I think the biggest victor in these deals is quarterback Tyrod Taylor. Will he be able to play for the entire season during the appeals process, much like Tom Brady did before his 2016 suspension for Deflategate? Watkins torched the Chiefs that Sunday, catching six passes for 158 yards and two touchdowns, all of it in the first half.
The Bills decided in May that they would let Watkins test free agency in 2018 rather than exercising the $13.3 million injury guarantee that comes with his option. But it reflects McDermott taking the long view more than past regimes did.
Goodwin will see Watkins and Woods two-times per year in the NFC West after signing a 2-year, $6 million contract with the San Francisco 49ers. I don't want to put the pressure on me, I don't want to put it on his agents, I don't want to put it on him. For Buffalo, they can't be ignored, because they look like the main motivation for these moves.
Buffalo Bills general manager Brandon Beane said Friday afternoon that he doesn't like the word "untouchable" as it pertains to the trade status of players on his team.
The moves were made day after Buffalo opened its preseason with a 17-10 loss to Minnesota. Buffalo will now have two picks in each of the first three rounds of the 2018 NFL Draft.
You could argue that middling it year after year, trying to appease the fan base and never bottoming out, has held the Bills back over the years, costing them more chances to pick near the top of the draft and get their franchise quarterback.
Watkins wasn't their guy to begin with. They have the Rams second-round pick and the Eagles third-round pick in addition to their own choices in those respective rounds. He'll join second-round rookie Zay Jones as Taylor's likely top targets.
In the final year of his rookie deal, Watkins could have left the Bills with just a third-round comp pick at the most - or he could have had a good season and the Bills could have franchised or re-signed potentially one of the league's most talented receivers. Ronald Darby was basically the team's top corner, and played a big part in that.