The 5-foot-11, 196 pound Buffalo Bills’ first round draft pick, will be stepping straight into the number one running back role when the season begins this Sunday.
That decision to draft Spiller was met with some controversy from the Buffalo fans because they already had two fairly talented backs in Fred Jackson and Marshawn Lynch.
But head coach Chan Gailey says having three premier backs will only help his team.
“The great thing is at tailback we’ve got three starters,” Gailey told buffalobills.com. “Some people have trouble finding one and we have three.
“They’re all going to play, they’re all starters, they’re all going to be valuable members of our football team as the year goes on as I foresee it.”
Spiller played his college football at the University of Clemson where he had an outstanding senior year rushing for over 1,200 yards with a 5.9 yards per carry.
The speedy, shifty scatback has continued that strong play into his pre-season with the Bills. In three games, he has found the end zone three times, and has shown good burst on two of the touchdowns where he completed runs of over 15 yards.
Buffalo will be hoping to see more of that pre-season production from the highly-touted rookie to spur a Bills’ offence that was sometimes anemic last year.
Another aspect on offence that the Bills will need to improve upon from the 2009 season will be throwing the football.
Last year, they finished 30th in total passing yards despite having Terrell Owens as a receiving threat.
No set pivot
A big reason for this is because there was little stability at the quarterback position last year.
The number one pivot, Trent Edwards, was plagued by inconsistent play and injuries, and his mid-season replacement, Ryan Fitzpatrick, did not perform much better.
In order to solve this problem the offensive line will need to do much better than the 46 sacks they allowed last year.
Defensively, Buffalo played excellently against the pass, ranking second overall in opponent’s yards, however, they were atrocious trying to stop the run, allowing a little over 156 yards a game — 30th overall in the category.
Overall, Buffalo finds itself in a familiar position coming into the season. They still have inconsistency at quarterback, and their defence is not good enough to hide this fact.
It will be tough for the Bills to improve upon their 6-10 record from last year and whether or not the addition of Spiller was a wise move is still for the jury to decide.
The Bills will begin their 2010 campaign this Sunday at Ralph Wilson Stadium against the division rival Miami Dolphins.