Coming in to the 2012 standard season, Buffalo Bills followers were salivating over the likely in excess of a Bills defense that had undergone radical adjust - not only during an fascinating off-season, but over the three-year run of GM Buddy Nix.
These days, Buffalo's beginning lineup on defense functions five Nix draft picks, the $115.five million in defensive ends the group signed while in the spring months, and four former first-round draft picks. Expectations had been superior practically by necessity, nevertheless it was definitely justified - there is an terrible lot of athletic talent on the area. Add in a switch back to a player-friendly 4-3 scheme, propagated by new coordinator Dave Wannstedt - and every little thing felt like it was coming together smoothly.
Naturally, the fact that the Bills arguably possess the worst defense within the NFL with the moment - from the encounter of all of that talent and also the accompanying hype - has led to possibly the biggest collective disappointment during the latest history from the organization. Our question for you: which player or spot is the biggest letdown to suit your needs?
The pass rush. To be fair, the pass rush is enhanced from 2011; the Bills have 17 sacks suitable now, placing them on pace to surpass the 28 sacks they had a year ago. Plus, final year's sack leader, Marcell Dareus, had five.five sacks; Kyle Williams by now has four.five, and it is most likely to obliterate that mark and maybe put up the Bills' highest single-season sack complete due to the fact Aaron Schobel had 10 in 2009. Even however, the pass rush hasn't been as regularly dominant as it was expected to be.
Mario Williams. Ah yes, the $96 million man with 3.five sacks in 7 video games. Williams has not only been a buzz kill to the field, he's exacerbated that start by alienating himself with followers, mostly by producing comments to reporters (notably about receiving punched during the encounter in Week one, along with his wrist injury) that sound an awful good deal like generating excuses.
The defensive line. The contracts of Buffalo's 4 defensive line starters are worth a mixed $174.9 million. Nix has famously said that the unit reliably goes two-deep across the board. These four gamers have mixed for 11 of Buffalo's 17 sacks this season. Nevertheless the defensive line has been banged up virtually to a man, all but Kyle Williams happen to be inconsistent to varying degrees, and it may be quickly argued the crew has not however gotten its money's worth.
The run defense. Nix also famously advised reporters during training camp that followers could be astonished at how very well the Bills' new defensive ends would perform the run. The concept was the Bills could be much better at setting the edge with these ends plus the switch to your 4-3, and also the team drafted linebackers and cornerbacks that may play the run, also. The result? Buffalo has, by far, the worst run defense during the NFL appropriate now, and they're providing up virtually 40 far more yards per game than they surrendered in 2011.
Nick Barnett. As being the only linebacker to the team that plays greater than just a part of snaps, there is a lot riding on Barnett; we talked that fact up repeatedly more than the summer season. Barnett is currently second within the team with 37 tackles and has additional one.5 sacks. Still the player that had a Pro Bowl caliber stat line in 2011 has far more frequently been swallowed up or from position this season, and appears to possess regressed switching to an outside linebacker purpose during the 4-3.
The young cornerbacks. Stephon Gilmore, this year's first-round select, may be the only cornerback that is definitely genuinely an every-down player. He's taken his lumps, but has grown extra dependable because the year has progressed - although he's in need to have of important enhancements towards the run. Past Gilmore, who might be shaky sometimes, two extra Nix draft picks - Aaron Williams and Justin Rogers - are monumental disappointments regardless of not taking part in a ton as compared to Gilmore. The two have verified to become remarkably vulnerable to obtaining torched. It has not assisted that other corners have failed to spell individuals younger gamers for a single cause or one more.
George Wilson. We desired to pick on 1 player from each degree on the defense, and Wilson will get our vote within the secondary. One of many team's greater playmakers last yr, Wilson has not flashed in that spot in 2012; in actual fact, he dropped an interception final week that may have allowed Buffalo to beat Tennessee. Wilson currently leads the group in tackles, but is not the difference-maker that he was in 2011, his initially yr like a full-time starter.
Dave Wannstedt. Chan Gailey promoted Wannstedt to the publish of defensive coordinator incredibly quickly immediately after the 2011 season concluded, and it straight away became apparent that the team would be switching to a supposedly player-friendly 4-3 scheme. Nix gave Wannstedt talent to function with inside of the confines of that scheme. Today, players are ardently defending the scheme and the coach, but on the weekly basis, the team looks delicate, slow and unprepared on that side of your ball. Nonetheless you wish to paint it, Wannstedt has finished a rather horrible job this season.
Lots to decide on from here. Have at it in the feedback.