Around the NFL  

 

Draft buzz: Bills unlikely to trade for Giants' No. 2 pick

Print

Ever since the Jets positioned themselves to land a quarterback with a bold move up to the No. 3 spot, the draft spotlight has shifted to Buffalo.

Will the Bills cash in their stockpile of picks by trading up to select a quarterback with one of the draft's top 10 picks for the first time in franchise history?

Appearing on Monday's edition of Good Morning Football, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport cautioned not to read too much into Bills GM Brandon Beane's history with new Giants boss Dave Gettleman.

"From what I understand, it's not going to be one of those things where they just sell out and (trade) all the way to No. 2 with the Giants," Rapoport said. "I would be at this moment surprised if that happens."

The Bills are more likely to pull the trigger if a signal-caller they like slips to No. 5 or No. 6, Rapoport added.

To a lesser extent, the speculation surrounding Buffalo's intentions applies to Miami at No. 11 and Arizona at No. 15.

Cardinals GM Steve Keim is in the market for a quarterback after being leapfrogged for Patrick Mahomes and Deshaun Watson last year. Although Keim would be open to a trade, Rapoport explained, it's most likely to happen if his coveted quarterback falls past the Dolphins and would require jumping just a few spots.

The Cards don't just like Oklahoma's Baker Mayfield, according to The MMQB's Peter King. They "love" him.

How likely is it that Mayfield will slide past Miami?

"I would be surprised at this point if the Dolphins traded up for anyone," Rapoport added, "but if a QB fell to them they might take a look."

Keim wasn't willing to sacrifice precious draft picks to ensure a first-round quarterback a year ago. Will that change if Mayfield falls to Oakland's spot at No. 10?

Around The NFL is tracking all of the latest buzz for the 83rd NFL draft, which starts Thursday at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. Check back each day for updated nuggets as we pass along whispers from around the league. Here's what we're hearing Monday:

1. The Patriots were "intrigued and impressed" by Lamar Jackson after the Louisville quarterback made a secret Top-30 pre-draft visit to New England, according to Rapoport. In the market for a developmental project behind Tom Brady, the Pats hold the Nos. 23 and 31 picks in the upcoming draft. If he's still on the board at 23, Rapoport emphasized on Monday's edition of NFL Up to the Minute, the Patriots will consider drafting Jackson as Brady's successor.

2. Still just 20 years old, USC's Sam Darnold is poised to become the youngest quarterback ever selected in the draft. A former linebacker and wide receiver, he's still developing under center. If he lands with a team desperate for a starter, will Darnold be ready to play by September?

"If that's the plan, if that's what they want to do, I'll definitely be ready come Week 1," Darnold assured The Rich Eisen Show Monday. "I think I'm going to star in whatever role the coaches want me to be in."

3. For the bulk of the past month, Darnold and Wyoming's Josh Allen have taken turns atop mock draft boards in Cleveland's No. 1 slot. The pendulum is now swinging back toward the USC star. Citing a well-connected, trustworthy source, King reported Monday that Allen will not be the Browns' first pick.

4. As expected, Jets GM Mike Maccagnan isn't stating a public preference for Mayfield or any other quarterback. "We like him as a player like we like some of the other quarterbacks," Maccagnan said of Mayfield. "He's got some very good skills, both ability-wise and from an intangible standpoint."

5. Starting Monday, per NFL Network's James Palmer, the Broncos are going through hypothetical scenarios that involve trading out of the draft's No. 5 spot. While most speculation has centered on the possibility of John Elway trading down to collect picks, he's also open to a trade up.

6. Try as he might, Seahawks coach Pete Carroll can't make the Earl Thomas trade rumors disappear. Although the home-state Cowboys have been the team most connected to the All Pro safety, NFL Network's Jane Slater suggested the team might opt to wait a year before pursuing Thomas in free agency. Considering the cost in salary and draft capital -- Seattle's asking price is reportedly a first- and third-round pick -- a draft-day trade no longer seems likely for Thomas.

7. Ever since the Cowboys released Dez Bryant, mock drafters have been sending wide receivers to Dallas in the middle of the first round. While Slater wouldn't be surprised to see D.J. Moore, Calvin Ridley or Courtland Sutton selected at No. 19 overall, she points out that linebacker is a position of greater need. In fact, the team's brass views Boise State linebacker Leighton Vander Esch as "Brian Urlacher 2.0," per Slater.

8. The agent for Rasheem Green sent a letter to NFL general managers, Rapoport reported, clarifying a combine MRI that appeared to show the USC defensive end's ACL as "wavy." Green did not receive treatment on the knee in college and was not requested at pre-draft medical rechecks.

After examining Green this week, per the letter, Texans team doctor Walter Lowe deemed the ACL graft "intact" and described the knee as "stable and performing at a very high level."

Green is viewed as a Day 2 draft prospect.

9. Another pass-rushing prospect with injury concerns is Florida State's Josh Sweat, who had surgery on his ACL, MCL an PCL in college. Some teams have flagged his knee, moving him down or off their boards, Rapoport reported, via sources informed of the situation. Other teams, however, have told Rapoport that they are comfortable with the knee in the short as well as the long term.

Performing without a brace, Sweat put on a show at the Combine in February, leading one scout to describe his workout as "freakish." It's worth noting, per Rapoport, that Sweat did not practice every day in college, a schedule that would be a concern if it carries over to the pro ranks. The Giants are a team to watch, as their team doctor performed Sweat's surgery. In addition to New York, the FSU star has visited the Saints, Redskins and Titans.

10. The Buccaneers will have a parrot reveal a Day 3 selection from the pirate ship at Raymond James Stadium. Along with Zsa Zsa, a Catalina Macaw, the draft will feature 49ers draft picks submitted by R2-D2 and Chewbacca of Star Wars fame. Who's going to deliver the news to meticulous NFL Network draft analyst Mike Mayock?

Print