AFC East Notes: Bills, Jets, Patriots

     

Bills

Buffalo QB Josh Allen held a conference call with reporters on Friday and mentioned that after the team acquired WR Stefon Diggs, this is going to be an important year for the team going forward.

“I understand how big of a year it is,” Allen said via Vic Carucci. “But I’m taking it one day at a time and I’m just trying to do my part to be the best that I can be for the Buffalo Bills.”

Allen called the addition of Diggs a “huge, huge boost” for the Bills’ offense and the team as a whole.

“Even just going against our guys in practice, it’s going to make the guys on defense that much better as well,” Allen said. “But the fact that he’s one of the best route runners in the league, he makes these unbelievable contested catches, the run after catch ability that he has when he’s got the ball in his hands, I mean, it’s pretty remarkable. To have a weapon like that, it makes me super happy and it should make our other guys super happy, too, just because that attention’s going to have to be elsewhere.”

Allen believes receivers John Brown and Cole Beasley shouldn’t worry about Diggs taking over as the Bills’ No. 1 receiver and pushing them to lower spots on the depth chart.

“It’s going to open up some things in our offense,” Allen said. “Now, if teams want to try to double team Stefon, it’ll open up other things. I think people are thinking it’s going to take away from what John and Cole are going to be able to do. But I think the opposite. I think it’s going to be that much more opportunity for them, in a sense. Adding a guy like him, I mean, we’re going to have to find ways to allow the ball to get into our playmakers’ hands, whatever happens. So I’m excited. It’s not added pressure in my mind. I think it’s going to make things actually a little easier, just because the guys that we have making plays, and what they can do with the ball in their hands.”

Jets

Manish Mehta of NY Daily News says that newly signed WR Breshad Perriman is hoping to have a big season with the Jets under OC Adam Gase.

“I believe it’s going to happen now,” Perriman said on a Friday conference call introducing his arrival to the Jets. “I have no doubt in my mind that it’s definitely going to be a season to remember for me… production-wise. I’m just really excited for the opportunities that I will get and [having] a bigger role.”

  • Brian Costello of the New York Post believes the Jets could capitalize on the draft by selecting a tackle in the first round, and selecting a receiver from this year’s deep class on day two or three such as Notre Dame’s Chase Claypool, USC’s Michael Pittman, Arizona State’s Brandon Aiyuk and Colorado’s Laviska Shenault.
  • Costello says that regardless of when they decide to draft a receiver, the team is in need of a playmaker to pair with QB Sam Darnold.

Patriots

  • Doug Kyed of NESN thinks that the Patriots will likely draft a quarterback in April after releasing veteran QB Cody Kessler.
  • Kyed mentions another option would be for the team to sign a veteran such as Cam Newton, Jameis Winston or Blake Bortles. They could also complete a trade for a quarterback such as Andy Dalton.
  • According to Kyed, Utah State QB Jordan Love might be off the board by the time the Patriots make their selection at No. 23. Kyed doesn’t consider Love to be a definitive upgrade over current Patriots QB Jarrett Stidham.
  • Washington QB Jacob Eason, Georgia QB Jake Fromm and Oklahoma QB Jalen Hurts are other intriguing draft options for the team. Kyed notes that Eason has the biggest arm and most upside, Fromm would be the safest pick and Hurts is the most athletic and versatile option.
  • Kyed believes that Hurts would make the most sense for the Patriots, as he could create a change of pace, even if that meant coming off the bench. Later round options for New England could also include Anthony Gordon, Jake Luton or Nate Stanley.
  • Tight end is a position that is in dire need of an upgrade following the retirement of TE Ben Watson. Kyed says that if he were in charge, he would attempt to draft two tight ends at separate points in the draft, in order to securely upgrade the position for 2020.
  • New England could first draft Notre Dame TE Cole Kmet, Washington TE Hunter Bryant or Dayton TE Adam Trautman and then later draft another tight end such as Missouri TE Albert Okweugbunam, LSU TE Thaddeus Moss, UCLA TE Devin Asiasi, or Virginia Tech TE Dalton Keene to create a strong pairing at the position, according to Kyed.
  • If the Patriots were to trade any player for cap space or draft picks, Kyed notes that LG Joe Thuney, who received the franchise tag, is the top candidate with a $14.781 million cap hit.
  • Kyed also notes that there are three fullbacks currently on the Patriots roster, as the team recently signed FB Danny Vitale, and still has FB James Develin and FB Jakob Johnson under contract.
  • After releasing K Stephen Gostkowski this offseason, Kyed believes the Patriots will have a rookie kicker next season, and that it will either be K Rodrigo Blankenship or K Taylor Bass.
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