Bills trade Sammy Watkins to Rams, get Jordan Matthews from Eagles

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Three years after using two first-round draft picks and a fourth-round draft pick to acquire him, the Bills are moving on from Sammy Watkins.

Watkins, the talented but so far disappointing wide receiver, has been traded to the Rams. To replace him, the Bills have acquired receiver Jordan Matthews from the Eagles.

The Bills announced that they’ve shipped Watkins and a sixth-round draft pick to the Rams for cornerback E.J. Gaines and a second-round draft pick. Separately, the Bills announced that they sent cornerback Ronald Darby to the Eagles for Matthews and a third-round draft pick.

The twin trades come out of left field and are significant for all three teams involved. But it’s the Bills who are making the biggest change, with the new regime cutting ties with Watkins, whom the previous regime considered a franchise cornerstone. This represents a significant change in Buffalo, and a pretty big change in L.A. and Philly as well.

72 responses to “Bills trade Sammy Watkins to Rams, get Jordan Matthews from Eagles

  1. The Sammy Watkins experiment that never should have been. Guy just can’t put it together and keep it together. There was talk of Detroit drafting him in the final days leading up to the draft. Thank goodness we dodged that bullet. Good luck in lipstick city!

  2. Eagles can afford to lose Matthews especially at the end of contract. Unfamiliar with Darby, but improvement at CB does not take much.

  3. This makes the Eagles the favorites to win the NFC East. Zeke Elliott’s suspension dooms Dallas, and the Eagles almost always beat the NY midgets.

  4. For the last and hopefully final time they didn’t trade two first round picks to get Sammy Watkins. One of those first round picks was Sammy Watkins. They used the following years and that years to move up four spots to Cleveland to get their first round pick. If they had trade two first round picks for an established NFL player then that would have been two first round picks.

  5. Huh What? That’s a lot of moving parts. Watkins and a 6 for Gaines and a 2nd…. Rams win that trade. Bills trade Darby (why?) and get back Jordan Matthews and a third rounder. Eagles get a quality corner that they desperately need. Positive for the Bills is their 2018 draft, two #1’s, two #2’s and two #3’s. Not sure what this all means for the 2017 Bills.

  6. I am a fan but there are many ways to get to 7-9. They can go 6-1 and 1-8, 1-7 and 6-2, 2-5, 5-4. Actually hoping for better by going 4-3 and 3-4-2. We have seem many combinations through the years.

    All joking aside, glad to see they are making moves and at least trying to mix things up.

  7. ANDDDD everyone on this site DISliked my comment when I said Bolden was better then Sammy…. looks like I get the last laugh!!!!! Sammy isn’t worth it!!!

  8. I sort of get the Watkins to LA trade, but the Darby for Matthews trade doesn’t seem to make sense for either the Bills or the Eagles. For the Eagles, who have a young developing QB, why trade away a young talented receiver? On the Bills side, they basically swap receivers and weaken a defensive backfield which just lost Gilmore. SMH.

  9. Seems like a good trade for everybody; Matthews doesn’t have the ceiling of Watkins, but can stay healthy, plus the Bills get some reasonably high picks to rebuild for the years after Brady’s gone. Philly gets an improvement to their awful CBs, and they already signed Jeffery/Torrey Smith in the offseason, so WR has some talent at this point. The Rams get a WR who’s often injured, but, if he manages to be healthy, he’s their first legitimate #1 WR prospect in years.

    I mean, there are issues for everyone (LA and Philly lose a 2nd/3rd, Buffalo’s secondary is worse), but everybody kind of wins here, right?

  10. Watkins trade is great for Buffalo. They had decided to move on from him after this year yet still got back a 2nd round pick. Not sure what the Rams are thinking… nothing new there!

  11. Looks like the Eagles decided to ship Matthews out and get something for him since he’s gonna walk at the end of the season anyways. They probably thought that getting a starting CB in exchange for Matthews and a 3rd rounder was going to be better than letting him walk and getting a compensatory 4th-rounder at best. At least Darby is a solid young corner who is a fast, aggressive tackler who will fight for the ball. I see it as a win-win for both teams.

  12. Now the bills have ammo for qb and wr next year. I liked Sammy but I believe this team finally has a plan and I’ll give them the benefit if the doubt..
    As far as Darby, tre white is the new number 1 and has done nothing short of impress

  13. Looks like the Bills have metered the derby for the number 1 pick in the 2018 NFL Draft. Gonna be tough, though, they could still win a couple against the Jets….

