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Bills focus on more need spots in adding undrafted free agents

Not surprisingly, areas of need -- tight end, wide receiver, and safety -- received extra attention from the Buffalo Bills with their 13 signings of undrafted free agents Friday.

That is consistent with the way they proceeded through free agency and the NFL Draft.

The list of undrafted acquisitions includes two tight ends (Jason Croom of Tennessee and Keith Towbridge of Louisville), two wide receivers (Brandon Reilly of Nebraska and Daikiel Shorts of West Virginia), and two safeties (B.T. Sanders of Nicholls State and Jeremy Tyler of West Virginia).

In addition, the Bills added former University at Buffalo running back Jordan Johnson, South Carolina defensive end Marquavius Lewis, Virginia Tech defensive tackle Nigel Williams, Idaho punter Austin Rehkow, and guards Greg Pyke of Georgia and Zach Voytek of New Haven.

The most notables pickups appear to be the tight ends.

The 6-foot-4, 246-pound Croom, who has a chance to be noticed at a spot where the Bills' depth is sorely lacking. He was projected as a seventh-round pick, so the fact he went undrafted wasn't exactly a shock.

Croom's tendency to drop passes (he had seven drops to 60 career receptions), poor pass protection, and missing two seasons (2012 and 2015 with injuries) were viewed as the biggest reasons he went undrafted.

However, NFL scouts liked his speed and athleticism. He does a nice job of running routes and is a solid run-blocker.

Towbridge's size (6-5, 262 pounds) was enough to draw the Bills' interest. He blocks well at the point of attack, and although he needs work with his overall blocking technique, his frame allows for significant improvement in that area if he has the time to develop. Towbridge also is surprisingly fast for his size, but wasn't very productive as a receiver with only 21 career receptions.

His size, alone, could at least earn him a spot on the practice squad.

Here's a closer look at the other undrafted free-agent signings:

Johnson, 6-1, 220 pounds. Sixth on UB's all-time rushing list. ... Sweet Home High School product.

Lewis, 6-3, 270 pounds. Was a team captain at South Carolina. ... Two-year starter at defensive end.

Pyke, 6-5, 320 pounds. Spent last season at tackle for Georgia after 26 starts at right guard in 2014 and 2015.

Rehkow, 6-3, 214 pounds. Was a rare punter and placekicker for Idaho. ... Placed 26 of 56 punts inside the opponent's 20-yard line last season. ... Had a 67-yard field goal in high school.

Reilly, 6-2, 200 pounds. Had 70 career receptions for 1,275 yards. ... Was a walk-on and received a football scholarship before his sophomore season.

Sanders, 6-0, 195 pounds. Ranked second on Nicholls State in tackles in 2015. ... Second-team All-Southland pick.

Sayles, 5-10, 170 pounds. Set West Georgia record with 13 blocked kicks. ... Finished with 12 interceptions in 47 games in his college career. ... Clocked at 4.49 seconds in the 40-yard dash during his Pro Day.

Shorts, 6-1, 202 pounds. West Virginia's leading receiver last season with 894 yards and five touchdowns. ... Had a streak of at least one catch in 27 consecutive games.

Tyler, 5-11, 207 pounds. Credited with 56 tackles and had two interceptions for West Virginia last season.

Voytek, 6-5, 305 pounds. Started entire career at New Haven at left tackle. ... Three-time Northeast-10 Conference Offensive Lineman of the Year. ... Last season, was an American Football Coaches Association Division II First-Team All-American.

Williams, 6-2, 297 pounds. Registered seven sacks in 51 career games for Virginia Tech.

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