Buffalo Bills draft preview: Safety

Concluding a position-by-position preview of next month's draft from a Buffalo Bills perspective:

Position: Safety

Current personnel: Aaron Williams (signed through 2018), Da'Norris Searcy (2014), Duke Williams (2016), Jonathan Meeks (2016), Jajuan Harley (2016)

Draft need: Moderate-to-low

State of the position: There isn't so much a lack of young prospects at this position as there is a dearth of proven players. After one turnaround season, the Bills gave Aaron Williams a contract extension through 2018 and are banking on him continuing to improve. He is currently the NFL's 11th-highest paid safety in terms of average salary. Beyond Williams is a drop-off. General manager Doug Whaley has said there will be a competition between Searcy, Duke Williams, and Meeks for the second starting job, but there is no guarantee the competition will produce a viable option.

Searcy is best as a role player, while Williams -- a fourth-round pick last season -- couldn't get on the field, even late in the season when the Bills weren't playing for anything. Meeks missed time with an ankle injury last season and played exclusively on special teams. Perhaps one of those players will take the next step and emerge, but for right now, safety is a position to watch entering training camp.

Could that change after the draft? Unlikely. The draft class at safety isn't considered very deep, and the Bills aren't expected to go after the top names: Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, Calvin Pryor, or Jimmie Ward. It's possible they could take another mid-round safety and add him to the mix with Duke Williams and Meeks. They could also wait another year, see what they have in those two second-year players, and re-assess the position after this season.

Sweet spot: Mid-to-late rounds

Possible targets: Ed Reynolds (Stanford), Kenny Ladler (Vanderbilt), Brock Vereen (Minnesota)