  14. Has there ever been 3 teams from the same division with the first 3 picks of the draft?

    17 years and no end in sight. 🙂

    #CurseOfFlutieLives

  15. The Rams basically acquired Watkins on a 1 year rental deal. The Bills declined to pick up the 5th year option on his rookie contract so this year is the final year of his contract. In 2018 he either hits free agency or gets a new contract from the Rams.

  16. I guess if you look at what they got now compared to yesterday they still got a really good WR and a decent CB which is what they had before but now they got a 2nd and a 3rd round pick next year so I like that

  17. Seems like a good trade for everybody; Matthews doesn’t have the ceiling of Watkins, but can stay healthy, plus the Bills get some reasonably high picks to rebuild for the years after Brady’s gone. Philly gets an improvement to their awful CBs, and they already signed Jeffery/Torrey Smith in the offseason, so WR has some talent at this point. The Rams get a WR who’s often injured, but, if he manages to be healthy, he’s their first legitimate #1 WR prospect in years.

    I mean, there are issues for everyone (LA and Philly lose a 2nd/3rd, Buffalo’s secondary is worse), but everybody kind of wins here, right?

    Tre white is buffalos 1st cb plus the new guy from the rams.. idk if their secondary is worse. ESP if they generate a pass rush

  18. This was a team built by pretty awful personnel. Now the new guys have 6 picks in the first 3 rounds to get who they want. Smart move. This season will stink, but best case scenario sammy plays 16 games this year and got the bills 1,200 yds, they still end up with 9 wins then sammy is a free agent next year and we get nothing for him. He is injury prone to say the least, a 2nd round pick (most likely high second round) and a solid #2 receiver is worth it.

  19. When you get a first round pick in the year you supposedly traded 2 first round picks to get Sammy Watkins and you only had one each year, how did you trade two first round picks? The logical dilemma.

  20. Watkins will be missed and IS elite when healthy but this sets us up for the future nice. Six picks in the top 100 next year. CB Gaines and WR Mathews are a bonus.

    Sammy best of luck kid.

    #billsmafia

  21. I love this trade for the Eagles. Yes giving up a third is hard, but we have three fourth rounders this year, easy ammo to move back up into the third if we need to. Our D line and linebackers were gonna be the strength of our D but our corners were our weakest spot. Now we have a solid corner to play and when we get Sidney Jones back, two young good corners for the forseaeable future. Team is coming together nicely

  22. Stop all the nonsense comments about any team getting fleeced. You don’t know until later in the season. All you clowns came to the Dolphins stories commenting about how they got fleeced by Philly and it turns out Byron Maxwell started slow but improved to a top ranked Starter and Kiko Alonzo played at a Pro-Bowl level for under $900K. You just never know… Personally, I think the Bills did the right thing here. Sometimes players just need a different environment to blossom and with a limited roster you just move on. I present you with Welker, Izzo, Gillislee, Hogan, etc. All former Dolphins that they moved on from.

  23. milkmandanimal ,

    Except Matthews is coming off of an injury that’s kept him out most of the off-season. Seems like Darby didn’t click with the new staff because he’s been above average so far in a scheme with Rex Ryan that put a lot on CBs’ plate in his first 2 years, and they traded him basically for the 3rd round pick and to take on Matthews as a throw-in since Philly clearly didn’t see him in their future with their off-season additions and draft. I understand why Buffalo got rid of Watkins due to his injury history, but they could have done better than that which they got, which is basically nothing.

  24. Remember when Atlanta traded HOFer Favre to the Packers?
    How about when Philli cut HOFer Chris Carter?
    How about Randy Moss going to the Pats and breaking all of those records? or Corey Dillon?
    Good luck to these guys on their fresh starts.

  25. Production vs. potential. The Man of Glass will have less yards than Matthews… Matthews is solid as a rock, and consistently productive. Watkins has a world of talent, a workout wonder, but always hurt, spoiled and entitled, and in the end a non-producer and a bust. Solid move for once by the Bills.
    Plus, Goff will never be able to reach Watkins downfield on the rare occasions he plays; he can’t even be a decoy, because why double cover someone when the QB can’t reach him deep regardless?
    Bills win this one.

  26. My favorite part was when Doug Whaley left Watkins’ pro day early so they could get an early dinner. Whaley – “I said to one of our scouts, ‘What else do we need to see?’ And we left. We left before the workout was over, because we knew.”

  27. I hate these publicity stunt moves where teams, at the expense of their own success, cut or trade players who became noteworthy during a previous regime.

    In what way is this a good move for Buffalo?

  28. What’s wrong with the spams? Bustkins sucks, has spent more time in rehab than on the field but the spams actually gave something up to get him? Why? The jills were never going to resign him. If they could have waited a season they would have gotten him for nothing.

