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Matt Barkley seventh QB prospect to visit One Bills Drive

By Tim Graham

I'll be honest. I don't care about pre-draft visits. Tracking them feels like wasted energy.

But I know many football fans feverishly track them, so here are the prospects who visited One Bills Drive today: USC quarterback Matt Barkley, Tennessee Tech receiver DaRick Rogers, Oregon linebacker Dion Jordan and Georgia linebacker Alec Ogletree.

Each team is allowed 30 pre-draft visits plus an unlimited number of local players, whether they be natives from the area or attend a nearby college -- a minor opportunity for the Buffalo Bills compared to, say, the Miami Dolphins, who have a few Division I colleges and absurd prep talent to draw from.

Two, three, maybe four predraft visitors will get drafted by that team.

Another three or four prospects who didn't visit will get drafted, too.

The Bills traded up to draft North Carolina State receiver T.J. Graham in the third round a year ago. Graham made one pre-draft visit -- to the Indianapolis Colts.

The Bills own the eighth overall draft choice. As such, they're going to bring in the top 15 or so players in case an unexpected blue-chipper falls to them or the Bills have an opportunity to trade back.

The Bills also are meeting with every player with a draftable grade at the key position of quarterback. They've had seven on campus already and have sat down with even more when you include meetings at the Senior Bowl, NFL scouting combine and pro days.

All teams follow a similar format for determing their pre-draft visits: the best players at a critical position or two of need, non-combine participants and players who have medical or character concerns.

The Bills have six draft picks this year and a good portion of their 30 visits will be off the board and on other teams' rosters by the end of the second round.

Thus, you shouldn't read too much into the names passing through Orchard Park -- unless you're just trying to stave off boredom until NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell brings that first card to the Radio City Music Hall lectern on April 25.


2013 draft | T.J. Graham
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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 |