Beane: Rumors of trying to trade up in draft were 'definitely overblown'

The Bills general manager said the Jets called him a couple times

Sal Capaccio
July 18, 2019 - 9:01 pm
Brandon Beane

Photo: Brian Spurlock - USA TODAY Sports


Hours leading up to the 2019 NFL Draft, the whispers and rumors started to heat up.

The Buffalo Bills were looking to trade up from their pick at No. 9 overall to No. 3, swapping with the New York Jets. Most believed they were targeting Alabama defensive tackle Quinnen Williams in that spot.

The reaction from around football, for the most part, ranged from complete skepticism that it was even true, to pretty critical of the Bills if it were. Many said there’s no way the two division rivals would engage in such a high-profile deal.

It would be pretty rare.

Others were simply upset that Bills general manager Brandon Beane would even think about moving up six spots, especially considering they may still have a shot at Houston defensive tackle Ed Oliver by staying where they were. That’s, of course, exactly what happened.  

So, what exactly transpired that night? How true were the rumors?

According to Beane, yes, the two teams talked leading up to the draft, even noting the Jets called him a couple times. But he added, “that was definitely overblown, without getting into it.”

At the time, the Jets' general manager was Mike Maccagnan. He was since fired by the club, but that night back in April, eventually, Maccagnan chose Williams himself with the No. 3 overall choice and the Bills grabbed Oliver. Before all that could happen, Beane was basically doing his due diligence and having the types of conversations almost all general managers are having. It may very well have been more about the Jets tying to trade down and looking for a partner to do it with.  

“I talked to pretty much every team between two and three days leading up to the draft,” Beane said. “So I think sometimes people are looking for anybody to move up. Yes, they called us a couple times and we had conversations. I assume like anything, if you’re really trying to move out you’re trying to drum up business, that’s the fairest way to put it.

“We thought it was a deep draft so it wasn’t something where I was thinking, ‘man, we’re really going to move up in this thing.’ But if somebody offers you something that you think is an unbelievable value for the player you’re getting, you have to look at it. But I don’t think it was something that was close to happening.”

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