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3 RBs the Bills Could Target Early in 2021 NFL Draft

Max Staley
3 RBs the Buffalo Bills can target early in the 2021 NFL Draft.
3 RBs the Buffalo Bills can target early in the 2021 NFL Draft. / Timothy T Ludwig/Getty Images
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The Buffalo Bills are shaping up to be legitimate contenders once again in 2021. With a roster that's loaded at pretty much every key position, general manager Brandon Beane doesn't have much work to do this offseason.

But needless to say, he's not exactly satisfied quite yet. Beane revealed that he feels this backfield could stand to add a "home-run hitter" in the 2021 NFL Draft.

With that in mind, here are three explosive backs Buffalo could target in the 2021 NFL Draft.

3. Travis Etienne, Clemson Tigers

Of all the backs available in this class, Clemson's Travis Etienne is probably the most explosive. The 205-pound RB showcased his speed by running a 4.41 40-yard dash at his pro day, and that backs up what we saw on the field. He generated 15 carries of 15-plus yards and forced 44 missed tackles in 2020, ranking inside the top 15 in the country in both regards. Etienne is also a force in the passing game, averaging 2.26 yards per route run last year, which was the third-best mark in the country. He's a home-run hitter as both a runner and a receiver, making him a perfect fit for Buffalo. He's probably not going to be there in the second round, though, so the Bills would likely have to spend a first-round pick on the Clemson standout.

2. Kenneth Gainwell, Memphis Tigers

Kenneth Gainwell wouldn't cost nearly as much as Etienne, but he's a similarly explosive player. The aptly named Gainwell generated 2,069 yards from scrimmage on a whopping 282 touches back in 2019. He's a serious threat as a receiver, which is an element this backfield could really use. Gainwell opted out of the 2020 season, which could hurt his draft stock, but that could make him a steal for Buffalo.

1. Javonte Williams, North Carolina Tar Heels

Javonte Williams might not have the straight-line speed that Etienne does, but he's one of the most dynamic backs in the country. No one forced more missed tackles than Williams did last season (76). That's particularly impressive considering he was splitting carries with Michael Carter, recording only 157 attempts. Williams also had 27 carries of 15-plus yards (No. 2 in the country) and generated 720 yards after contact (No. 5). He brings the explosive element that Beane is looking to add to this backfield.


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Max Staley is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Max Staley also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username mstaley1212. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.

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