As we roll into the Combine and free agency, we will see more and more mock drafts. Some will be done by pundits - many of whose knowledge of the Bills seems to involve barrels of chicken wings being pushed over Niagra Falls for some reason - and some will be done by Rumblers. Trade scenarios will abound; more than a few will come from my direction as I believe in working the draft board.
A few years ago there was extended conversation about the validity of the draft value chart. The contention was that it was used less and less. I looked at trades from 2000 onwards and it turned out that first round trade hued even closer to the chart as time went on. The exceptions to the rule were getting a team to trade out of the first round entirely (add 10%) and delayed gratification was really costly (trading next year's first for this year's second). With the rookie contract system in place we'll soon be able to look and see if the trend is constant, away or towards the chart value system. For now it is a useful guide for looking at trade scenarios.
In charting the picks for every team there are a couple of things that stood out.
11 teams are pick poor (team and missing pick):
OAK 2nd (supplemental pick)
NO 2nd (bounty penalty)
WAS 1st (has extra 5th)
IND 2nd 5th 7th
NE 4th 5th 6th (has an extra 7th)
It doesn't mean that these teams can't trade up. It does mean that some of these teams are less likely to trade up than might normally be the case and that some of them might be looking to trade down to add picks. Half of the teams in the top 6 are on this list.
7 teams are pick rich (team and extra pick)
MIA 2nd 3rd 7th (missing a 6th)
CIN 2nd 6th (missing a 7th)
MIN 4th 6th
SF 3rd 5th 6th 7th
These seven teams have the ability to move up the board a bit more easily than others. It doesn't mean that the teams will want to move up but for trade scenarios they do have more flexibility than others. This doesn't include any compensatory picks. However, compensatory picks have no trade value as they cannot be traded.
Total pick values by team (rounded to nearest whole number)
Trade up possibilities
Buffalo would have to trade the value of the entire 2013 draft plus extra picks from 2014 (beyond?) to trade up with either Kansas City or Jacksonville. The value of Buffalo's 2013 draft is equal to that of the Raiders #3 selection. There is zero chance of Buffalo trading up with any of these 3 teams regardless of who is on the board.
Philly: Buffalo could send 8 and 41 to Philly for 4 and 131. It's hard to see this happening for anyone other than Geno Smith and Nix, Brandon and Marrone would have to be completely sold on Smith being a sure fire starting caliber QB. From what I've read about Smith the consensus is that he's good but not without his warts. I can't imagine this sort of trade.
Detroit: Buffalo could send 8 and 73 and 104 for 5. Again, it's difficult to believe that the Bills would give up a 3rd and 4th to move up 3 slots. It is getting into the realm of possibility, though, and if Smith is on the board at 5 it can't be ruled out. Plus, Detroit is lacking a 4th, perhaps making the Lions a team willing to deal.
Cleveland: Buffalo could send 8 and 73 for 6 and 134. If Smith is on the board and Nix wants him then he might have to get Cleveland out of this slot. A new GM could well mean a new QB for the Skidmarks.
Arizona: Buffalo could send 8 and 104 and 138 for 7. Giving up a 4th and 5th to move up one slot again only makes sense for a QB. If Smith went early and the Browns took a QB it's possible that Nix might be nervous about Arizona taking a QB as well-perhaps the one Nix wants.
Trade down possiblities
Jets: The Jets could offer Buffalo 9 and 105 for 8. I can't imagine Nix taking the Jets up on it, even if he was pretty sure they weren't going to take a player he wanted at 8.
Tennessee: The Thumbtacks could send Buffalo 10, 106 and 137 for 8. If the QB run hasn't begun and if the Bills have several guys at positions of needs rated very similarly then Nix could drop back two slots.
San Diego: The Chargers could send Buffalo 11 and 78 for 8 and 138. Buffalo would swap a 5th for a 3rd in this scenario. Like many of these trade downs into the early teens it's easy to see it happening if the QB run hasn't begun or if the Bills are looking for a specific guy who is sitting about 15th on their board.
Miami: The Dolphins have picks to burn and could send Buffalo 12 and 79 for 8. That would still leave them with a pair of 2nd rounders and a 3rd. Would Nix trade with a division rival?
Tampa: The Bucs could send Buffalo 13 and 75 and 142 for 8. If they coveted a guy like Milliner to replace the departed Talib or soon to retire Barber, the Bucs might want to make a move up the board. The team does have an extra 4th so this trade would effectively ‘feel like' costing them a 3rd rounder.
Carolina: The Panthers have no 3rd round pick. They could send Buffalo 14 and 44 for 8 104 and 138. This seems highly improbable.
New Orleans: The Saints don't have a 2nd rounder. There's no way they send Buffalo basically their entire draft to move up to 8.
St Louis: The Rams could send Buffalo 16 and 46 for 8. The Rams could also send 22 and 46 and 80 for 8-which would give the rams picks 8 and 16 in the first round, though no second or third. I'd say the first scenario is the more likely of the two.
Dallas: Jones likes to deal. He could send 18, 47 and 113 to Buffalo for 8. It's worth keeping in mind that Dallas has no 7th round pick so this trade would leave the Cowboys only a 3rd, 5th and 6th. Still, Jerry does love to wheel and deal so you can't rule out a call from Big D on draft day.
Giants: New Jersey could send Buffalo 19 and 49 and 83 for 8. A first, second and 3rd to move up the board is an enormously steep price to pay. Don't look for this to happen.
Chicago: Thanks to having no third round pick, moving up from 20 to 8 would cost the Bears the value of their entire draft. That's not happening.
Cincy: The Bengals have an extra (early) second rounder. They could move up by sending Buffalo 21, 37 and 117 for 8. Cincy would still have a 2nd, 3rd, 5th, 6th and a pair of 7th rounders.
Washington: Snyder's team has the weakest set of cards in the draft. Move along.
The Vikings have an extra 4th and 6th. It's not remotely enough to move up to 8. The Colts are missing 3 picks. The Seahawks, Packers, Texans and Denver don't hav enough value in the draft this year to fly up the board. The Patriots are missing their 4th, 5th and 6th rounders and likely to move back out of the first rather than into the top 10. The Falcons and Baltimore don't have the value to move up to 8. The 49ers have lots of picks but their total value is less than that of #8.
Realistic trade partners for moving up: Detroit, Cleveland, Arizona
Realistic trade partners for moving down: Titans, Chargers, Dolphins, Bucs, Rams, Cowboys, Bengals.
Let your trade-o-riffic mocks fly!