Football

2022 4-Round Mock Draft: Buffalo Bills

|
Image for 2022 4-Round Mock Draft: Buffalo Bills

Another April morning, another big mock draft up on Overtime Heroics! The draft season in the National Football League is in full swing. Now that the main portion of free agency is over, the primary needs of the 32 teams heading into the 2022 NFL Draft are avid, with their targets thus being clear.

The Buffalo Bills are amongst the clubs that will be strictly observed and assessed over the next month and a half. In each of the past two campaigns, Buffalo has won the AFC East before losing to the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC playoffs. Back in January, the Bills were beaten at Arrowhead in one of the most dramatic games the NFL postseason has ever seen.

However, as one important season ended, an even more crucial one began. The AFC pennant hopefuls definitely did not disappoint at the start of an offseason that they hope will see that final leap that will send the team to its first Super Bowl in a generation. The Bills retained most of their biggest assets while adding further upgrades such as pass-rusher Von Miller.

As the calendar turns to April, however, positions such as wide receiver, running back, and cornerback, among others, remain vulnerable. Their solutions, therefore, will have to come via the 2022 NFL Draft, set to be held between April 28th and April 30th. In the following four-round mock draft, our dear readers will learn how that prospect can come to fruition.

Note: The online platform The Draft Network was used for the simulation of this mock draft. Moreover, only the Bills were user-controlled, while the other teams chose automatically, based on TDN’s draft boards, as well as a factor of randomness to a lesser extent.

1.25 (25 Overall)

Kaiir Elam, CB, Florida

BATON ROUGE, LOUISIANA – OCTOBER 16: Kaiir Elam #5 of the Florida Gators in action against the LSU Tigers during a game at Tiger Stadium on October 16, 2021 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. (Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images)

Buffalo has, in the near past, enjoyed tremendous success when it comes to stopping opposing air raids, mainly thanks to Tre’Davious White’s dominance. This was barely ever more noticeable than last winter, when the Bills allowed the lowest passer rating in the league.

However, heading into 2022, the unit seems fairly shorthanded. White is still with the club but his colleague in outside coverage, Siran Neal, has started just one game during his four-year professional tenure. Taron Johnson returns as the top nickel corner but the Bills could still be in for a downfall come September. Therefore, the cornerback spot has been widely considered among the possible targets with the 25th overall pick.

Kaiir Elam was the highest-ranked corner left at this point of the simulation and he is undoubtedly worth the selection. And he better be because, unless the better corners fall, there will be few comparable CB assets around that spot.

The Florida product has missed just two games since the start of the 2020 campaign. Furthermore, his big breakthrough came two years ago, when he led the SEC and ranked third in Division I with eleven passes defended. In addition, his ideal role is described as “starting outside cornerback” by TDN so he is just what Buffalo is looking for. Therefore, the fit here is beyond solid.

On a downside note, his drop in stability in 2021 was apparent. Yet, he is the best available player in that department, with deeper WR and RB classer available in the later rounds being a worthy consolation. Roger McCreary (Auburn) is another good corner but he would be a reach at No.25.

2.25 (57 Overall)

Breece Hall, RB, Iowa State

LUBBOCK, TEXAS – NOVEMBER 13: Running back Breece Hall #28 of the Iowa State Cyclones during the first half of the college football game against the Texas Tech Red Raiders at Jones AT&T Stadium on November 13, 2021 in Lubbock, Texas. (Photo by John E. Moore III/Getty Images)

Perhaps a huge surprise in this mock draft, high-profile running back Breece Hall was still on the table with the 57th overall pick. In the past months, Hall’s draft stock has seen much higher levels, with projections most frequently pointing to the late stages of Day One or the early selections of the second round.

Breece Hall had to step up for the Iowa State Cyclones when regular RB David Montgomery left to join the Chicago Bears. Not only did he do just that but he accomplished it in style. The Omaha native registered more than 250 carries in each of his last two years in Ames, also posting a yards/run figure north of 5.5 in both campaigns. His “silverware” collection is highlighted by a first-place finish within the NCAA in rushing attempts, yards, and yards from the line of scrimmage in 2020, as well as two straight top-10 Heisman voting finishes to close out his strong collegiate career. His skills and productivity would receive a warm welcome in any NFL organization, especially considering the fact that he requires weaker draft capital to acquire than top prospects.

