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Mario Williams is 'freaking Hercules,' says Bills WR

"NFL Total Access" kicked off its "32 teams in 32 days" series last week. We decided to score some brownie points by writing an accompanying post each night. We'll focus on one goal that each team needs to accomplish before Week 1.

Bills defense must improve following facelift

It was difficult to find an area of strength on the Buffalo Bills' defense last season. The unit finished 26th in yards allowed, 27th in sacks, 28th in rush defense and 19th in pass defense. Yikes.

Aware of the unit's shortcomings, the Bills busted out the checkbook to change their fortunes. In came defensive ends Mario Williams (six years, $96M) and Mark Anderson (four years, $19.5M), who have combined for 88.5 sacks in their careers. Meanwhile, Buffalo used the 10th overall pick in April's draft to address the secondary with cornerback Stephon Gilmore, who the team feels can slide directly into a starting role.

Defensive tackle Kyle Williams is back following an injury-plagued season, as is wild-card linebacker Shawne Merriman. And don't forget defensive tackle Marcell Dareus, the third overall pick in 2011 who showed serious potential as a rookie.

But this defense will be anchored by Mario Williams, who was handed record money to lead the unit's transformation. Wide receiver Stevie Johnson spoke glowingly of the sometimes-linebacker Thursday on NFL Network.

"A beast, man. He's huge," Johnson said, adding that "the dude's like freaking Hercules out there. He just leans on you and gets a sack. He's looking real strong out there. Our whole defense is looking dominant."

The Bills would love domination. But they'll settle for some much-needed consistency by the time they meet the New York Jets in Week 1.

Follow Dan Hanzus on Twitter @danhanzus.

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