Bills' Whaley: TE trending to guys like Ebron
If you read most that is written by NFL reporters and draft analysts, the consensus is that the Bills might be targeting an offensive tackle with the ninth overall selection in 2014. Coming in a close second to tackle is tight end, and more notably one man in particular, North Carolina's Eric Ebron.
Ebron is widely considered to be the top prospect available at tight end in the 2014 NFL Draft with a good amount of separation between him and the next best. Because of both the perceived need and want, Bills GM Doug Whaley was asked about Ebron during his appearance on WGR Friday morning.
Asked about the player that Ebron is, Whaley was quite complimentary of the highly rated tight end.
"I think Ebron's a guy that the tight end position is trending toward in the NFL," he said. "Athletic guy that can make plays in space."
Quickly after the extremely flattering opening two sentences about Ebron and before fans started putting two-and-two together, he brought up the faith in players already on their roster. And to effectively try to put out the Ebron fire, Whaley threw a bucket of water on it in the form of Tony Moeaki.
"We're excited with the guys we have on the roster now at tight end. We think with Tony Moeaki, we might have the guy that has the ability to get down and stretch the field," he said. "If you look at what he did against us when he was healthy at Kansas City, he put up some impressive numbers."
The collective groan from those clamoring for a player at tight end like Ebron with the ninth overall pick could start to be heard. Whaley then completed the compliment sandwich and left the door open for selecting the North Carolina product on May 8.
All in the same sentence, though, the GM then elected to use a popular refrain in most NFL cities this time of year.
"That would not preclude us from looking at a guy like Eric Ebron, and we're open to anybody that we think can help us get to our stated goal of the playoffs," Whaley remarked.
His thoughts on Whaley raised two big questions: Are the Bills really invested in the progress of Moeaki as the athletic tight end they desire, despite his injury history and short-term contract in Buffalo (only signed through 2014)? Or, is this the classic undersell this close to the draft, which actually means the Bills are interested in making Ebron the next member of their franchise?
You make the call. The draft at it's finest, folks.
**Photo courtesy of the AP