Bills must get veteran DT

Bills management obviously doesn't think third-year player Ron Edwards is the answer at defensive tackle. When I talked to Pat Williams, he questioned Edwards' intensity and mindset. Edwards is a low-key guy and very pleasant, which is OK, but if that attitude carries over to game day, that might be a problem.

The fact that the Bills have looked for a starting under tackle two off-seasons in a row indicates they are close to giving up on Edwards, their 2001 third-round draft choice - drafted between Travis Henry and Jonas Jennings.

So it's imperative Buffalo sign a veteran defensive tackle. Sure, it could get one in the draft - defensive tackles are deep - but the chance of a rookie coming in and making an impact at that position right away are slim. First, college defensive tackles are usually smaller and less built for the pro game initially, and it takes some time to condition the body to an NFL defensive tackle level. Second, to be a successful NFL defensive tackle, a player must rely on a larger slate of techniques to beat his opponent. He simply can't rely on overpowering the person in front of him because he's bigger and stronger. If that were the case, Leif Larsen - one of the best musclemen ever to play for Buffalo - would have been an All-Pro.

In the draft, Buffalo would be better off picking a defensive end who can use natural abilities to pass rush the quarterback. And I'm not talking about a player with the natural abilities of Erik Flowers either. Flowers had natural talent, but, similar to Edwards, he lacked the fire to compete.


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