The relationship between Buffalo Bills General Manager Brandon Beane and New York Giants General Manager Dave Gettleman is the critical fact for Bills fans to keep in mind in the wake of the New York Jets' deal to move up to the No. 3 spot in the NFL draft.
Beane worked under Gettleman for the four years in Carolina before moving to Buffalo. You can take it to the bank that Gettleman is keeping Beane fully apprised of exactly what it will take to get the Giants to deal the No. 2 pick. No doubt, that price is probably going up because of the Jets' deal, and that's not good for the Bills, as Jay Skurski lays out very well.
Why didn't the Jets make the deal with the Giants to get to No. 2 instead of No. 3? There can be only one answer: Gettleman's price was too high. But Gettleman knows the Bills have a lot more draft capital than the Jets.
Beane has not acquired all these draft picks – including trading Cordy Glenn to get No. 12 away from Cincinnati – in order to not make a trade into the top five to get his franchise quarterback.
This isn't to say he was lying Friday when he said he likes who he could get at No. 12. Sure, there's a bridge too far for Beane -- a price that he will deem too great to move up to No. 2. If that happens, then maybe he will stand pat with the mother lode of picks he has.
But you can't believe that's Plan A. Plan A is to move way up. Beane has the perfect trading partner at No. 2 in Gettleman.
Why didn't the Bills outbid the Jets to move to No. 3? One reality is the Colts surely liked the idea of moving down only three spots to No. 6, as opposed to moving down to No. 12. Now they still likely can get one of the elite players they like, if not North Carolina State edge rusher Bradley Chubb then Notre Dame super-guard Quenton Nelson. So the Bills were at a disadvantage in negotiating with the Colts. It's easy to imagine the Colts saying to Beane: We want your 2019 No. 1, too, in addition to a bunch of your picks this year. It's easy to imagine Beane thinking if I'm going to pay a huge ransom, I want to be sure to get my pick of the second QB in the draft.
Stating the obvious: Cleveland is going QB at No. 1.
Here's one way the Jets-Colts deal is really bad for the Bills: If Gettleman decides he wants a QB to be the heir to Eli Manning at No. 2. Most people reading Gettleman's tea leaves seem to think he's not going QB at No. 2. Maybe Gettleman is sending out false signals. Or maybe Gettleman isn't swooning over this year's QB class, which is not a crazy position at all.
There's still a lot of ways this could play out.
Maybe the Bills decide they really like Oklahoma's Baker Mayfield, arguably the fourth QB who will go off the board. Maybe they could move up to No. 5 with Denver and get Mayfield.
I don't think that's the case. I don't see Mayfield being the ideal stick-to-the-scheme, precision, pocket passer for Sean McDermott and Brian Daboll. I'm also sure many of you out there disagree with that, since Mayfield completed 70.5 percent of his passes last season. That's just my view.
Are McDermott and Beane head over heels in love with at least two QBs in this draft? We have six weeks to debate that question and speculate on the Beane-Gettleman conversations.