Buffalo Bills Draft picks
Round 1...#11... Aaron Maybin DE Penn State
6’ 4”, 246 lbs.
Strengths: Speed, Effort, Quickness, Athleticism
Weaknesses: Size, Technique, Beating Blockers
In what some consider to be a bit of a surprise, sophomore defensive sensation Aaron Maybin has chosen to forgo his final two seasons at Penn State and enter the 2009 NFL Draft. With that, Maybin has really only had one productive season to offer NFL scouts so there will be a lot of questions heading into offseason workouts with Maybin. Just how high will he go? How NFL ready is Maybin.
When you look at Maybin, what you see is a pass rusher who has a lot of quickness and a lot of explosion off the line. His first step is immense and he has the speed to make it past offensive lineman and get to the quarterback. Maybin can also change his direction well while he is pursing the play and can adjust to line up and go where he thinks that the play is going to go. Maybin is also a strong run defender who isn’t afraid to take on the run unlike some NFL defensive ends can be weak at.
In that, Maybin also has a great work ethic and room to grow which should be promising for any NFL team that decides to look at taking him. Watching tape of Maybin will reveal that the moves that he possesses make it hard for blockers to stay on him and keep their blocks because of the speed that he has and the moves that he puts on offensive linemen. With some additional coaching in the NFL, Maybin could be one of the best defensive linemen to come into the league in a long time. Some of the other interesting and positive aspects that Maybin can bring to an NFL team include the speed to pursue and make the play from the backside.
However, like every other player, Maybin does have a downside. What he lacks, first and foremost, is size. While he is taller he isn’t as heavy as some of the better defensive ends in the NFL. He may have a hard time against offensive tackles as a result of this playing the defensive end position. Another issue that relates to this is that he has a problem getting loose from offensive players in particular larger ones that can block him out of the play. Because of these issues, he may be a better fit at an outside linebacker position particularly in a 3-4 defense. He also needs to work on some moves to break free of blockers and get in to the open field to make the play.
While Maybin has some moves that are good enough to get him past blockers, a good offensive lineman, the kind that you see every day and on every snap in the NFL will keep him at bay and could render him ineffective. Along with that, as mentioned, Maybin is a little light and this will cause him to get overpowered by bigger and stronger offensive lineman. Adding weight and learning the finesse parts of the pass rushing game will help him out in the future.
Maybin played his high school ball at Mount Hebron High School in the Baltimore area. He was honored by being named to the 2005 Baltimore Sun All-Metro team. He was also named first team All-Howard County and a second team big school All-State Selection.
Maybin was named a finalist for the Hendricks and Bednarik Award this past season. He had a fantastic season which vaulted him into 1st round NFL Draft consideration. He finished 2008 ranked 6th in the NCAA with 12 sacks and 5th in tackles for loss with 20.
While Maybin did have a stellar combine he should still be able to turn a lot of heads thanks to his athletic ability and his flexibility. While he may be a little too light to play defensive end (full time) in the NFL, it does appear that he might make a fine outside linebacker in a 3-4 defense so his calling might come there. A team that he might be a good fit for could quite possibly be the New England Patriots or perhaps even the Denver Broncos with their new 3-4 defense. While he still has a lot to learn, Maybin still offers whoever will draft him a lot of promise and potential. Right now, he’s a first round talent who should be able to go somewhere at the bottom of the first round.
Round 1...#28 (from Eagles via Panthers)...Eric Wood, C, Louisville
Wood is the picture of durability. The unquestioned leader of the Cardinals' front wall, he finished his career with 49 consecutive starts at center, the second-longest streak in school history behind Travis Leffew (51, 2002-05). It was also the sixth-longest streak among active NCAA players last season, topped by Andrew Hartline of Central Michigan (51), Andrew Gardner of Georgia Tech (51), Jason Phillips of Texas Christian (50), Dallas Reynolds of Brigham Young (50) and Clint Sintim of Virginia (50).
Called by many the "most prepared player in the nation," Wood has been known to be found in the wee hours of the morning still examining game tapes in the film room, preparing for his upcoming opponent. He not only brings incredible knowledge and instincts to the field, but plays with the true nastiness that has scouts comparing him to the NFL's old time centers like Mike Webster of the Pittsburgh Steelers and Tim Grunhard of the Kansas City Chiefs.
Performing as his team's Iron Man is nothing new for Wood. He started every game in his final two seasons at Elder High School, as the team compiled a 28-2 record during that span. As a 15-game starter at offensive tackle, he guided the school to its second straight state title with a 31-7 win over St. Edward's High as a senior, picking up all-league first-team accolades.
As a junior, Wood started at both offensive guard and tackle, in addition to lining up at tight end, earning all-district honorable mention. He also earned a pair of letters playing on the basketball team, picking up all-league recognition during his final campaign.
Wood enrolled at Louisville in 2004, turning down scholarship offers from Bowling Green, Ohio University, Cincinnati, Indiana and Columbia. He spent that season performing on the scout team, but a stellar performance in 2005 spring drills earned him the starting center position, a job he would maintain throughout his playing career. He was a consensus Freshman All-American, adding Academic All-Big East Conference honors, as he delivered 85 knockdowns and had touchdown-resulting blocks on nine of the team's 41 scores on the ground.
As a sophomore, Wood received All-Big East Conference second-team recognition. He started all 13 games, registering 79 knockdowns to go with 10 touchdown-resulting blocks. He made all the line calls, as the offense ranked second in the country, averaging 475.31 yards per game. He also posted a pair of tackles.
In 2007, Wood led the nation's sixth-ranked offense, picking up All-Big East first-team honors. He collected 86 knockdowns and 11 touchdown-resulting blocks. He was one of the few bright spots on a turnover-prone offense, grading 83.25 percent for blocking consistency. He helped the team average 488.0 yards per game, but the Cardinals' running game was halted, placing 64th in the country (146.08 ypg) after finishing 12th the previous season (185.31 ypg).
For the second season in a row, Louisville failed to make the bowl season in 2008. Wood continued his stellar play, receiving third-team All-American and first-team All-Big East honors. The offense scored only 34 times, with Wood ranking second among the nation's centers with 16 touchdown-resulting blocks. He graded 87.08 percent for blocking consistency and made 78 knockdowns as the Cardinals averaged 376.67 yards per game. He also recorded an assisted tackle.
Attended Elder (Cincinnati, Ohio) High School...Started every game over the course of his final two seasons, as the team compiled a 28-2 record during that span...As a 15-game starter at offensive tackle, he guided the school to its second-straight state title with a 31-7 win over St. Edward's High as a senior, picking up All-League first-team accolades...As a junior, Wood started at both offensive guard and tackle, in addition to lining up at tight end, earning All-District honorable mention...Also earned a pair of letters playing on the basketball team, picking up All-League recognition during his final campaign.
Round 2...#42... Jarius Byrd CB Oregon
Round 2...#51 (acquired from Cowboys)... Andy Levitre OL Oregon State
Round 4...#121 (from Eagles)... Shawn Nelson TE Southern Miss
Round 5...#147... Nic Harris S Oklahoma
Round 6...#183... Cary Harris CB USC
Round 7...#220...Ellis Lankster CB WVU