By Tim Graham
The Buffalo Bills defensive-line depth has been a much-discussed topic since they landed Mario Williams shortly after the free-agency period began.
Actually seeing them line up on the field helps illustrate how much better they truly are.
At this afternoon's voluntary workout in Orchard Park, the Bills' second-team edge rushers were Shawne Merriman and Mark Anderson.
"That just says people got something to worry about," sophomore defensive tackle Marcell Dareus said. "Those are two hellified players."
I remarked to Buffalo News colleague Mark Gaughan how much better the second-unit edge rushers were than last year's most common tandem, Chris Kelsay and Spencer Johnson as outside linebackers in a 3-4. Or, if you want to talk strictly defensive ends, the most common starters were Dwan Edwards and Alex Carrington.
Gaughan, who has covered the team since 1988, mulled for a bit and said he would have to go back to Bruce Smith and Phil Hansen in the last 1990s to find a starting Bills edge tandem he would take over the second-teamers at today's practice.
Let's think about that for a moment.
Granted, Merriman is injury prone and can't be relied upon to be a full-time player anymore. But he does have a track record as a disruptive force when he can play. Anderson, meanwhile, is coming off a 10-sack season for the New England Patriots.
What starting pair between the Bruce Smith era and 2012 could we consider?
Hansen and Marcellus Wiley, who had one big season when Hansen was 32 years old and recorded two sacks?
Aaron Schobel along with Ryan Denney or Kelsay?
You tell us.