November 23, 2017

Bills make pair of deals with focus on winning 'today and tomorrow'

12 August 2017, 10:45 | Joan Schultz

Watkins will now be playing for the Rams

Watkins will now be playing for the Rams

The trades set the Bills up to replace quarterback Tyrod Taylor, to whom McDermott and ownership in Buffalo are noncommittal, with this draft deck in April 2018: two first-round picks, two second-round picks, two third-round picks.

The Bills were looking at competing for second place in the AFC East at best before making some big trades on Friday, but after the deals they made, it's hard to imagine them winning more than five or six games this season. He was easily the most dynamic receiver on the roster, and the Bills are left with slot receiver Jordan Matthews as their new number one.

Here is a sampling of some of the funnier tweets about the trade.

The additional picks provide General Manager Brandon Beane assets in a draft that looks like it will have several top-end quarterback prospects. Many fans are glad that he is gone, as they are exhausted of watching Watkins sit on the bench with injuries.

"LA got very serious about Sammy [Watkins] and Philadelphia got very serious about Ronald [Darby]", Beane said. If we're throwing in the towel, we're not trying to get a starting receiver back. The Bills declined his fifth-year option for 2018 - call it writing on the wall, if you will - allowing him to hit the open market next offseason. In three seasons with the Eagles Matthews compiled 225 catches for 2,673 yards and 19 touchdowns. The 2019, 2020 and 2021 salary is voidable without penalty on the final day of the 2018 league year. Though not in Watkins' class talent-wise, Matthews was productive in Philadelphia over the last three seasons. Last season, Watkins played in just eight games and totaled 430 yards and two scores on 28 catches.

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Cleveland isn't the only AFC team with a ton of premium picks in the 2018 draft. Gaines in exchange for Watkins and a 2018 sixth-round pick - to McDermott and owner Terry Pegula after the Bills' preseason loss Thursday night to the Minnesota Vikings.

He's also aware of how two new additions have the potential of setting back the team's preparedness for the start of the regular season at a time the franchise is in the midst of a 17-year playoff drought - the longest active streak in in North America's four major professional sports. Sometimes that's a day-to-day process and sometimes those are not easy decisions from a leadership standpoint.

Now, Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk speculates that Tavon Austin could be available for a trade with Watkins taking on his role with the Rams.

Some fans liked the deals, as they feel as though they will help the Bills in the long-term.

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