Buffalo Rumblings surprised me in the first round by taking Aaron Maybin of Penn State. This pick isn't quite as shocking.
After releasing guard Derrick Dockery the day before the start of the 2009 free agent signing period, the Bills have yet to fill the hole that the release created. If the season started tomorrow, the Bills would be toying with the idea of starting tackles-by-trade Kirk Chambers or Demetrius Bell at left guard. We know - that's hardly ideal. Add in the fact that the team only has two legitimate interior linemen on the team (Geoff Hangartner and Brad Butler), and G/C scoots a little further up the list of priorities.
Max Unger is everything the Bills look for in an offensive lineman - smart, tough, versatile and possessing the athleticism and range to pull and get to the second level. He's also an accomplished pass blocker. Buffalo runs a zone-based blocking scheme that favors athletes to maulers, so Unger will very likely be the top-rated interior lineman on Buffalo's board here in a couple of weeks. He slides into the starting left guard spot right away, and considering how terrible Dockery was last year, Buffalo's offense probably gets better.
That just leaves one more gigantic question mark on Buffalo's offensive line - the future of left tackle Jason Peters. Since said future might include a trade (if anyone has first and third round picks they're looking to flush on a borderline elite tackle in his prime, give us a ring), the Bills may be looking at an extra early pick to use on a tackle prospect as well. If that were the case, we'd be completely comfortable flipping Butler over to left guard to play next to the rookie tackle, and then letting Unger play right guard. See? Versatility. Unger makes perfect sense for the Bills.
MTD thoughts: With Buffalo probably drafting two interior linemen in this year's draft, this is a solid choice. Unger's versatility would give Buffalo plenty of options in the rest of the draft. I'm just not completely sold on him having enough lower-body strength to play guard at the next level.
Mocking the Draft's Top Five Remaining Prospects - OT Phil Loadholt, QB Josh Freeman, CB Alphonso Smith, RB Shonn Greene, TE Chase Coffman