3 on your depth chart.  If you draft someone high you will displace one of them, when I think they could all have great seasons.  I realize none of them have great size but that it seems that is all that people care about when talking about WR's.  We drafted for size alone a few years ago and came up with James Hardy, remember that one?  Sammy Watkins doesn't have great size but if he is there when the Bills pick (which he won't be) and they take another big WR over him, it would be horrendous.

So how do the Bills solve there big receiving target problem?  Draft Eric freaking Ebron.  Ebron is 6'4", 250 lb, athletic feak, with 4.5 speed and most importantly, he has shown that it translates on the field.  He will likely be there when the Bills pick and it would be nice to see the Bills get with the times and draft an athletic pass catching tight end.  Ebron could have a Jimmy Graham or Rob Gronkowski type impact and I think could be a difference maker from day one.  Also if teams have to start accounting for Ebron, that will give room for Stevie and Woods to tear up the defense while Goodwin puts the fear of God into them by going deep.

If the Bills pass on Ebron I believe they will regret it.  The only way I do not take Ebron is if one of the top 3 QB's, Bridwater, Bortles and Manziel, or Sammy Watkins is still on the board.  I highly, highly doubt that will happen.  Clowney will obviously be gone.  Mack is the only other prospect I would consider over Ebron at that point.

Greg Robinson and Jake Matthews are great prospects and I don't think they would be bad picks at 9, but game changing TE's are much harder to find than offensive lineman and the offensive tackle position isn't as important in the passing game as it was 10-15 years ago, with offenses designed to get the ball out quicker.  So I would take Ebron over either of them which is saying a lot, because considering Matthews bloodline and pedigree, he will likely be a HOF NFL tackle.

I think drafting Ebron at 9 would give the Bills a fantastic balance at WR/TE.  Stevie, a great route runner, who finds ways to get open and can tear up defenses when he is not the main target as a defender.  Woods is also seems to be a very good route runner, with more speed than Stevie and probably better hands.  Goodwin who may have the most talent of any of them is obviously a burner who can score any time he touches the ball and can stretch the defense.  Add Ebron to that who is a big, strong, fast, athletic TE who will be too fast for linebackers and too big for safeties.

Draft Ebron and address the offensive line in free agency and the 2nd and third rounds.  Try to find a big sleeper receiver in the later rounds.  Do that and we are doing everything we can to give Manuel a chance.  If he can't succeed with that, then we look for a QB next year.

On a side note:  I would love the Bills to see if Joe Thomas is available.  He has made 7 straight Pro Bowls and arguable the best LT in the NFL.  He has been critical of the Browns front office and we are a couple years ahead of the Browns in the rebuild.  Maybe if we offer our second round pick we could snag him up.  He is 29 but has 4 years left on his contract and will likely play at a Pro Bowl level until he is at least 35.

Even if you had to give up a 3rd or 4th next year I would still do it.  Thomas at LT, Wood at C, Glenn at RT, Ubrik at RG, and sign a quality free agent LG.  Then you would probably have the best offensive line in the NFL or close to it.  An offensive line like that with, Jackson, Spiller, Ebron, Stevie, Woods, and Goodwin as targets...  That would show me the Bills are serious and would give Manuel a sick surrounding cast.  If they did that I could forgive them for then trading Byrd.

Are you saying trade #9 overall for Joe Thomas? Because it's going to take a lot more than a 3rd or 4th for him...Not that I think Cleveland would consider trading him at all...But I guess anything is possible if the price is right... B-)

#4 Proteus

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 02:47 PM

View PostKOKBILLS, on 23 February 2014 - 02:44 PM, said:

Are you saying trade #9 overall for Joe Thomas? Because it's going to take a lot more than a 3rd or 4th for him...Not that I think Cleveland would consider trading him at all...But I guess anything is possible if the price is right... B-)

No, I said maybe we cold get him for our second, and would be willing to add our 2015 3rd or 4th round pick to get it done.

Edited by Proteus, 23 February 2014 - 02:48 PM.


#5 Johnny Hammersticks

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 02:54 PM

I'd take Mack or Robinson (in that order) before I took Enron at 9.  That said, I wouldn't be terribly upset if the Tarheel was the pick.  Having a play making TE really opens up your play book, and makes your QB's life a lot easier.

