Jerry Hughes EDGE, Buffalo Bills
Did you know that 87 edge rushers had 200 or more pass rush snaps in 2018? Out of all of those players, new Tennessee Titans EDGE Cam Wake was 2nd in PFF’s pass rush productivity rankings.
That metric basically does just what it sounds like, it takes the total number of pressures (sacks+hits+hurries) and then divides that by the total number of pass rush snaps to find how frequently those EDGEs effect the QB.
If you have seen the title of this slide then you probably have guessed that if Cam Wake was second, that the one that ranked higher than he did was the titular Jerry Hughes.
Both of those players are the only EDGE to disrupt the QB on 10% or more of their snaps with such a large sample size, but no one really thinks about them too much because year in and year out the New England Patriots with the AFC East and make the playoffs.
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If you could get them both in Tennessee you could focus on drafting offensive talent to help Marcus Mariota in the first few rounds and know that even if you don’t add another pass rusher you have four players (Harold Landry, Wake, Hughes, and Casey) that are capable of ruining a QB’s day.
The Buffalo Bills have the money to spend to keep him, but they aren’t going to be able to maximize his value. Josh Allen is fine, but he probably needs an outstanding group of offensive weapons to make him play like a franchise QB.
This year the Bills focused on the offensive line and could potentially do so in the draft. Next year, go after some top weapons at receiver, running back and tight end. Then once the offense is complete and your QB is comfortable start working on the defense.
At that point, I don’t know that 34 year old Jerry Hughes will be part of the long term plan if he even re-signs with them after this year. As much as it pains Bills fans to admit, your goal should be to build a team that can win the division once Tom Brady retires. To do that, you may have to get rid of some good players a year or two early to make sure that your young talent is mature and experienced when that time comes.