The Bills operated aggressively in an effort to bolster their pass rush in the draft, taking defensive ends with each of their first two picks. The second of those selections, Carlos Basham Jr., signed his rookie contract Wednesday.
The 6-foot-3, 274-pound pass rusher registered 10 sacks as a junior in 2019. Between his sophomore and junior seasons, the emerging Demon Deacons sack artist totaled 29 tackles for loss. Basham played in just six games last season, recording five sacks. Scouts Inc. graded Basham as the 43rd overall prospect — five spots ahead of Rousseau. The Bills drafted Basham at No. 61.
Last season, the Bills finished with just 38 sacks. No Buffalo rusher totaled more than five. The team still has thirtysomething starters Jerry Hughes and Mario Addison, but three first- or second-round picks over the past two years will be groomed to take over in the near future.
Buffalo drafted Iowa’s A.J. Epenesa in the 2020 second round and now will have two new coveted prospects set to help the cause. Hughes and Addison are set to be free agents in 2022. Addison adjusted his three-year contract in March, converting it into a two-year deal.
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