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Is Von Miller this Generations Cornelius Bennett?


Foxx
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© Staff, Rochester Democrat and Chronicle via Imagn Content Services, LLC

 

Long-time Bills Fans remember the acquisition of Cornelius 'Biscuit' Bennett late in the '87 season. 

 

After six months in which the Colts and Jim Irsay could not sign their '87 first-round draft pick Cornelius Bennett, they engineered a monumental three-team trade on Halloween in which he was traded to the Bills. The LA Rams (the first iteration), Colts, and Bills agreed to a package that would send three first-round picks, three second-round picks, RBs Greg Bell and Owen Gill to the Rams, and Eric Dickerson to the Colts. In addition to Greg Bell, the Bills parted with two of those first-rounders ('88 and '89) and their second-round pick in '89 for the rights to Bennett.

 

It was during Marv Levy's first full year as the HC and Bill Polian's third year as GM. Despite Biscuit not having a training camp, he made an immediate impact. "Cornelius Bennett came in without any NFL experience or training camp and immediately impacted. "He is everything we heard about him as an athlete," Levy said. "He's got great temperament. He came in and learned a lot of things quickly."

 

Biscuit played in 8 games his rookie season, starting 7 of them. He had 8.5 sacks, forced 5 fumbles, and had 69 tackles. "His impact was felt both by his presence and what he helped others on our defense do," Levy said. "He's learned much faster than I anticipated, and he has contributed much faster than I thought any rookie could." Marv added, "After Cornelius arrived, people aren't able to run away from Bruce because they'll meet resistance from the other side."

 

There is little doubt that the acquisition of Biscuit put the Bills over the hump and into the force that was the juggernaut from '88 to '93, in which they won 4 straight AFC Championships. Though they ultimately failed to win the Lombardi, those teams were the best in the Bills' NFL history. 

 

Though the '22 season is only a game old for the Bills and Bills Mafia, Von Miller's impact upon the team in their season debut was palpable. You can see the effect his presence is having. Von had two sacks and three hurries on 25 pass-rushing snaps and a pass rush win rate of 47%. The overall pressures by the Bills' defense were an astounding 27 of 41 passing attempts for a rate of almost 66%. They accomplished this with just a 4-man rush the entire game. They did not blitz Matthew Stafford once.

 

While it is undoubtedly too early to know if the Bills signing of Von is going to equate to the acquiring of Bennett, Bills Fans are as optimistic as they have been since the glory days of the late '80s/early '90s.

 

All we can say is, Go Von, and Go Bills!

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I think that this is a very comparable comparison.

 

Maybe not with where those two players were in their careers,

 

but certainly how their impact on the team might be.

 

 

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Alaska Darin

Maybe more of Bryce Paup given he's almost exclusively an Edge and Bennett was used interchangeably (responsibility-wise) with Talley?

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TakeYouToTasker 2.0
5 minutes ago, Alaska Darin said:

Maybe more of Bryce Paup given he's almost exclusively an Edge and Bennett was used interchangeably (responsibility-wise) with Talley?


I think this is apt.

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22 minutes ago, Alaska Darin said:

Maybe more of Bryce Paup given he's almost exclusively an Edge and Bennett was used interchangeably (responsibility-wise) with Talley?

another waste of talent by the brilliant Walt Corey

if  only could have pulled himself away from the Flintstone cartons long enough to run an aggressive defense

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24 minutes ago, Alaska Darin said:

Maybe more of Bryce Paup given he's almost exclusively an Edge and Bennett was used interchangeably (responsibility-wise) with Talley?

In my mind, I was speaking mainly to the effect that Bennett had on the team. I don't think Paup came close to the same effect that Biscuit had.

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44 minutes ago, Foxx said:

In my mind, I was speaking mainly to the effect that Bennett had on the team. I don't think Paup came close to the same effect that Biscuit had.

I know having Von Miller on one side of the football and Josh Allen on the other is scary good. 

 

A nightmare for the opposition...

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Alaska Darin
54 minutes ago, Spartacus said:

another waste of talent by the brilliant Walt Corey

if  only could have pulled himself away from the Flintstone cartons long enough to run an aggressive defense

Paup never played for Corey, which is why he was the Defensive Player of the Year his very first season in Buffalo.

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Just now, Alaska Darin said:

Paup never played for Corey, which is why he was the Defensive Player of the Year his very first season in Buffalo.

Walt wasted the tremendous pass rushing skills of Bennett by playing him in coverage too much

He could have stacked him on Bruce and created all sorts of chaos

 

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Alaska Darin
53 minutes ago, Foxx said:

In my mind, I was speaking mainly to the effect that Bennett had on the team. I don't think Paup came close to the same effect that Biscuit had.

