With the Buffalo Bills potentially losing four offensive linesmen to free agency (Bobby Hart doesn’t count), an already thin position group for the Bills will become virtually non-existent. Beefing up during the draft isn’t a bad idea, so I present Jarrett Patterson (the offensive linesman not the running back).
Weight: 307 lbs
Wingspan: 77 5/8”
Patterson started his career with the Fighting Irish as a tackle before moving to his position of starting centre. He held this spot for three seasons before making the transition to guard in his senior year. This versatility is always a benefit, especially with injuries.
As a pass blocker, Patterson uses his height and build to generate excellent balance and leverage of which he rarely ever loses. His quick hands, wingspan, and high football IQ means he is able to switch between multiple rushers almost seamlessly. This is a benefit for Josh Allen, as Patterson is able to give the QB more than enough time in the pocket.
As a run blocker, the strength which Patterson possess allows him to carry a rusher up the field creating good space. For the Bills, this is paramount. The OL failed on multiple occasions to develop good running lanes for their backs. Oftentimes, the RBs had to fight their way past the line of scrimmage.
The biggest downside to Patterson is his limited athleticism. Whilst having quick reflexes, his lateral movement is a little slow. There have been times when a bigger defensive linesman has been able to gain a step on Patterson, almost bypassing him to the QB. Luckily, his wingspan has limited the damage it could cause, but he may not be so lucky on the big stage.
This also affects his ability when asked to play in space. His lack of speed and agility really shows. That’s not great with a mobile QB such as Allen.
So, why does Jarrett Patterson belong on the Buffalo Bills?
Patterson’s limited athletic prowess is his only drawback. For the Bills, he possess just enough athleticism to still be valuable, not to mention his technique and unparalleled intelligence. His versatility to play across the line is also a huge advantage, especially with the Bills being so unlucky in the injury department. Buffalo could benefit from having a guy like him on the line.
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