Buffalo put on a very satisfying turnout on the ground in 2021, finishing fifth with 4.8 yards per run. However, 26 percent of the workload was in the hands of QB Josh Allen, and relying on your quarterback for rushing production might be the inaugural step forward on the highway to hell. Devin Singletary was beyond solid but the same cannot be said about Zack Moss.

3.25 (89 Overall)

Dylan Parham, G, Memphis

ARLINGTON, TX – DECEMBER 28: Memphis Tigers offensive lineman Dylan Parham (56) lines up during the Cotton Bowl Classic between Memphis and Penn State on December 28, 2019 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, TX. (Photo by George Walker/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

The Bills had one of the best offensive lines across the 2021 NFL season, conceding just 23 sacks, more only than the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Now, the group’s top concern is at the guard post, where Ryan Bates lacks sufficient experience. Therefore, Buffalo should feel more confident in the presence of competition or at least some sort of depth.

Dylan Parham spent his final two seasons in Memphis on the right side of the center, respectively as a tackle and a guard, and gathered lots of praises. According to Pro Football Focus (PFF), Parham had a magnificent 90.6 grade as an RT in 2020 while his switch to RG, which is closer to his anticipated NFL post, was not a struggle either – a grade of 78.8 across a career-high amount of snaps.

4.25 (130 Overall)

Romeo Doubs, WR, Nevada

RENO, NEVADA – OCTOBER 12: Wide receiver Romeo Doubs #7 of the Nevada Wolf Pack gets away from linebacker Jesse Osuna #11 of the San Jose State Spartans at Mackay Stadium on October 12, 2019 in Reno, Nevada. (Photo by Jonathan Devich/Getty Images)

Similar to Hall, Doubs is not expected to be available that late in the 2022 NFL Draft. However, in this simulation, he was on the board and was an almost mandatory selection for a team obviously lacking in that department.

Last year, the Buffalo Bills air raid, which had ranked amongst the top dawgs just a year prior, slid to 16th in passer rating. Given the O-Line’s heroics, the responsibility should be assumed by both QB Josh Allen and his seemingly always-mediocre receiving corps.

The departure of Cole Beasley made that statement even more true. Heading into the second month of the league year, the Bills’ top WRs are Stefon Diggs, Gabriel Davis, and Jamison Crowder, with whom the list of reliable weapons is exhausted. Worse yet – in 2021, the latter of these three names was nowhere near neither his usual nor his current teammates’ level.

Romeo Doubs, out of Nevada, is a more-than-acceptable solution for the late stages of Night Two. In 2021, the 6-foot-2 pass-catcher caught 80 balls, 27th-most in Division I and way more than most of the remaining assets at that point of the event. At the same time, the Los Angeles native was consistent throughout the entirety of his college tenure, registering no less than 40 receptions in each of his four campaigns.

4-Round Bills Mock Draft Recap

All four of the picks in this four-round Buffalo Bills Mock Draft address roster holes that remained unaddressed through free agency. Perhaps a notable exception is the selection of Breece Hall in the second round, but his abilities and the opportunity to decrease the risk of a downturn from the rushing faction are both worth it at that point.

Meanwhile, Kaiir Elam serves as a tool that could hopefully keep one of Buffalo’s strengths in line whereas Dylan Parham comes in as a valuable depth piece, with low-key potential to climb the ladder, at a shorthanded post. Lastly, an addition at WR is absolutely necessary, maybe even earlier than the fourth round, but Doubs more than deserves the wait.

Previous Mock Drafts: LARCINKCSF, GB, TEN

Thanks for reading my Buffalo Bills four-round mock draft. Follow me on Twitter @TeodorTsenov for more of my content and follow @OT_Heroics!

Don’t forget to check out the OTH Football Podcast on both Spotify and Youtube!

main image credit

Embed from Getty Images

Share this article

Teodor Tsenov is a writer in the NFL Department of Overtime Heroics. Teodor joined the media in March 2020, previously writing for Franchise Sports UK. Also a second-year International Sport Management student at The Hague University of Applied Sciences in Den Haag, the Netherlands. Originally from Sofia, Bulgaria.