AFC Rumors: Bills, Dolphins, Jets, Patriots

     

Bills

  • The Athletic’s Joe Buscaglia writes the sudden linking of the Bills to Clemson RB Travis Etienne, even potentially trading up to get him, screams smokescreen to him.
  • He just doesn’t think the positional value makes sense for Buffalo compared to their other needs and that they won’t draft over Devin Singletary and Zack Moss with a first-round pick. 
  • Based on past tendencies at the position, Buscaglia lists Penn State DE Jayson Oweh, Washington DE Joe Tryon, Miami DE Jaelan Phillips and Georgia OLB Azeez Ojulari as potential matches for the Bills if they go defensive end at No. 30. 
  • He adds Georgia CB Eric Stokes hits a lot of thresholds the Bills look for, including arm length, and is a strong candidate for them at the end of the first round. 
  • While Florida State CB Asante Samuel Jr. isn’t as long as Buffalo typically likes for starting outside corners, Bills HC Sean McDermott worked with his father and Buscaglia thinks that familiarity and the Bills’ need for a nickel corner could push the team toward Samuel. 
  • Other cornerbacks who fit what the Bills are looking for in the second round include Georgia’s Tyson Campbell, Syracuse’s Ifeatu Melifonwu and Stanford’s Paulson Adebo
  • Bills GM Brandon Beane made some interesting comments about small school players, which has Buscaglia leaning toward Buffalo prioritizing Ohio State’s Josh Myers or Illinois’ Kendrick Green over Wisconsin-Whitewater’s Quinn Meinerz if the Bills draft a center.

Dolphins

  • CBS Sports’ Jonathan Jones says the Dolphins are signaling they’re willing to trade down again. 
  • Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald writes that one NFL front office executive who talked to the Dolphins thinks that based on that conversation Oregon LT Penei Sewell isn’t in play for them. 
  • Jackson notes the $2 million the Dolphins saved by trading G Ereck Flowers isn’t enough to sign their draft class, so it’s clear they were more worried about just moving on from him. 

Jets

  • SNY’s Ralph Vacchiano discusses the Jets’ plan with their second first-round pick at No. 23 overall, saying he’s heard new HC Robert Saleh really wants an edge rusher with this pick to rotate with free-agent additions Carl Lawson and Vinny Curry
  • However, Vacchiano points out the Jets currently have a massive void at cornerback, so to him that indicates someone like Northwestern CB Greg Newsome or Virginia Tech CB Caleb Farley could make more sense. 
  • He adds the Jets have the second pick of the second round and might have some solid prospects to choose from at edge rusher there if players like Miami’s Gregory Rousseau or Penn State’s Jayson Oweh slip out of the round. 
  • As for a running back, the Jets have been linked by some to Clemson RB Travis Etienne with either their No. 23 or No. 34 overall picks. But Vacchiano says based on OC Mike LaFleur‘s history of getting production from late-rounders and undrafted free agents at the position in San Francisco, he thinks the Jets might be willing to pass. 

Patriots

  • According to Jeff Howe, there is nothing happening between the 49ers and Patriots regarding QB Jimmy Garoppolo right now.
  • Jason La Canfora reports the Patriots have “canvassed” the possibility of moving up into the back half of the top 10.
  • Tony Pauline reports the Patriots are going to add a quarterback on draft weekend: “The Patriots will end up with a QB, either trading up if there’s one that starts to slide, trading down and taking a guy like (Stanford QB) Davis Mills, or a trade for Jimmy Garoppolo soon after the first round.”
  • CBS Sports’ Jonathan Jones thinks the Panthers and Patriots are a good match as trading partners, as that would allow Carolina to add picks while still getting a prospect they’re high on. 
  • ESPN’s Mike Reiss confirms the Patriots have spent a lot of time with the second tier of quarterbacks in this class, including Mills, Florida’s Kyle Trask and Texas A&M’s Kellen Mond. He adds Mills has a lot of traits New England has traditionally valued. 
  • A report emerged this week that indicated the Patriots talked about moving up for Ohio State’s Justin Fields.
  • Executives around the league tell ProFootballTalk that they are skeptical that New England would allow any interest about Fields to leak, though: “Three years later, no one knows why Malcolm Butler didn’t play in the Super Bowl.” 

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