(WIVB) — Will Anderson is a potential top-five pick in this year’s NFL Draft, and he is someone who is a big fan of Bills linebacker Von Miller.

“Nick Bosa, Von Miller, and Khalil Mack, I watched those guys heavily throughout college,” Anderson said.

The linebacker put up some big numbers for the Crimson Tide, racking up 34.5 sacks through three seasons, good enough to win the SEC Defensive Player of the Year in both 2021 and 2022. Before that, he helped lead Alabama to a national championship in 2020.

However, there was a time where Anderson wasn’t even sure if he liked football, but there was one moment that changed everything when he was a sophomore in high school.

“I had a new coach, honestly one day he had me cry in the weight room because I couldn’t lift the weight and he told me to go down to the last rack and then after that my whole mentality and my whole mindset for the game, my passion for the game changed,” Anderson said.

After that, Anderson started loving the game, having a passion for what he was doing.

“It got to the point where I’m challenging him at practice like ‘are we going to let practice go by like that with no pads’ and that’s when I started embracing the game and loving the game and having passion for it,” Anderson said.

The players he plays against have a large amount of respect for Anderson and what he does, too.

“He was the toughest player that I played against he brings out everything in a player for him being who he is and I think he’s been the best player in college football since he stepped foot on campus at Alabama. Just preparing for a guy like that, he is the most respected player that I played against,” said Texas running back Bijan Robinson, who matched up last fall when the Crimson Tide faced the Longhorns in an early-season game.

Projected to be picked in the top five, it is unlikely that Anderson will be a Buffalo Bill, but he is sure to be a future star in the NFL.

Aidan Joly joined the News 4 staff in 2022. He is a graduate of Canisius College. You can see more of his work here.

Josh Reed is an award-winning journalist who has served as News 4’s Sports Director since 2015. See more here.