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Bills Daily 2008 Draft Board

Here is the Bills draft board for the class of 2008. The links in each player's name takes you to expert analysis about the player. Check out our player capsules for each of the Bills selections and our final grade!

Round Pick Overall Pos. Player College
  1  11   11 CB Leodis McKelvin Troy
  2  10   41 WR James Hardy Indiana
  3   9   72 DE Chris Ellis Virginia Tech
  4  15  114 CB Reggie Corner Akron
  4  33*  132 TE Derek Fine Kansas
  5  12  147 OLB Alvin Bowen Iowa St.
  6  13  179 RB Xavier Omon Northwest Missouri State
  7  12  219 OT Demetrius Bell Northwestern State
  7  17**  224 WR Steve Johnson Kentucky
  7  44*  251 CB Kennard Cox Pittsburgh

*-compensatory pick
**-acquired in a trade last offseason from Philadelphia for Kelly Holcomb.

Sent the 71st pick (3rd round) originally acquired from the Ravens and the 143rd pick (5th round) originally acquired from the Bears to the Jaguars for Marcus Stroud.


1) CB Leodis McKelvin Troy 5-10¼, 190, 4.379 - McKelvin was considered the top corner in the draft and was the first taken. It appears the Bills got great value for this pick. McKelvin has very quick feet and leverage. He has great leaping ability. His one weakness appears to be that he isn't a ball hawk but he does break up many passes. He also isn't considered a top run stopper. McKelvin should step right in and play the slot in the nickel package while working his way into the starting lineup quickly. He may also take over the kick return duties for Terrence McGee who shouldn't be doing it as the top corner.

2) WR James Hardy Indiana 6-6, 217, 4.49 - Hardy is a tall receiver with a great reach. Gets open quickly and has good speed for his tremendous size. Can take a hit and has good hands. His size allows him to shield defensive backs from the ball. Needs to work on his route running abilities and may have trouble separating from top corners at this level. Hardy will step right in to help the red zone defense. He scored 36 touchdowns in three seasons and should be great for jump balls in the end zone. Likely a starter early in the season if not on opening day.

3) DE Chris Ellis Virginia Tech 6-4¼, 263, 4.71 - Is considered a solid pass rusher who gets a great jump off the snap. Has good speed but may not be physical enough to become a solid run stopper. Will only be used this year as a situational pass rusher in the back end of the defensive end rotation. May eventually develop into an every down player but that is down the line.

4) CB Reggie Corner Akron 5-9, 181, 4.45 - Corner is very undersized for a corner but does make up for it some with a great leaping ability. He has good recognition and has a good closing burst to cover a lot of ground. Not strong enough to be real good in run support but had good tackling technique. He's likely a project player who will battle Ashton Youboty for the last cornerback spot.

4) TE Derek Fine Kansas 6-3, 251, 4.849 - He's quick off the ball and gets out in his pattern very nicely and can shield receivers from the ball. He's an effective lead blocker from the backfield. Sound blocking technique. Doesn't have great speed so won't be the stretch the field type of tight end the Bills were looking for. Fine is considered more of an H-back but the team thinks he will be a hand in the ground tight end. He is expected to help out immediately on special teams.

5) OLB Alvin Bowen Iowa St. 6-1, 223, 4.79 - Bowen is a small linebacker but does a good job in getting to the ball carrier quickly to make many tackles. Good at causing fumbles. Not big enough to have enough strength at this level and may project at strong safety. Has a good burst but not great speed. The Bills will groom him as a backup this year but don't be surprised if they give him a look at safety as well.

6) RB Xavier Omon 5-10¾, 228, 4.62 - Led Division II in rushing and touchdowns this past year. Was very productive at a lower level with four straight 1,500 yard seasons. Omon is a thick, well built physical back who will grind out the extra yards. Decent pass receiver. Doesn't have breakaway speed and needs to work on his pass protection. With Anthony Thomas gone the team needed another back to battle with last year's 4th round pick Dwayne Wright for the third string job. May end up on the practice squad.

7) OT Demetrius Bell Northwestern State 6-5, 303, 5.25 - Has lots of talent and athletic ability but needs to add bulk and strength. He does have the potential to add that and appears to have a chance to develop if coached properly. Definitely a possible practice squad player as he is very raw. A good training camp may have him make the team as the fourth tackle.

7) WR Steve Johnson Kentucky 6-2, 210, 4.589 - Has good top end speed and good size which was still needed for the team despite the pick of James Hardy in the 2nd round. Can stretch the field but needs more bulk since he isn't a very physical player. Needs to work on his route running. Very raw player who likely will end up on the practice squad.

7) CB Kennard Cox Pittsburgh 6-0, 192, 4.549 - A corner with good size but not top end speed. May project to a safety in the pros. Not a good cover guy but is a physical guy that is solid in run support. Likely will have to make the team by playing good special teams and may be groomed as a safety.

As always we will preface our grade with saying they really don't mean anything. It takes a good two to three years before you can really grade a draft. The bottom line on paper is the Bills had an amazing first day of the draft. Leodis McKelvin fell to the Bills at the 11th spot and was the first cornerback taken. The team was very happy he was there. He should step right in to the starting lineup and take some return pressure off of Terrence McGee and Roscoe Parrish. The gamble with taking McKelvin was not taking a tall wide receiver in the first round. Things fell for the Bills again as they didn't need to trade back up after no receivers went in the first round. They had their choice of James Hardy, Limas Sweed, and Malcolm Kelly at the 41st pick in the draft and chose the tallest wide receiver ever drafted by the Bills in Hardy. He will have an immediate impact in the red zone at the very latest and probably start from day one. On the second day of the draft the Bills chose many projects from small schools that have potential but some were reaches and that brings the grade down a bit. Chris Ellis looks like a good situational pass rusher but has been known to have an attitude problem in the past. He will have time to groom. An intriguing pick is RB Xavier Omon as he dominated the division II level but it is a huge jump to the NFL. Of course, Fred Jackson has made the move from division III nicely. WR Steve Johnson may be a steal in the 7th round. Derek Fine isn't the pass catching tight end threat they were looking for, he's a lot like Robert Royal. LB Alvin Bowen could help on special teams. 7th rounders Demetrius Bell and Kennard Cox will likely end up on the practice squad at best. Grade: B-.

Bills Daily Draft Featured Articles
Our Complete Draft Analysis
1st Round Mock Draft
Bills Daily Draft Preview Article
2008 Draft Preview - A funny look at draft weekend.
Our Bills Seven Round Mock Draft

NFL Draft Scout
Draft Tex Draft Services
NFL Draft Countdown
The Red Zone
About NFL Draft Coverage - A listing of many draft sites.
ESPN's NFL Draft Central -'s site for draft day. Draft Coverage - The league's official site including their draft tracker.
CBS Sportsline Draft Coverage - Includes their draft tracker.
NFL Experts
Pro Football Weekly
NFL Draft Blitz - Draft page.
Football's Future Draft Coverage
Great Blue North Report

2007 Bills Daily Draft Page
2006 Bills Daily Draft Page
2005 Bills Daily Draft Page
2004 Bills Daily Draft Page
2003 Bills Daily Draft Page
2002 Bills Daily Draft Page
2001 Bills Daily Draft Page
2000 Bills Daily Draft Page
1999 Bills Daily Draft Page


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