There’s a couple of reasons the Buffalo Bills’ linebackers were only ranked in the middle-of-the-pack by Pro Football Focus. The biggest reason was undoubtedly some hate for Tremaine Edmunds.
Overall, the football analytics outlet said the Bills have the 14th-best linebacking group in the NFL. Most of PFF’s analysis had to do with essentially calling Edmunds overrated.
Here’s PFF’s breakdown:
14. BUFFALO BILLS
The Bills would be much higher than this on name recognition, but Tremaine Edmunds has been more hype than overall production thus far. His highlights are spectacular, but so are his lowlights, and he has yet to finish a season with a PFF grade higher than 60.0. He’s also missed 57 tackles in three seasons. Matt Milano has been much better, giving up just two touchdowns in coverage in two seasons. A.J Klein played over 600 snaps last season as Milano dealt with injury, but he recorded only a 46.1 overall PFF grade.
Just a huge, overall… ooof.
As it’s essentially admitted by the outlet itself, PFF is very tough on Edmunds. He isn’t perfect, but Edmunds is a better player than he’s given credit for.
But even in that, there’s promise. Edmunds had the fifth-year option on his rookie contract picked up by the Bills. Eventually, it only seems like a matter of time before he gets a long-term extension.
Regardless of when that deal comes… Edmunds is still extremely young.
Despite being selected in the first round of the 2018 NFL draft, the most-recent draft by the Bills actually involved multiple players selected by Buffalo that are still older than him. Plenty of time for improvement.
While PFF potentially misses the mark on Edmunds, it did on the entire Bills’ linebacker room as well. AJ Klein realistically does not need to factor into this discussion much.
Buffalo head coach Sean McDermott runs a nickel-based defense. That means each week, when healthy, it’s only Edmunds and Milano seeing 100 percent of snaps on defense. Klein might see a handful, but if PFF is grading starting linebacker “cores,” for the Bills, it’s only really Edmunds and Milano that need to be factored in, which alone could vault this duo into a top-10 status.