Assistant General Manager Doug Whaley understands the thought process necessary to evaluate the right players to fit into the 53-man roster for the Buffalo Bills, Ryan Talbot, featured columnist for Bleacher Report reported on Feb. 19.
Doug Whaley, in an interview with John Murphy, the official announcer for the Buffalo Bills, made it clear that the Bills draft process is 80 percent tape, 10 percent All-Star Games and 10 percent NFL Combine.
The NFL Combine begins on Saturday, Feb. 23 and the Buffalo Bills scouting personnel will study every player, but the focus may be on quarterbacks, wide receivers, tight ends, offensive guards and linebackers. Based on these needs, the Buffalo Bills will may pay close attention to two specific prospects at the tight end position.
Vance McDonald, Rice University: as a player, McDonald is intriguing. Standing 6’5” Vance McDonald is a large target who is good in space. McDonald has long arms and that can be a nightmare to cover for opposing defenses.
It is no secret that Buffalo Bills need a young tight end. The Bills current tight end Scott Chandler chalked up 43 receptions, 571 yards and six touchdowns in the 2012 season. However, Chandler tore his ACL in late-December against the Miami Dolphins.
The Bills have too many needs to be able to score higher rated tight ends such as Tyler Eifert, Zach Ertz or Jordan Reed. However the next tier of tight ends has plenty of talent, and that is where Vance McDonald comes in. McDonald can often play out of the slot due to his athleticism, which gives him plenty of potential in the NFL.
Travis Kelce, University of Cincinnati: Kelce is athletic, strong and hard to bring down. He is a great receiving tight end, as well as a strong blocker. Travis Kelce, 6’6” and 260 pounds has the ideal body for a tight end.
The downside to Kelce is that his senior season is his only statistically notable season. In his freshman and junior years, Travis Kelce had a total of 14 receptions for 153 yards and two touchdowns. Kelce had to sit out his sophomore season in 2010 due to a suspension for an undisclosed violation of team rules.
Travis Kelce ceiling is extremely high as an NFL prospect, and the Buffalo Bills will monitor him closely at the NFL Combine in order to get a feel for what his value may be for the Bills organization.