Buffalo Bills general manager Brandon Beane can often give interviews that are pretty candid (or very much so in comparison to coach Sean McDermott). His most recent one was during the team’s preseason finale.
On Saturday, Beane joined the television broadcast booth and when asked about potential trade pieces, he gave an honest answer. Per the GM, players on his revamped defensive line have garnered trade interest from other teams.
Now one report gives us a name: Darryl Johnson.
According to MMQB‘s Albert Breer, the defensive end and special teamer has been a player that teams around the NFL have called Beane to ask about:
The Bills have defensive end depth, so teams looking for pass rush help have been calling Buffalo. Darryl Johnson’s one young player who’s elicited interest from other teams.
Johnson, a seventh-round pick of the Bills in 2019, is a difficult player to envision Beane trading.
During his tenure, Johnson has made little impact as a pass rusher. However, he has as a special teamer. Even earlier in training camp, special teams coordinator Heath Farwell notably praised Johnson.
“He’s a huge man running down on kickoffs running as fast as linebackers. You don’t see big guys running down the field like that,” Farwell said in early August.
If the Bills were to trade Johnson, there’s a chance they could turn the former seventh rounder into mid-round pick at the 2022 NFL draft. Or at least something better than a final-round selection.
But the key factor here might be McDermott. Buffalo’s coach often makes sure to mention that football is a game that has three phases. He does not overlook special teams, even when recapping game days.
The Bills might recognize Johnson’s special teams skills as too valuable to lose, but sometimes a trade is too good to pass up when you’re as deep at a position as Buffalo is along the edge.
Keep an eye on Johnson’s roster status as the Bills continue to trim their roster down to 53 players in the coming days.