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Wild draft has Spiller to Bills; Bradford No. 1

C.J. Spiller was not surprised when the Buffalo Bills made him the ninth pick of the 2010 NFL draft.

"I had a good feeling coming out of my visit to Buffalo that I could wind up there," Spiller said Thursday night in New York.

Trying to revive a moribund offense, the Bills kicked the tires on several players at other positions but picked Spiller, consensus All-American and ACC player of the year at Clemson.

"There was only one Spiller," said Buffalo general manager Buddy Nix. "He's a playmaker that creates field position and scores points."

Buffalo was 30th in offense last season averaging 273 yards per game, and Spiller, who ran a 4.37-second 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine, is the fastest player drafted by the Bills in 20 years.

"We need excitement, someone that can make things happen on his own," Nix said.

Spiller attended draft ceremonies at Radio City Music Hall in New York City accompanied by his family and a few close friends including Clemson coach Dabo Swinney.

The Bills' website anticipated Spiller would return to Buffalo today.

He has told the team he wants to wear number 21, the Bills said.

Former Dallas Cowboys and Georgia Tech head coach Chan Gailey was named Buffalo's coach in January. Dick Jauron had been fired in November.

Spiller's name first surfaced during ESPN's primetime coverage shortly before the sixth pick.

"I say that C.J. Spiller, by far, is the most talented player in this draft," said former Tampa Bay Bucs coach Jon Gruden during the telecast. "Watch this guy run the 40 on water. He's electric."

Consensus All-American and Atlantic Coast Conference player of the year in 2009, Spiller was the 23rd Clemson player taken in the first round.

During his career Spiller set 31 school records for offense, scoring and returns. His per-game average 191.42 all-purpose yards last season broke a 31-year old ACC record.

Spiller, of Lake Butler, Fla., was sixth balloting for the 2009 Heisman Trophy, tying former Clemson quarterback Steve Fuller (1978) for the highest finish by a Tiger player and was named Walter Camp All-American at two positions (kickoff returner, running back).

As a senior, he became the first player in Atlantic Coast Conference history to rush for over 1,000 yards (1,212) and gain over 500 yards receiving (503) in the same season.

Spiller also tied an NCAA record with eight returns for touchdowns (seven kickoffs, one punt). The seven kickoff returns for scores set an NCAA record set by Anthony Davis of Southern Cal (1972-74).

He finished third in Clemson career rushing with 3,547 yards and 32 touchdowns and caught 123 passes for 1,420 yards and 11 TDs.

His 308 career points are second in school history and his 21 career touchdowns of 50 yards or more surpassed Tim Brown, Rocket Ismail and Reggie Bush. He and Bush are the only players in college football history with 3,000 rushing yards, 1,500 kickoff-return yards, 1,000 receiving yards, and 500 punt-return yards.

He was one of two players in school history to account for a touchdown five different ways (punt return, kickoff return, reception, rush and touchdown pass) and was the only ACC player to throw a scoring pass, catch a touchdown pass, and run for a score in the same game, accomplishing that feat vs. N.C. State in 2009.

In addition, Spiller was a three-time All-American in track and field, and in December he received a bachelor's of science in sociology.

Twice he was named to the Clemson Dean's List and last season became the first player to be named first-team Academic All-ACC as well as first-team All-ACC on the field in the same year.

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