ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. — Micah Hyde was a Pro Bowler last season and a strong argument could be made that Jordan Poyer and Tre'Davious White should've joined him, as White finished the season as runner-up for Defensive Rookie of the Year.
Now that trio is adding a fourth in Vontae Davis. There's no denying Davis' talent: he’s a two-time Pro Bowler with 22 career interceptions.
But the 30-year-old's coming off groin surgery and has missed 13 games over the past two years. Working on a one-year deal, Davis has the incentive to return to form.
Those four are the locked-in starters. Where there's question is at nickel, as it's a battle between Phillip Gaines and Taron Johnson.
It was believed to be Johnson's job after getting picked in the fourth round, but Gaines took most of the first team reps in the slot through minicamp. Coach Sean McDermott saying he's been impressed to this point with the Gaines, who has good length.
The other question mark involves another rookie, Siran Neal. He's the top candidate to bring back McDermott's "Big Nickel" position.
Neal played linebacker, corner and safety in college and that flexibility is something the Bills’ head coach and defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier have raved about with visions of the rookie matching-up with the big-athletic tight ends becoming more prominent in the NFL.
How fast he acclimates and catches on could be quite a weapon added to that side of the ball.