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Bills try to salvage Aaron Williams by switching him to safety

By Tim Graham

Aaron Williams isn't a cornerback anymore. The Buffalo Bills are moving him to safety.

General Manager Buddy Nix seemed to disclose Williams' conversion by accident today at the Bills' annual pre-draft luncheon. When discussing the importance of cornerbacks in today's NFL, Nix mentioned Williams as having played the position in the past tense.

Asked for clarification on Williams being switched to safety, Nix replied, "Yeah, now I'm saying that. That's [the coaching staff's] decision, but that's one they've made so far."

The decision to switch Williams from cornerback to safety indicates he's venturing even more into "bust" territory, especially at a news conference in which Nix discussed how vital cornerbacks are and how deep the safety position is in this year's draft.

"There's more safeties -- good safeties -- available this year in the draft than I've seen in 10 years," Nix said. "Sometimes we've got three guys up there in the first three or four rounds. This year, we've got them all the way through the draft."

Nix said the Bills want to draft a cornerback or sign one "or get one or two in free agency."

Williams was a white-knuckle defender last year. When opposing quarterbacks threw his direction, Buffalo fans braced themselves.

Williams missed five games last season with a leg injury, but tagged him for five passing touchdowns. Only 11 cornerbacks allowed more.

When throwing Williams' way, PFF showed quarterbacks posted a 120.4 rating, sixth highest in the NFL.

The Bills need a quarterback partly because they drafted Williams 34th overall in 2011. The 35th pick was Andy Dalton to the Cincinnati Bengals, and the 36th was Colin Kaepernick to the San Francisco 49ers.


2013 draft | Aaron Williams | Buddy Nix
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About Press Coverage

Tim Graham

Tim Graham

Tim Graham returned to The Buffalo News in 2011 after covering the NFL for three years at ESPN and for one year at the Palm Beach Post. Before that, the Cleveland native spent seven seasons on the Buffalo Sabres beat for The News and was president of the Boxing Writers Association of America.

@ByTimGraham |

Mark Gaughan

Mark Gaughan

Buffalo native Mark Gaughan started working at The News in 1980 and has been covering the Bills exclusively since 1992. He is a former president of the Pro Football Writers of America, and he is a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame selection committee.

@gggaughan |

Jay Skurski

Jay Skurski

Jay Skurski joined The News in January 2009. The Lewiston native attended St. Francis High School before graduating from the University of South Florida. He writes a weekly Fantasy column in addition to his beat writing duties.

@JaySkurski |