#6 KOKBILLS

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 02:58 PM

View PostProteus, on 23 February 2014 - 02:47 PM, said:

No, I said maybe we cold get him for our second, and would be willing to add our 2015 3rd or 4th round pick to get it done.

That would certainly be a steal for Thomas...He may be the best pass blocking LT in the league...I'd rather pay him than Byrd...Again I don't think Cleveland would look to deal him unless they got a King's ransom...But I would be OK with that deal for sure... :thumbsup:

Edited by KOKBILLS, 23 February 2014 - 02:58 PM.


#7 JR in Pittsburgh

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 02:59 PM

I know nothing about Ebron. But isn't 9 high for a TE?

When was the last TE drafted that high?

#8 KOKBILLS

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 03:02 PM

View PostJR in Pittsburgh, on 23 February 2014 - 02:59 PM, said:

I know nothing about Ebron. But isn't 9 high for a TE?

When was the last TE drafted that high?

Ebron is a TE...But he's a TE like Vernon Davis, or Jimmy Graham is a TE...He's a weapon and his skill set is unique to the position...He would create ridiculous match-up problems for Defenses at times...He's definitely a special-situation, and he would likely line-up outside a lot... B-)

#9 JR in Pittsburgh

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 03:07 PM

View PostKOKBILLS, on 23 February 2014 - 03:02 PM, said:



Ebron is a TE...But he's a TE like Vernon Davis, or Jimmy Graham is a TE...He's a weapon and his skill set is unique to the position...He would create ridiculous match-up problems for Defenses at times...He's definitely a special-situation, and he would likely line-up outside a lot... B-)

So, I just did a quick look at the last 15 years' drafts. Only one TE went in the top-10-- Keller Winslow at no. 6.

What else is interesting is that in hindsight, very few of the 1st round TEs were worth a 1st round pick. Even Pettigrew, who people salivated over, has not really shown himself to be worthy of the 20th overall pick.

This isn't to knock Ebron or suggest we shouldn't take him, but just more of an observation.

#10 KOKBILLS

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 03:14 PM

View PostJR in Pittsburgh, on 23 February 2014 - 03:07 PM, said:

So, I just did a quick look at the last 15 years' drafts. Only one TE went in the top-10-- Keller Winslow at no. 6.

What else is interesting is that in hindsight, very few of the 1st round TEs were worth a 1st round pick. Even Pettigrew, who people salivated over, has not really shown himself to be worthy of the 20th overall pick.

This isn't to knock Ebron or suggest we shouldn't take him, but just more of an observation.

It's a fair observation...But I think the idea behind Ebron going that high has to do with the effect players like Davis, Graham, and Gronkowski have had on their respective Offenses in the NFL...The idea being there are a few kids who fit this specific mold that are very special and can absolutely give Defenses fits trying to match-up... B-)

#11 WickedGame

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 03:19 PM

I pegged Ebron a few months ago as the Bills pick. I'm even more convinced today. He's not just a TE: He has WR speed, can split out wide, has elite side/speed/athleticism combination, very good hands, and is a strong blocker.

I'm a guy who loves the idea of a playmaker down the seam, but when you watch his blocking off the line, you get visions of Spiller breaking long runs outside.

He simultaneously improves our O line and our receiving corps, and creates mismatch problems while freeing up other playmakers.

I'm sold at 9, with LB in round 2 (my gut says Skov), and OL in the third. What happens in free agency will obviously clarify our game plan.

#12 T master

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 03:26 PM

Sure the kid is fast & athletic & all the things you want in aTE but i was reading a article (& i will try to find it ) that Ebron had the highest drop per pass attempt of all the TE coming out this draft .

I don't know about you all but we have had more than a few of them & i would rather go O line with the first pick & get a elite pass blocker if any of the top 3 are there at our pick than a athletic TE that drops passes !

I don't know maybe he can get over that with coaching but if EJ isn't afforded the time to go through his reads then it's all for nothing any way !

