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2011 NFL Draft - AFC East Team Needs
John Tuvey
April 21, 2011
 

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BUFFALO BILLS (3rd PICK)

Seven picks plus one compensatory pick: 1.3; 2.2; 3.4; 4.3, 4.25 (f/SEA); 5.2; 7.3, 7.44 (comp)

The Bills have enough needs to fill an entire first round, but they’ll have to settle for addressing one of them with the third overall pick. That selection could very well be a quarterback, though that’s not necessarily their greatest need. It could also be a defensive lineman, as Buffalo’s pass rush is desperate for an upgrade. At some point the Bills will be adding offensive linemen, though this draft doesn’t have one worth spending the third pick on. In fact, even if Buffalo does chase a quarterback in Round One the remainder of their draft will focus on the lines, both offensive and defensive. After all, it all starts up front.

Possible options: QB Cam Newton, Auburn; LB Von Miller, Texas A&M; QB Blaine Gabbert, Missouri; OT Gabe Carimi, Wisconsin; OT Derek Sherrod, Mississippi State; OT Orlando Franklin, Miami         

MIAMI DOLPHINS (15th PICK)

Seven picks plus one compensatory pick: 1.15; 3.15; 4.14; 5.15; 6.14; 7.15, 7.16 (f/JAX), 7.34 (comp)

Miami’s second-round pick in this year’s draft brought them Brandon Marshall, so with only one pick in the first 78 the Dolphins essentially have to choose the direction of their offense: do they reach for a quarterback to replace Chad Henne, or do they take their pick of running backs to shoulder the load vacated by the likely departures of both Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams? Both positions will likely be picked over by the time the Dolphins come back on the clock late in Day Two, though Miami may be able to come up with at least part of a backfield committee if they so desire. The Dolphins will also be looking for offensive line depth and safety help, but those needs take a back seat and will be addressed with later-round picks.

Possible options: RB Mark Ingram, Alabama; QB Ryan Mallett, Arkansas; QB Jake Locker, Washington; RB Mikel LeShoure, Illinois; RB Jordan Todman, Connecticut; S Robert Sands, West Virginia 

NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS (17th and 28th picks)

Nine picks: 1.17 (f/OAK), 1.28; 2.1 (f/CAR), 2.28; 3.10 (f/MIN), 3.28; 4.28; 5.28; 6.28

The Patriots have a plethora of picks in the first three rounds and might not have the roster space for so much young talent; don’t be surprised if they package picks to move up and snag two or three targeted players. New England’s needs aren’t glaring, but they could definitely use an upgrade at a handful of key areas: edge rusher, 5-technique defensive end, offensive line (depth and eventual replacements), and a playmaking running back and/or defensive end.

Possible options: DE Cameron Jordan, California; OLB Aldon Smith, Missouri; DE J.J. Watt, Wisconsin; OG Danny Watkins, Baylor; OG/OT Clint Boling, Georgia; LB Martez Wilson, Illinois; RB Ryan Williams, Virginia Tech

NEW YORK JETS (30th PICK)

Six picks: 1.30; 3.30; 4.29; 5.30; 6.29; 7.5 (f/ARI)

The Jets may be losing the bulk of their receiving corps via free agency, but that’s not expected to be the need they address first. Despite not having a second round selection, meaning the earliest they’d have another shot at a wideout would be the 94th overall pick, Rex Ryan is expected to stick to the defensive side of the ball with his first-round pick. Gang Green could add an edge rusher, a five-technique end, or a nose tackle and not surprise anyone. And yes, later on in the draft they’ll have to address what could be a wafer-thin wide receiver position.

Possible options: OT Anthony Castonzo, Boston College; OT Nate Solder, Colorado; OG/OT Danny Watkins, Baylor; DT Stephen Paea, Oregon State; OT/OG Clint Boling, Georgia

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