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Tuesday, May 29, 2012
Bills wisely chose Dareus over Fairley

By James Walker

Remember 13 months ago when the Buffalo Bills had interest in former Auburn defensive tackle Nick Fairley? Buffalo, which owned the No. 3 overall pick, had a heavy presence at Fairley's pro day and brought him in for a personal visit weeks before the 2011 draft.

Buffalo wanted help on the defensive line, and Fairley and Marcell Dareus were the top two prospects. When both players were on the board, Buffalo wise took Dareus at No. 3 over Fairley.

Fast forward one year later. Dareus is an up-and-coming defensive tackle coming off a solid rookie season. He recorded 43 tackles, 5.5 sacks and played in all 16 games for the Bills in 2011. Dareus is a young player with Pro Bowl potential.

Meanwhile, Fairley, who was taken at No. 13 overall by the Detroit Lions, was arrested for the second time in two months this past weekend. He reportedly was charged with driving under the influence and attempting to evade police while driving 100 miles per hour. In addition, Fairley battled a foot injury as a rookie and recorded just 11 tackles and one sack.

It's clear Buffalo made the right choice. Not only is Dareus the more productive player on the field, but he is not the headache Fairley has become off the field. These are the kind of smart decisions you want to make in the first round.