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Bills tried to trade up to No. 1 for Sammy Watkins

The Buffalo Bills desperately wanted Sammy Watkins.

In a fantastic behind-the-scenes video published on the team's official website, director of player personnel Jim Monos said the team tried to get all the way to No. 1 to get their receiver.

"We went with Houston right off the bat," Monos said. "We tried to go to No. 1. They weren't having it. They knew who they wanted, so we started working our way right down."

Before the Texans made their pick, general manager Doug Whaley got a call from Browns general manager Ray Farmer (holding the No. 4 pick) to see if the Bills were interested in moving up.

"Ray asks me, 'Are you still interested? And if you are, here are the specifics of what we would request to make sure we get fair value for you guys moving up," Whaley said. "... I said we'd get back to (Farmer). We obviously have to make sure our guy is there and as the pick gets closer to your pick we'll be back in touch."


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The key moment came when the Jacksonville Jaguars were on the clock. Monos admitted the Bills thought the Jags might snag Watkins.

"We had just heard so much ... that they needed a receiver. We thought that this was going to be Sammy. We knew that if Jacksonville didn't take him we had a shot," he said.

Of course, the Jags took Blake Bortles, setting up the haggling with Farmer.

After a few back-and-forths, the teams swapped first-round selections, with the Browns also getting the Bills' first- and fourth-round picks in 2015.

While parting with a 2015 first-round pick was a high price, it's a gamble Whaley was clearly prepared to make, even if it meant trying to get to the top of the draft for his man.

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