  29. This was a stupid move all around. The Bills traded for lesser players and mid-round picks…but they’re still not playing for the top pick by keeping McCoy and Tyrod. IF they were tanking, acquiring picks and playing 2017 for the top pick…fine. But that’s not the plan. They don’t seem to have a plan…at least not a good one.

  30. Its hard to argue the Bills didn’t win this one. They got back two players that are arguably just as good if not better then the two they gave up, and received two high draft picks. I loved the thought of what Watkins can do on the field, but it was starting to become clear he would never live up to potential. Darby is a man to man corner but the bills moved to a cover 2 scheme where they don’t really need that type of corner.

  31. Ronald Darby is a true number 1. PFF had him as 5th best cb his rookie year n like 28th last year. He sticks to receivers like glue just doesnt make any attempt on the ball. Which is weird bc that is what shwartz wants from his corners. I dunno Darby is probably worth a first n Matthews brings that to a 3rd. So the values right I just think it hurts Wentz. Those 2 were beyond close. Starting charities together, going on missionary trips,going to church, hanging out. These 2 were legitimately like brothers. The Eagles should b doing what ever they can to make Wentz comfortable. Taking away his most reliable target and security blanket on the field n bf off it does the opposite.

    They better not b expecting agholor to replace him. The guy has dropped 6 passes this week including a walk in 2pt conversion last night. I hope they made the move bc of how Mack Hollins played last night n Marcus Johnson playexd all off season. Nelson cant b counted on.

  32. whatever it takes to get cb Patrick Robinson, aka TOAST, out of philly is a good sign!
    We loved you Jmatt, but you were most likely walking at the end of this year… we forced you into a wr1 for almost all your years, you would’ve cost too much. Good luck in Buf, say hey to Shady and tell him to leave better tips!

  33. This is a stupid trade for the Eagles that was only completed because they have so mismanaged the CB position. The Bills stole the deal with Matthews and a 3rd. They got a really solid WR and a mature team leader. As an Eagles fan, I hate it.

  34. Oh by the way…both guys the Bills acquired are FAs next year. So rent-a-players that aren’t quite as good as what they got rid of to help get them to 6 wins this year and a 2nd and 3rd round pick next year… And some Bills fans think they got the better end of the deal? Without a plan of gutting the team and playing for a top draft pick next year, this just wasn’t a smart move.

  35. So the Bills traded Wr Sammy Watkins and CB Ronald Darby and we got Wr Jordan Matthews and CB E.J. Gaines plus we got an extra 2nd and 3rd round pick. Is it just me or did the Bills win out. Now the Bills have 2 first 2 second and 2 3rd round picks next year!!!!!

  36. Now Bills fans can stop defending Watkins and start dissing him, because that’s just how they roll in Buffalo.

  37. Great trade for the Rams , they have been searching for a deep wr since Torry Holt left ,this will be Tavon Austins last year as he sucks and is way over paid thanks to Fisher. They can cut him and take a 5 million cap hit after this year and sign Watkins if he proves worthy .

  38. joetoronto says:
    August 11, 2017 at 3:37 pm
    Now Bills fans can stop defending Watkins and start dissing him, because that’s just how they roll in Buffalo.
    ________________________________________________________________________________________
    I always believed Sammy Watkins had the skill to be a special player with a real QB. This Bill’s fan hopes he finds some health and shows some of that talent.

  39. joetoronto says:

    August 11, 2017 at 3:37 pm

    Now Bills fans can stop defending Watkins and start dissing him, because that’s just how they roll in Buffalo.
    _____________________________________________________________________________________________________________
    Nobody rolls like you do. No hope, no class and no team.

  40. All you Bills fans saying ‘Good Watkins is garbage’….

    All the Dolphin fans are saying “Good that guy burned our corners repeatedly”. Hope Mathews is the answer.

  41. Trading up To get AHEAD of Oakland for the right to draft Watkins and skip Mack.

    That has got to be depressing for Buffalo fan.

    Mack is a two time all pro in 3 seasons including DPOY.

    Watkins is a foot injury waiting to happen. Bummer.

  42. beernap says:
    August 11, 2017 at 1:02 pm
    Eagles can afford to lose Matthews especially at the end of contract. Unfamiliar with Darby, but improvement at CB does not take much

    ————–
    Darby is a solid starter in the league.. young.. has the chance to become a superstar.. has a DROY under his belt

  43. I kind of get the Watkins trade, especially if he was going to walk for free next spring anyway…But Darby? Not a good move to weaken your secondary with Brady and Cutler 2X each plus Carr, Rivers, Ryan, Newton, Winston, Brees, Luck and even Dalton on your opposing QB docket.

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