ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (WIVB) — Brandon Beane built a deep and talented roster and now he’ll have to decide who stays and who goes. The Bills GM and coaching staff will have some tough decisions to make this Saturday when rosters must be chopped to 53.
Here’s my roster projection:
Josh Allen, Matt Barkley
Cut: Jake Fromm, Davis Webb
Note: No real surprise here. The Bills spent a 5th round pick on Jake Fromm so I’m certain they’ll do what they can to get him back on the practice squad.
Running Backs (5)
Devin Singletary, Zack Moss, T.J. Yeldon, Taiwan Jones, Patrick DiMarco
**DiMarco on IR**
Cut: Antonio Williams
Christian Wade(roster exemption)
Note: Patrick DiMarco hasn’t practiced this preseason due to a neck injury so I could see him starting the season on IR. If that’s the case, a roster spot opens up to bring back a player who just missed the cut.
Wide Receivers (6)
Stefon Diggs, John Brown, Cole Beasley, Gabriel Davis, Andre Roberts, Isaiah Hodgins
Cut: Isaiah McKenzie, Duke Williams, Robert Foster
Note: I went back and forth on whether to keep “Big Isaiah” or “Little Isaiah” on the roster and in the end… I believe they would regret exposing Hodgins to waivers.
Tight ends (3)
Dawson Knox, Tyler Kroft, Lee Smith
*Tommy Sweeney (PUP)
Cut: Jason Croom, Nate Becker, Reggie Gilliam
Note: The Bills switched Reggie Gilliam from fullback to tight end and I believe that if DiMarco starts on IR they will try to bring Gilliam back to play a TE/FB role… which he did in college.
Offensive lineman (10)
Dion Dawkins, Quinton Spain, Mitch Morse, Cody Ford, Daryl Williams
Ty Nsekhe, Ryan Bates, Jon Feliciano, Brian Winters, Evan Boehm
Cut: Ike Boettger, Trey Adams, Marquel Harrell, Victor Salako, Bandon Walton
Note: Brian Winters squeaks into one of the final roster spots. I believe the Bills will start the season with 10 offensive lineman but that could change the minute Jon Feliciano is healthy. Following surgery, Feliciano said he would be ready for the week 4 game against the Raiders.
Defensive lineman (8)
Jerry Hughes, Trent Murphy, Ed Oliver, Mario Addison, Vernon Butler
Harrison Phillips, Quintin Jefferson, A.J. Epenesa
Cut: Darryl Johnson, Mike Love, Vincent Taylor, Bryan Cox Jr., Tanzel Smart, Justin Zimmer
Note: The biggest name on the roster bubble is Trent Murphy. I know most of my peers believe the defensive end will be cut and saving money on the cap could be a motivating factor, I don’t believe the Bills will think that way. A.J. Epenesa doesn’t look ready yet and if one of the other defensive ends goes down they will be scrambling. The Bills believe they can make a deep postseason run right now so it’s an investment they can live with.
Tremaine Edmunds, Matt Milano, A.J. Klein, Vosean Joseph, Tyler Matakevich, Andre Smith
Cut: Corey Thompson, Del’Shawn Phillips, Tyrel Dodson
Note: The Bills traded for Andre Smith right before roster cuts so I have to believe he’s making the team. Smith is listed as a middle linebacker, that tells me they weren’t satisfied with what they had behind Tremaine Edmunds. I went with Vosean Joseph, who needs to stay healthy, but it wasn’t easy. I gave Joseph, a 5th round pick in 2019, the nod over Tyrel Dodson, a UDFA in ’19.
Tre’Davious White, Levi Wallace, Josh Norman, Taron Johnson, Cam Lewis
Cut: Dane Jackson, Brian Allen
Note: Hamstring injuries have been an issue for Josh Norman and Levi Wallace this preseason, I think Cam Lewis benefits from those injury concerns. Lewis outplayed rookie Dane Jackson during camp and has the ability to play inside and outside.
Micah Hyde, Jordan Poyer, Siran Neal, Dean Marlowe, Jaquan Johnson
Cut: Josh Thomas
Note: This was the easiest group to project. Hyde and Poyer are a great duo, Neal is the big nickel, Marlowe is a solid backup, and Johnson is the young guy they hope to groom.
Tyler Bass, Corey Bojorquez, Reid Ferguson
Note: The Bills already took the suspense out of this group.