Published: Sat, August 12, 2017
Sport | By Gary Shelton

Sammy Watkins Traded To Rams; Bills Acquire Jordan Matthews In Separate Trade

Sammy Watkins Traded To Rams; Bills Acquire Jordan Matthews In Separate Trade

After some wheeling and dealing, the Browns ended up with three first-round picks in the 2017 draft (including the top overall selection), but they also loaded up on future assets.

Not even a minute later, the Bills released details of a second trade, this one with the Philadelphia Eagles. The team traded cornerback Ronald Darby to the Philadelphia Eagles for wide receiver Jordan Matthews and a third round pick in the 2018 NFL Draft.

So what exactly did the Bills get out of all this? With the regular-season rapidly approaching, we'll take a look at what we could expect from each team.

Watkins enters the 2017 season on the final year of his contract after the Bills declined his fifth-year option earlier this offseason.

It's not hard to see why the Bills might not be thrilled with him.

The 24-year-old has 17 career touchdown receptions and averages 65 receiving yards a game, 24th-best among active players.

When he was on the field, though, Watkins was a stud. (That's insane, especially over 96 targets.) Among the 14 wide receivers in 2015 to gain 100 or more Reception NEP, Watkins's 60 receptions were the fewest by 9 catches.

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Watkins is moving to a new offense and unproven quarterback, which might not be the ideal proving ground for a talented athlete hoping to prove his worth. Jordan Matthews is a big slot receiver and per PFF was the seventh-ranked wide receiver in target percentage when in the slot with 22.2 percent - right behind Larry Fitzgerald (22.8 percent).

And while foot injuries have limited him to 21 games the past two seasons, he's reportedly back to 100 percent after undergoing surgery last January.

"Definitely surprised", said quarterback Tyrod Taylor. Robert Woods, the former USC standout and a polished three-year National Football League wide receiver, was added to supply professionalism and reliability.

Watkins and Matthews will both become unrestricted free agents in March. It could look something like the Tennessee Titans of last season, though similar efficiency is certainly not guaranteed. As players and coaches, they coach and we play.

Buffalo's starting receivers weren't the only two to leave the team. He'll now be replaced by E.J Gaines. He beat Sean Smith over the top for a 48-yard catch, tip-toed the sidelines for a third-down conversion, caught a 28-yard touchdown over his back shoulder, outmuscled Ron Parker to haul in another deep ball in double coverage and leapt over Smith for a 21-yard touchdown that stunned the opposing crowd. Gaines, when healthy, can be a strong corner.

The to-do list was daunting as the Rams trudged off the field at the Coliseum on New Year's Day to end the 2016 season.

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