The moment the Bills benched quarterback Tyrod Taylor last season for no apparent reason, the reasons apparently became these: (1) G.M. Brandon Beane and coach Sean McDermott are determined to get a franchise quarterback; (2) they’d seen enough of Taylor to know it’s not him; (3) they wanted to see if it could be Nathan Peterman (they quickly got an answer); and (4) they’d get a franchise quarterback in the offseason by trading up in the draft.
As noted by MDS, the Bills now have two picks in each of the first three rounds of the 2018 draft, with the latest addition coming in the form of the 65th overall selection that the Bills received from Cleveland for Tyrod Taylor. And so they have more than enough capital, starting with picks No. 21 and No. 22 in round one, to make a move into the top 10.
So who will be the trade partner? The Browns have two of the first four picks; they could take any player they want at No. 1 (a quarterback makes the most sense) and then trade the No. 4 pick to Buffalo. Or the Browns could roll the dice on getting the quarterback they want at No. 4 and send the No. 1 pick to the Bills.
Other candidates for a trade with Buffalo include the Giants at No. 2, the Colts at No. 3, the Broncos at No. 5, the Jets at No. 6, the Buccaneers at No. 7, the Bears at No. 8, the 49ers at No. 9, and the Raiders at No. 10.
The ultimate move depends in part on a variety of factors, starting with which of the big five incoming quarterbacks (Josh Allen, Sam Darnold, Lamar Jackson, Baker Mayfield, Josh Rosen) the Bills fall in love, and whether and to what extent they love more than one of them. Another factor becomes which of the quarterback-needy teams in the top 10 (Broncos, Jets, maybe the Giants) secure a veteran in free agency or via trade.
However it unfolds, get ready for plenty of reports that the Bills are talking to every team in the top 10 about a trade up. Beane and McDermott realize the value of a franchise quarterback (they have their current jobs due in part to the franchise quarterback the Panthers picked seven years ago), and they seem to be determined to get one who will make the Bills contenders each and every year of the young quarterback’s career.