History of Buffalo Bills First-Round NFL Draft Picks All Time

    Between Josh Allen, Jim Kelly, and NFL career sack leader Bruce Smith, the Buffalo Bills have many high-quality first-round picks in their history to boast.

    Spanning back to the 1961 NFL Draft, the Buffalo Bills have made countless first-round draft picks. Their success has fluctuated at times, but their best selections have ultimately enabled them to stay competitive across eras — from the 1980s and 1990s to the modern game.

    Buffalo Bills First-Round Draft Picks Throughout History

    In the first round, the Bills have had five picks go on to join the Hall of Fame ranks. Among those picks are renowned quarterback Jim Kelly and defensive end Bruce Smith. Smith is widely regarded as one of the best defenders of all time and is the only player in NFL history ever to eclipse 200 career sacks.

    2024

    The Bills traded the 28th pick to the Kansas City Chiefs.

    2023

    • Dalton Kincaid | Pick 25
      TE, Utah

    2022

    • Kaiir Elam | Pick 23
      CB, Florida

    2021

    • Gregory Rousseau | Pick 30
      DL, Miami (FL)

    2020

    The Bills traded the 22nd pick to the Minnesota Vikings.

    2019

    • Ed Oliver | Pick 9
      DT, Houston

    2018

    • Josh Allen | Pick 7
      QB, Wyoming
    • Tremaine Edmunds | Pick 16
      LB, Virginia Tech

    2017

    • Tre’Davious White | Pick 27
      CB, LSU

    2016

    • Shaq Lawson | Pick 19
      DE, Clemson

    2015

    The Bills traded the 19th pick to the Cleveland Browns.

    2014

    • Sammy Watkins | Pick 4
      WR, Clemson

    2013

    • EJ Manuel | Pick 16
      QB, Florida State

    2012

    • Stephon Gilmore | Pick 10
      DB, South Carolina

    2011

    • Marcell Dareus | Pick 3
      DT, Alabama

    2010

    • C.J. Spiller | Pick 9
      RB, Clemson

    2009

    • Aaron Maybin | Pick 11
      DE, Penn State
    • Eric Wood | Pick 28
      C, Louisville

    2008

    • Leodis McKelvin | Pick 11
      DB, Troy

    2007

    • Marshawn Lynch | Pick 12
      RB, California

    2006

    • Donte Whitner | Pick 8
      DB, Ohio State
    • John McCargo | Pick 26
      DT, North Carolina State

    2005

    The Bills traded the 20th pick to the Dallas Cowboys.

    2004

    • Lee Evans | Pick 13
      WR, Wisconsin
    • J.P. Losman | Pick 22
      QB, Tulane

    2003

    • Willis McGahee | Pick 23
      RB, Miami (FL)

    2002

    • Mike Williams | Pick 4
      OT, Texas

    2001

    • Nate Clements | Pick 21
      DB, Ohio State

    2000

    • Erik Flowers | Pick 26
      DE, Arizona State

    1999

    • Antoine Winfield | Pick 23
      DB, Ohio State

    1998

    The Bills traded the ninth pick to the Jacksonville Jaguars.

    1997

    • Antowain Smith | Pick 23
      RB, Houston

    1996

    • Eric Moulds | Pick 24
      WR, Mississippi State

    1995

    • Ruben Brown | Pick 14
      G, Pittsburgh

    1994

    • Jeff Burris | Pick 27
      DB, Notre Dame

    1993

    • Thomas Smith | Pick 28
      DB, North Carolina

    1992

    • John Fina | Pick 27
      OT, Arizona

    1991

    • Henry Jones | Pick 26
      DB, Illinois

    1990

    • James Williams | Pick 16
      DB, Fresno State

    1989

    The Bills did not have a selection in the first round of the 1989 NFL Draft as part of the Eric Dickerson trade.

    1988

    The Bills did not have a selection in the first round of the 1988 NFL Draft as part of the Dickerson trade.

    1987

    • Shane Conlan | Pick 8
      LB, Penn State

    1986

    • Ronnie Harmon | Pick 16
      RB, Iowa
    • Will Wolford | Pick 20
      OT, Vanderbilt

    1985

    • Bruce Smith* | Pick 1
      DE, Virginia Tech
    • Derrick Burroughs | Pick 14
      DB, Memphis

    1984

    • Greg Bell | Pick 26
      RB, Notre Dame

    1983

    • Tony Hunter | Pick 12
      TE, Notre Dame
    • Jim Kelly* | Pick 14
      QB, Miami (FL)

    1982

    • Perry Tuttle | Pick 19
      WR, Clemson

    1981

    • Booker Moore | Pick 28
      RB, Penn State

    1980

    • Jim Ritcher | Pick 16
      G, North Carolina State

    1979

    • Tom Cousineau | Pick 1
      LB, Ohio State
    • Jerry Butler | Pick 5
      WR, Clemson

    1978

    • Terry Miller | Pick 5
      RB, Oklahoma State

    1977

    • Phil Dokes | Pick 12
      DT, Oklahoma State

    1976

    • Mario Clark | Pick 18
      DB, Oregon

    1975

    • Tom Ruud | Pick 19
      LB, Nebraska

    1974

    • Reuben Gant | Pick 18
      TE, Oklahoma State

    1973

    • Paul Seymour | Pick 7
      TE, Michigan
    • Joe DeLamielleure* | Pick 26
      G, Michigan State

    1972

    • Walt Patulski | Pick 1
      DE, Notre Dame

    1971

    • J.D. Hill | Pick 4
      WR, Arizona State

    1970

    • Al Cowlings | Pick 5
      DE, USC

    1969

    • O.J. Simpson* | Pick 1
      RB, USC

    1968

    • Haven Moses | Pick 9
      WR, San Diego State

    1967

    • John Pitts | Pick 22
      DB, Arizona State

    1966

    • Mike Dennis | Pick 8
      RB, Mississippi

    1965

    • Jim Davidson | Pick 8
      OT, Ohio State

    1964

    • Carl Eller* | Pick 5
      DE, Minnesota

    1963

    • Dave Behrman | Pick 4
      C, Michigan State

    1962

    • Ernie Davis | Pick 4
      HB, Syracuse

    1961

    • Ken Rice | Pick 1
      OT, Auburn

    *Inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame

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