Bills hit their target with Boogie Basham

They prove they're serious about bolstering pass rush with second-round NFL Draft pick.
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Adding Gregory Rousseau, the defensive end from Miami who two seasons ago finished second in the nation in sacks, wasn''t good enough for the Buffalo Bills. They had to have Wake Forest defensive end Carlos "Boogie" Basham Jr. in the second round too.

In fact, if they couldn't get him with the 61st overall pick, they were going to trade down, according to general manager Brandon Beane.

"What we try to do prior to the draft is just set us up to take the best player on our board," he said. "That's what we've done."

Those best athletes also should help with an immediate need, especially after being eliminated from the playoffs in the AFC Championship Game by dynamic quarterback Patrick Mahomes, then seeing him be made to look ordinary by a superior Tampa Bay Bucs pass rush in the Super Bowl.

"Tampa did a heck of a job against Kansas City in that game and really did a nice job of making Mahomes move off his spot," Beane said. "That was probably as big a difference as anything in the outcome of the game, and we wanted to definitely get better there this offseason."

Mission accomplished.

At 6-3 and 275 pounds, Basham is widely regarded as perhaps too heavy to compete on the edge at the next level and likely will need to lose some weight.

The scouting report on Basham delivered by NFL.com quoted a personnel director for another team saying that Basham is "carrying some extra weight and will need to lean down a little bit or he's going to end up eating himself inside."

Nevertheless, he's a good, proven player from a Power 5 conference who is expected to win more than his share of battles.

More from NFL.com: "His rush attack is more technical and explosive, using active hands, spin counters and a thoughtful approach. His lack of suddenness and edge speed could get him pegged as an early-down end while moving inside to become an interior rusher on passing downs."

Basham last season led the team with 5.0 sacks despite being limited to six games due to missing time with a COVID-19 infection and then skipping Wake's bowl game to get ready for the draft. Of his 28 tackles, six were for losses.

Like Rousseau, Basham rushed the passer from the inside at times. So he gives the Bills some versatility with their sub packages as well.

"They definitely said they loved the way I played, inside and out and being versatile," Basham said of his first contact with the Bills. "That's a thing they look for in their players."

Nick Fierro is the publisher of Bills Central. Check out the latest Bills news at www.si.com/nfl/bills and follow Fierro on Twitter at @NickFierro