Buffalo Bills defensive lineman Marcell Dareus is on a short leash this year

The Buffalo Bills star defensive tackle Marcell Dareus is looking at what could be his final season in Buffalo if he doesn’t get back on track. The third overall pick in the 2011 NFL Draft has 291 tackles and 34 sacks in his career so far and at only 27 years of age, he should be able to keep piling up the stats and still be labeled as a threat to opposing quarterbacks.

Granted that he played during most of this time in a 3-4 defensive scheme including under former Buffalo Bills head coach Rex Ryan, however, if he can’t produce under Sean McDermott’s 4-3 scheme then Dareus may not be back in Buffalo after the 2017 season.

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In 2015, Marcell Dareus was suspended one game in Week 1 against the Indianapolis Colts for violating the NFL’s substance-abuse policy. Even though Buffalo defeated the Colts 27-14, fans were hoping for Mr. Big Stuff to wrap his humongous arms around Andrew Luck and make life very hard for him.


In 2016, Dareus was caught yet again violating the league’s substance-abuse policy which cost him playing time as he served a four game suspension. As a head coach, having all your best players on game day is important and when the Bills lost Dareus to the suspension, life became much harder for the Buffalo defense.

Stats and Injuries

Marcell Dareus had his best seasons in 2013 and 2014 when he tallied up 119 tackles and 17.5 total sacks. When 2015 came around, these stats dramatically dropped. In 2015 Dareus had only 51 tackles and two sacks and in 2016 he recorded only 39 total tackles and 3.5 sacks. What happened here? Was it the defensive scheme? Lack of discipline perhaps? There is different opinions that are said about this.

A big difference between Dareus’ performance in 2015 and 2016 seasons was that he only missed one game in 2015 due to his one game suspension as compared to him missing eight games this past season played. After serving his four game suspension in 2016, Dareus missed four more games due to injury.


Some like to say that the injury battles with his groin are due to lack of conditioning which caused him to miss the next three games and which included battles against the Rams, 49ers and Dolphins. Dareus made his first start in 2016 against the Patriots but was sidelined yet again the following week against the Seattle Seahawks.

Sean McDermott will not tolerate distractions

Since new head coach Sean McDermott’s arrival, he has expressed that he wants to change the Bills culture and get them back to winning games. In order to get back on track there can be no distractions. As of right now, Dareus can be considered a distraction for the Bills.

McDermott is expecting his players to execute and there is questions up in the air whether Dareus can be a playmaker again or not. With Dareus’ monster contract, expect to see McDermott having a close eye on Dareus this season as he attempts to see if Dareus is really worth money that he is being paid.

READ MORE: Buffalo’s most important games of 2017

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