Beane: Trading for Diggs was 'the right move for us'


The Buffalo Bills have been quite active this offseason, giving the fans and media plenty to talk about during the low points of this coronavirus stoppage.

While many of the additions the Bills have made to the roster for the 2020 season have not been too flashy, the biggest move the team made was the acquisition of wide receiver Stefon Diggs from the Minnesota Vikings. As part of the deal, the Bills sent their 2020 first round pick (22nd overall) to the Vikings, as well as a 2020 fifth round pick, a 2020 sixth round pick and a 2021 fourth round pick to get Diggs and a 2020 seventh round pick back from Minnesota.

In addition to the Diggs move, the Bills made some quality signings on the defensive side of the ball, adding the likes of defensive end Mario Addison, defensive tackles Quinton Jefferson and Vernon Butler, and linebacker A.J. Klein.

Bills general manager Brandon Beane has been the conductor of all these moves, and he will continue to orchestrate the team as the NFL Draft quickly approaches on Thursday, April 23 through Saturday, April 25. However, this year's draft will be an all virtual draft with teams not allowed to gather for the draft at their facilities. The COVID-19 pandemic is forcing the NFL to conduct its draft with team personnel making the picks in the comfort of their own home.

Beane took some time on Monday to join Howard Simon and Jeremy White to discuss the unique draft preparations, as well as the acquisition of Diggs, and more.

Here is some of what he had to say:


Beane on the team's adjustments to prepare for the NFL Draft:

"We had to get used to technology and some of the things that you knew you had but you never really used that much. Video conferencing, FaceTime have really - I told the guys the other day on the media call that when I left the combine that if I had known that Zoom was so big or Microsoft Teams, I would have bought stock. But that's the first thing is reaching out to each players. Obviously we don't get these 30 visits, so splitting it up and making sure we have enough of our people connecting with as many players as we can, and then doing our draft meetings. All of our scouts are in their remote homes, so we've had to adjust. In today's world, we'll take that opportunity with what's going on. We'll still be fine. We'll get to the right answer here within a couple of weeks."


Beane on how the coronavirus will affect certain players' draft stock:

"I feel like the guys that we have [ranked], whether we still had that first round pick or where we will be picking at 54, there's still a little bit that we're still doing, but I think later in the draft you may see [some players drop]. Especially guys that were non-combine guys, maybe that suffered an injury this year, that every team doesn't have a clear medical view of where the player is in their rehab or are they fully back to health and stuff like that. All teams are trying to get with their medical people or their agent to get images, like if they had a should repaired or a knee [injury] or anything like that. I think some of those guys who didn't get a pro day and were non-combine invites, I can see where some of those [players] may suffer a little bit."


Beane on the reasoning for the trade of  Diggs:

"We're always trying to look for more [on offense]. At the end of the day, we were in the market during the season last year [for a wide receiver]. We were in on several of the ones, and when I say, 'in on' we were at least talking to that [general manager] about some of the receivers that got traded, and then also some like Stefon that teams were not willing to part with him. So we did feel that where our offense that we still needed that guy opposite of John Brown that we just didn't have. That was one of the things, whether it was free agency, whether it was via trade or this draft that we thought we needed to answer. The more and more we looked at it with free agency versus the draft versus a trade, we felt like this was the right move for us."


Beane on Diggs fitting in to the Bills' locker room:

"He's a very competitive guy is what the research we have on him. He would be the first one to probably tell you that maybe there were some times where maybe he should have taken a different approach, but that's all of us. That's me as well, and that competitive fire - we have guys on our team where the competitive fire will spill over at times. At the end of the day, this guy practices hard, he trains hard, he wants to win, he's a competitor, he is a pro. Like all of us, not everybody is perfect and there's things that we will want to make sure fit here, but we felt very comfortable with who Stefon Diggs was with all of our recon, and we are looking forward to bringing him in to our locker room once we can get back to football."


Beane on the prospects of winning the AFC East:

"The Buffalo Bills have not won the division since 1995. Until you do it, you haven't accomplished anything. It's really the same mantra as when people are doubting you and saying you can't win. We have to ignore any noise, whether it's positive or negative, because the media, the fans, the national world don't affect what happens on Sundays. It's within our building - how we play, how we practice - all the things that we do is what will happen. That's the goal here, and we have to remind ourselves that Tom Brady left, but New England has dominated the AFC East. Us, the [New York] Jets and the [Miami] Dolphins, we're all still chasing New England, and until one of us beats them, they're still the champ. That's what we have to look forward to is battling the Dolphins and Jets to try and overtake New England."


You can listen to the entire interview below: