By Brandon J. Koch
In part one of talking about the Bills front seven on defense, the line has some major questions and holes.
I think the same thing can be said for the linebacking core. Time to evaluate.
Brown is a unrestricted free agent and will be looking for a pay day after leading the league in tackles with 144. Now of course it’s a production league and Brown did just that, but I think McDermott wants a faster linebacker at that position. Like every offseason, teams tend to overpay, I think Brown will get overpaid by some team. I know they’re two totally different players, but Zach Brown was let go last offseason and he’s faster. I think McDermott wants his own guy to be the mike of this defense. I will be surprised if Brown is back for 2018
What a surprise the 5th round rookie was in 2017. He had 49 tackles and one interception last season and was a mid season starter. I expect him to be in that starting role, only getting better in this defense. He cover a lot of ground as he was a former safety. He’s the definition of a fundamental linebacker.
Another free agent who was a bargain for the Bills defense in 2017. He was at the vet minimum and played very well the first quarter of the season, before suffering a broken thumb. He can be resigned back as a run stopper and for depth.
A down Year in terms of sacks, but he wasn’t used much as a rusher. Alexander was the best player in the wildcard game against the Jaguars. He is a candidate to be a surprise cut at some point this offseason, but he’s only a $2 million dollar cap hit. Pretty cheap for someone who is a veteran in the locker room and is versatile. He can still play and I hope he is back for 2018.
The Bills have holes at the linebacker spot and I expect them to address it early in the draft. McDermott should want to get faster, it will make a difference in stopping the run, short passing game.