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Nix wants a starter with the No. 3 pick

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Posted April 15, 2011 @ 3:15 p.m. ET
By Kevin Fishbain

Like many GMs, Buddy Nix is no stranger to using a smokescreen when discussing the draft. His Bills hold the No. 3 pick. While there is much uncertainty about who will land in Buffalo, and Nix won't tip his hand, he did say on ESPN's "NFL Live" this week that he wants the player drafted third overall to be a starter for the Bills.

Now, this can mean a few things. The team could believe that Auburn QB Cam Newton has the ability to come in and win a battle with Ryan Fitzpatrick to be the team's starting signalcaller.

Then there are the top defensive players — Alabama DT Marcell Dareus, Texas A&M OLB Von Miller and LSU CB Patrick Peterson. While the Bills' strength on defense lies in the secondary, Peterson is thought to be the best NFL prospect in the draft. Nix also mentioned the team's ranking of 27th when it came to bringing down opposing quarterbacks last season. Many have pegged Miller, thought to be the draft's best pass rusher, to Buffalo for a while now. The Bills were last against the run, something Dareus can plug in and help improve.

If you are to take Nix on his word that the team wants to select a starter, Miller and Dareus make a lot of sense, as opposed to grooming Newton. There's a better chance of a defensive rookie starting Day One for the Bills than Newton. The Bills' staff worked with Miller at the Senior Bowl and Gailey mentioned how that gives his staff an advantage in getting to know a player's personality as well as his abilities on the field.

One daily team observer noted how secretive the Bills can be about the draft, but still considered Nix's statement more reason to think Newton will not end up in Buffalo, especially considering the public confidence that Nix and head coach Chan Gailey have put behind Fitzpatrick this offseason. For now, Miller continues to look like the best option with the lowest risk who can fit what the team needs.

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