State of the Bills: Running back group should grow during NFL Draft

After signing free agent Matt Breida, the Bills likely still are interested in adding a back, perhaps with a first-round pick.
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Devin Singletary and Zack Moss split the workload at running back for the Bills in 2020, producing 1,168 yards and averaging 4.35 yards per attempt.

That certainly wasn't bad production, but coach Sean McDermott clearly wants more in 2021, a year in which they have jettisoned their best blocking tight end, Tyler Kroft. They don't carry a fullback.

Toward the end of last season, the Bills also began to phase out Singletary, a third-round pick in 2019, for the rookie Moss before being forced to turn back to Singletary when Moss landed on injured reserve after their playoff victory over Indianapolis.

So in this third installment of our series examining the Bills' strength at each position group heading to the NFL Draft, we dive a little deeper into what they have, their confidence in those players and what a reasonable expectation would be for this coming season.

Zack Moss

Moss, a third-round pick a year ago, was trending upward when he was injured. Powerfully built at a compact 5-9, 225 pounds, he was their primary back throughout the last month of the regular season, then carried seven times and caught four passes against the Colts before leaving with his injury.

Moss averaged 4.3 yards on 112 carries for 481 yards and four TDs. He also caught 14 of 18 targets for 95 yards. He never fumbled.

Moss probably comes back at the top of the depth chart, barring anything that may happen in the draft.

Devin Singletary

After gaining 775 yards and averaging 5.1 yards per carry as a rookie while finishing the 2019 season as their workhorse back, Singletary was eventually supplanted by Moss as the lead back by the end of last season.

He has averaged 4.8 yards on 307 career carries for 1,462 yards and has caught 67 of 91 targets for 463 yards.

Whether he's part of their long-term plans is unclear. Trading him away, perhaps during the draft, would not shock anyone.

Matt Breida

Acquired as a free-agent, Breida brings world-class speed, though he's coming off a career-low 4.3 yards per attempt with the Miami Dolphins in 2020. But the sample size (59 carries in 12 games) was small compared to his previous three seasons, all with the San Francisco 49ers.

Breida has been clocked at speeds in excess of 22 miles per hour, making him one of the fastest players in the NFL.

In Buffalo, he'll join Singletary, Antonio Williams and Taiwan Jones in a running back room that figures to swell more after the draft.

Jones, 32, is a special-teams player. Williams flashed as an undrafted rookie last year, rushing for 63 yards and two TDs on 12 carries and catching two passes for 20 yards in his only appearance, a Week 17 laugher against Miami in which the Bills rested key regulars after being locked in as the AFC's No. 2 playoff seed.

Potential draft targets

The Bills could consider players such as Clemson's Travis Etienne or Alabama's Najee Harris in the first round.

Michael Carter of North Carolina could be value pick in the third round at 93 overall.

One way or another, the Bills figure to be adding to this group because they want more and need more in 2021.

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.