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NFL Draft: How far can the Buffalo Bills trade up using only 2021 picks?

Matt Warren is Associate Director of NFL coverage for SB Nation and previously covered the Bills for Buffalo Rumblings for more than a decade.

The Buffalo Bills have never picked this late in the first round without trading away their first pick. Because of their excellent finish in the 2020 AFC Championship Game, they are picking 30th this April. Naturally, fans are wondering how high they can trade up and general manager Brandon Beane isn’t known for staying put.

The Bills hold picks 30, 62, and 93 in the first three rounds of the draft. They don’t have picks in the fourth round due to previous trades, so those three top picks are the only ones with any real value in the first-round trade up conversation other than late-round picks to make up the last bit of ground.

According to the old Jimmy Johnson Trade Value Chart, those first three picks are worth 620, 292, and 128 points for a grand total of 1040 points. That equates to roughly the 15th overall pick. Buffalo would have to throw in a fifth rounder and get back a sixth rounder from the New England Patriots at 15 to even-steven the deal.

In the new model, designed by Rich Hill at Pats Pulpit, those top three picks are worth 196.31, 83.98, and 42.07 points for a total of 322.36. That almost gets Buffalo to the 14th pick, which Buffalo could get to by throwing in their sixth round selection in 2021 in order to get ahead of New England and trade with the Minnesota Vikings.

So in this scenario, Buffalo would trade every one of their Day 1 and Day 2 picks plus a Day 3 selection to draft one player. I don’t see it as particularly likely, but there are the numbers for you to work with.