The Buffalo Bills fell short of the Super Bowl in 2020, but not by much. They won the AFC East and made it to the AFC Championship Game before getting out-dueled by the reigning champion Kansas City Chiefs.
The future is as bright as it’s ever been in Buffalo, and Bills Mafia is buzzing with excitement due to the development of Josh Allen and the great coaching by Sean McDermott.
The Bills fought hard with the Chiefs, but it’s a tough task for any team to take down Patrick Mahomes and that talented Kansas City squad. Despite the loss, the Bills have a lot to look forward to, with their eyes focused on a Super Bowl.
They have some roster decisions to make just like any team in the league. Who are three free agents the Bills could target in the offseason?
3. RB Aaron Jones
The tandem of Zack Moss and Devin Singletary was disappointing, to say the least. After the injury of Moss, offensive coordinator Brian Daboll seemed reluctant to run the ball with Singletary and TJ Yeldon as the options out of the backfield.
The Bills might need to address the running back position, and Jones is the best of the bunch by far. While his price might be high, Buffalo wants to compete, and adding a top-tier back like Jones would be beneficial to Allen and the Bills’ offense.
Jones had the best year of his career, and questions remain on whether Green Bay shells out the money to keep him in Wisconsin or not. He finished 2020 with a career-high 1,104 yards and adding nine touchdowns and has improved as a pass-catcher every year.
Running backs averaging more yards per route run when lined up in the slot or out wide than Aaron Jones since 2017 (PFF):
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— Ian Hartitz (@Ihartitz) January 21, 2021
The former fifth-round pick has exceeded expectations in the league so far after many questioned his talent during his tenure at UTEP. Nonetheless, Jones can run the football and is a dynamic player out of the backfield—something Buffalo would love to add to the Allen and Stefon Diggs pairing.
— Justin Groc (@jgroc) January 24, 2021
The price will be high, but the result will be worth it and make this dangerous Bills offense that much better as they aim to topple the Chiefs and make a trip to the Super Bowl for the first time in nearly 30 years.
2. TE Jonnu Smith
If the Bills want to stay competitive in the AFC they must improve their offense to outscore teams like the Chiefs going forward. With that being said, Smith to the Bills would a perfect fit.
The current tight end Dawson Knox isn’t bad by any means, but it’s not the difference-maker that Allen would want to throw the ball to. Although Knox came on towards the end of the year, he finished with only 288 yards on 24 catches, so the need for a decent tight end is evident in Buffalo.
Smith might be on his way out of Tennessee especially with the emergence of Anthony Firkser, so a trip to Buffalo would be tempting for Jonnu who wants to make a Super Bowl appearance.
It seems that Smith had a bit of a down year in 2020, but then again Derrick Henry ran for 2,000 yards and led the Titans offense. The Titans tight end had 448 yards on 41 catches with eight touchdowns, and his numbers should go up on a team that doesn’t have the NFL leading rusher in the backfield.
#Titans capitalize on the turnover with a TD to Jonnu Smith!
— NFL (@NFL) October 14, 2020
He’s played 13 or more games in each of the four seasons and is only 25 years old, which is hard to believe.
Josh Allen would love another receiving option and a tight end that can also block to go alongside Knox and the rest of the potent Bills offense as they fight for a Super Bowl berth.
1. OT Daryl Williams
The Bills’ best free agency move would be to re-sign their stud offensive lineman and protect the face of the franchise in Allen.
While the Bills have their own free agency decisions with Matt Milano and others as well, Williams might be able to stay on at a cheaper price than the other linemen on the market in 2021.
The Bills line was subpar this year but ultimately did enough to protect Allen. While the running game struggled, that might help if they bring in a better rusher. Either way, signing a guy like Williams to a long-term deal would sure up the front line and protect Allen and allow him to do what he does best.
— z – BuffaLow Ceilings (@LowBuffa) December 19, 2020
The AFC has some of the best pass-rushers in the league and protecting Allen needs to be priority number one in the offseason.
It’s obvious how important a good offensive line is, just ask the New England Patriots. Brandon Scherff, Joe Thuney, and Trent Williams, among others, are set to hit the market this year, so the Bills might be able to re-sign their guy without paying a top-end price and allow them more financial flexibility going forward.