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Jay Skurski's 3 Bills thoughts: Missing out on Jeremy Maclin hurts, top 100 list, Cordy Glenn's future

1. The Buffalo Bills' inability to land free agent wide receiver Jeremy Maclin is a setback for the team. There's no point in trying to spin it any other way. How much of one, however, depends on your expectations for the franchise in 2017. If you think the Bills can challenge for a playoff spot, missing out on Maclin is a big blow. A top three of Sammy Watkins, Maclin and rookie Zay Jones looks way better on paper than one of Watkins, Jones and whoever.

If you're of the mind that the Bills will need some time to be competitive under a new coaching staff, and potentially with a new quarterback, then missing out on Maclin isn't that big a deal.

There are also quite a few unknowns right now, too. Was Maclin's ultimate goal the most money, or something else? He has a chance to be the Ravens' No. 1 receiver, which he wasn't going to get here. What kind of offer did the Bills make? That would tell us quite a bit about how they valued him.

ESPN's report that Maclin's final decision came down to the Ravens and Philadelphia Eagles was perhaps most interesting Monday. He either really didn't like the money the Bills were offering, or something else about the franchise didn't appeal to him. The grim reality for the Bills -- and their fans, many of whom have an inferiority complex about the franchise -- is that until they turn around their losing ways on the field, they're always going to be underdogs when it comes to land free coveted free agents -- unless they're willing to pay an absurd premium (see: Williams, Mario).

2. The entire list has yet to be released, but it's a good bet the Bills will finish with two representatives on NFL Network's list of the league's top 100 players. Linebacker Lorenzo Alexander ranks No. 91. while running back LeSean McCoy checked in at No. 27, which was revealed Monday night.

If indeed only two players make the list, it's a sign that new General Manager Brandon Beane and his personnel staff have a lot of work ahead of them in acquiring more blue-chip talent. It's also a reminder, though, that the team has players in Watkins and defensive tackle Marcell Dareus who seem like they've got the talent to make the list, but need to put health and/or off-field problems behind them.

3. Seeing rookie Dion Dawkins work as the starting left tackle during spring practices might not register as all that important at the moment. Starter Cordy Glenn should step back into that job when he's healthy.

That was an issue for Glenn last season, though, and it's continued into 2017. He missed five games with ankle and back injuries in 2016. The Bills made a massive financial commitment to Glenn a little over a year ago, and are likely tied to him through at least the 2018 season. Seeing Dawkins work so much at Glenn's spot is enough to ponder whether the Bills ultimately have their future left tackle on the roster.

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