Can't say I agree with that.  Obviously the BILLS were at the end of their run when Paup showed up but he injected a lot of life into the defense that first season (17.5 sacks, 3 FF, 2 picks, DPOY).  Bruce's sack numbers started going up again once Paup showed up (even though he was already 32) because offenses couldn't focus solely on him.

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Alaska Darin
1 minute ago, Spartacus said:

Walt wasted the tremendous pass rushing skills of Bennett by playing him in coverage too much

He could have stacked him on Bruce and created all sorts of chaos

Sorry, I didn't really understand what you were getting at. 

 

Corey had a lot of bullets in his gun to shoot.  I think the biggest mistake the BILLS made was not going 43 when Conlon bailed for LA.  Corey just wasn't an innovator of any kind.

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Arm of Harm
6 hours ago, Foxx said:

In my mind, I was speaking mainly to the effect that Bennett had on the team. I don't think Paup came close to the same effect that Biscuit had.

 

People forget how good Paup was before his injury. During the 1995 season he achieved the following: 17.5 sacks, 2 INTs, 70 solo tackles, defensive MVP for the entire NFL.

 

There are only 2 seasons when Bennett had more solo tackles than that (1995 and 1999). Only 2 seasons when Bennett had 2 INTs (1988 and 1989). In the years '87, '88, and '91, Bennett achieved 8.5, 9.5, and 9 sacks, respectively. Other than those three years, Bennett never had more than 5.5 sacks in a season. Paup's 17.5 sack season looks good when you compare it to Bennett's best season (9.5 sacks), and even better when you compare it to his typical season (5.5 sacks or less). 

 

Unfortunately, Paup experienced a career-altering injury shortly after that MVP season, and was never the same player again. So, we really just have that one year of a healthy Paup, playing in a Wade Phillips 3-4 defense. And we're left wondering, what if?

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6 hours ago, Arm of Harm said:

 

People forget how good Paup was before his injury. During the 1995 season he achieved the following: 17.5 sacks, 2 INTs, 70 solo tackles, defensive MVP for the entire NFL.

 

There are only 2 seasons when Bennett had more solo tackles than that (1995 and 1999). Only 2 seasons when Bennett had 2 INTs (1988 and 1989). In the years '87, '88, and '91, Bennett achieved 8.5, 9.5, and 9 sacks, respectively. Other than those three years, Bennett never had more than 5.5 sacks in a season. Paup's 17.5 sack season looks good when you compare it to Bennett's best season (9.5 sacks), and even better when you compare it to his typical season (5.5 sacks or less). 

 

Unfortunately, Paup experienced a career-altering injury shortly after that MVP season, and was never the same player again. So, we really just have that one year of a healthy Paup, playing in a Wade Phillips 3-4 defense. And we're left wondering, what if?

Again, the comparison made was whether or not the addition of Miller equates to the acquisition of Bennett. Paup may have had better numbers and been a better player but Biscuit put the Bills over the top.

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Arm of Harm
On 9/11/2022 at 4:48 AM, Foxx said:

Again, the comparison made was whether or not the addition of Miller equates to the acquisition of Bennett. Paup may have had better numbers and been a better player but Biscuit put the Bills over the top.

 

Von Miller had a couple injury-shortened seasons. If you ignore those, his worst season saw him get 8 sacks. His second-worst season was 9.5 sacks. His best season was 18.5 sacks. I don't agree with the Cornelius Bennett comparison for a couple reasons:

  • Von Miller is a much better pass rusher than Cornelius Bennett.
  • Cornelius Bennett helped us get to Super Bowls. But he never helped us win one.

Rather that compare von Miller to Cornelius Bennett, I'd like to compare von Miller to . . . von Miller! Last season, Sean McVay determined that his team was a player away from winning the Super Bowl. During the middle of the season, he traded for von Miller. Von Miller gave the Rams' pass rush the extra juice it needed to push them over the top. Without him, it's very unlikely they would have won that Lombardi Trophy.

 

The Bills have a better quarterback than the Rams. A better overall passing attack. An improved offensive line. Even without von Miller their defensive line would be pretty good. Their secondary is outstanding. When von Miller was choosing whether to sign with the Bills or the Rams, von Miller's father told him, "The Bills have everything they need to win a Super Bowl, except for you." Can von Miller do for us this year what he did for the Rams last year? I don't know, but that's the comparison I'm looking for. 

 

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