Willis McGahee was the most recent 23rd overall pick by the Bills.
The 2016 NFL draft is 23 days away. Who have the Buffalo Bills drafted at pick 23?
Buffalo has drafted three players at pick 23. Here’s a look at the former Bills draft picks.
Willis McGahee, RB, Miami (2003)
Buffalo made a big splash in the 2003 draft when they selected Willis McGahee. The running back sat out the 2003 season due to injury, but in 2004 he showed why Buffalo was willing to draft him in the first round. McGahee’s first season on the field saw him rush for 1,128 yards and 13 touchdowns on 284 carries. His second season with Buffalo saw him increase his yardage to 1,247 yards, but his yards per carry dropped to 3.8 yards. The running back played one more season in Buffalo and gained 990 yards on the ground.
McGahee was productive on the field, but didn’t exactly endear himself to the fans of Buffalo. Here’s a few snippets of what McGahee said about his time with the Bills.
"I've grown a whole lot," McGahee says. "It doesn't feel like it's been five years since college. Coming from Miami, I was used to partying, going out, just having something to do every night. Restaurants, whatever. Going to Buffalo, it was like hitting a brick wall. Like, `Damn!' Can't go out, can't do nothing. There's an Applebee's, a TGI Friday's, and they just got a Dave & Busters. They got that, and I'm like, `What the?' And, you know, the women ...”
"You see, when I was in college that's what I used to thrive off of," the 25-year-old says. "The better you do, the more fame you get. So you know, it was like, I was used to that. And then you get to Buffalo and no matter how you do, it's the same. It's no big city. You know what I did every day? I came home and played video games."
On his trade to the Ravens via the Baltimore Sun:
"I couldn't wait to get out of there (Buffalo)," the running back said. Less than three months later, McGahee was dealt to the Ravens. "I was yelling and [stuff], running through the whole house, screaming, `Yes! Yes!'" he says. "It was such a relief."
McGahee would go on to make a Pro Bowl appearance with the Ravens in 2007. He played four seasons in Baltimore and rushed for 2,802 yards, but his production dropped every year. In 2011, McGahee would join the Broncos and make the Pro Bowl after rushing for 1,199 yards and four touchdowns. He played one more season with Denver before finishing his career with the Browns.
McGahee was a talented back, but his time in Buffalo isn’t fondly remembered. To Buffalo’s credit, the team sent the running back well wishes recently on Twitter.
Antoine Winfield, CB, Ohio State (1999)
Winfield played five seasons with the Bills. The cornerback recorded 58 starts in Buffalo and accounted for 328 tackles, six interceptions, 30 passes defensed, three forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries, and one sack.
The cornerback signed with the Vikings as a free agent in 2004 and remained with the team until 2012. From 2008-2010, Winfield was named to three consecutive Pro Bowls. He had 729 total tackles, 21 interceptions, two defensive touchdowns, 73 passes defensed, 11 forced fumbles, nine fumble recoveries, two fumble return touchdowns, and 6.5 sacks.
Winfield never made the Pro Bowl with the Bills, but his talent on the field was obvious.
Antowain Smith, RB, Houston (1997)
Smith played four seasons with the Bills and his best season came in 1998. That season, Smith rushed for 1,124 yards and eight touchdowns. In 57 games (28 starts), Smith rushed the ball 760 times for 2,932 yards and 26 touchdowns.
After his stint in Buffalo, Smith played with the New England Patriots. During his first season in New England, Smith ran for a career-high 1,157 yards and 12 touchdowns. He won two Super Bowls with the Patriots and rushed for a total of 2,781 yards in three seasons.
Smith also played one season with the Titans and one year with the Saints.