#13 Johnny Hammersticks

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 03:30 PM

View PostKOKBILLS, on 23 February 2014 - 03:02 PM, said:



Ebron is a TE...But he's a TE like Vernon Davis, or Jimmy Graham is a TE...He's a weapon and his skill set is unique to the position...He would create ridiculous match-up problems for Defenses at times...He's definitely a special-situation, and he would likely line-up outside a lot... B-)

Is he really that good though?  I'm not saying he isn't, but looking at his stats, he seems to disappear at times.  Is that maybe due to the UNC offense?  I've watched the YouTube clips and there is no doubt he is a freak athlete, but is he that good of a receiver?  If he is our pick at 9 he damned better be as good a Vernon Davis.

#14 Kirby Jackson

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 03:39 PM

View PostJR in Pittsburgh, on 23 February 2014 - 03:07 PM, said:



So, I just did a quick look at the last 15 years' drafts. Only one TE went in the top-10-- Keller Winslow at no. 6.

What else is interesting is that in hindsight, very few of the 1st round TEs were worth a 1st round pick. Even Pettigrew, who people salivated over, has not really shown himself to be worthy of the 20th overall pick.

This isn't to knock Ebron or suggest we shouldn't take him, but just more of an observation.
Almost positive that Vernon Davis did as well.

#15 KOKBILLS

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 03:45 PM

View PostJohnny Hammersticks, on 23 February 2014 - 03:30 PM, said:

Is he really that good though?  I'm not saying he isn't, but looking at his stats, he seems to disappear at times.  Is that maybe due to the UNC offense?  I've watched the YouTube clips and there is no doubt he is a freak athlete, but is he that good of a receiver?  If he is our pick at 9 he damned better be as good a Vernon Davis.

I think he certainly can be that good...But you know...There are a million variables before he gets to that level...At the end of the day you take the leap of faith or you don't...There's equal arguments either way...It's the same thing with Mike Evans this year as well...The team that takes Ebron will be pretty certain he's the next Davis or Graham...The team that passes will have doubts... I do think the kid is confident he can be the best...And that's never a bad thing... B-)

#16 ny33

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 04:09 PM

View PostJR in Pittsburgh, on 23 February 2014 - 03:07 PM, said:

So, I just did a quick look at the last 15 years' drafts. Only one TE went in the top-10-- Keller Winslow at no. 6.

What else is interesting is that in hindsight, very few of the 1st round TEs were worth a 1st round pick. Even Pettigrew, who people salivated over, has not really shown himself to be worthy of the 20th overall pick.

This isn't to knock Ebron or suggest we shouldn't take him, but just more of an observation.

Vernon Davis was drafted sixth overall in the 2006 Draft.

#17 Johnny Hammersticks

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 04:19 PM

Eric Ebron would be the product if Tony Gonzalez and Chuck Norris were somehow able to conceive a child.  

Eric Ebron is the reason Waldo is hiding.

Eric Ebron can win a game of Connect 4 in 3 moves.

#18 playman

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 04:41 PM

only watkins over ebron. i´d be happy with any of these 2.

#19 JR in Pittsburgh

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 04:44 PM

View Postny33, on 23 February 2014 - 04:09 PM, said:



Vernon Davis was drafted sixth overall in the 2006 Draft.

You are right. I just did a quick look and must have missed him. Other than Davis and Winslow though, I don't believe there have been other top 10 TE picks in the last 15 years.

Winslow has got to be considered a bust for being drafted that high. And Davis was all but considered a bust until he resurrected his career a couple of years ago.

I am not against the idea of a TE, but this would be an oddity to pick one so high.

#20 Kirby Jackson

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 04:50 PM

View PostJR in Pittsburgh, on 23 February 2014 - 04:44 PM, said:



You are right. I just did a quick look and must have missed him. Other than Davis and Winslow though, I don't believe there have been other top 10 TE picks in the last 15 years.

Winslow has got to be considered a bust for being drafted that high. And Davis was all but considered a bust until he resurrected his career a couple of years ago.

I am not against the idea of a TE, but this would be an oddity to pick one so high.
As would RT statistically. There is not 1 RT in the league drafted in the 1st 9 with the intent of playing RT. I think that both Ebron or RT are in play at 9 but it would certainly buck some trends. It really is going to depend on how the draft board plays out.