We are now just hours away from the Bills reporting for training camp at St. John Fisher.
As we near the start of the 2022 NFL season, we take a look at the roster Brandon Beane has built for Sean McDermott. In many ways, an embarrassment of riches.
Today’s preview is linebackers.
Matt Milano is one of the league’s best linebackers in coverage. Whether against tight ends or running backs, he can hang with the best of them.
No matter your stance on Tremaine Edmunds, his sheer height and athleticism erase a ton of problems over the middle. There’s a reason the Bills rarely take either off the field.
Weakness: Run Stopping
Milano and Edmunds aren’t bad here, but neither is great fighting off blocks. The Bills need a good year from DaQuan Jones up front just like they needed it from Star Lotulelei.
Tyrell Dodson is very solid and can help a bit here, but AJ Klein isn’t walking through that door to toughen the Bills up against the run.
The linebacker depth is already pretty good with Dodson and Tyler Matakevich. So, where does third rounder Terrell Bernard fit in? Or even seventh round pick Baylon Spector?
There are certainly questions about whether Edmunds comes back next year since his contract expires at the end of this season. However, Bernard seems a much better replacement for Milano and Milano’s cap hit does balloon to eight figures for the first time next season.
Even if Bernard is primarily a 2023 solution, it’s still likely the Bills have some 2022 plan for him. On a team that plays the same two linebackers every down, there has to be a reason why the Bills used so much draft capital on what appeared a set position.