Bills Would've Taken Marshon Lattimore; Owners Draw Harsh Criticism
Updated May 2, 2017
By Charlie Campbell. Follow Charlie on Twitter @draftcampbell.
One of the shocking quarterback trades in the 2017 NFL Draft was the Kansas City Chiefs moving up from the 27th-overall pick to the Buffalo Bills' 10th selection in order to select Texas Tech quarterback Pat Mahomes. The Bills moved down and took LSU cornerback Tre'Davious White while also picking up the Chiefs' 2018 first-round pick. Sources with Buffalo say that if the Bills had not done the trade, they would have selected Ohio State cornerback Marshon Lattimore with the 10th-overall choice.
The day after the draft, Bills general manager Doug Whaley was fired along with the entire staff of the college scouting department. Sources say that Whaley didn't see it coming and the reports that he didn't get along with new head coach Sean McDermott were untrue. However, staffers think that McDermott went to ownership to push for his own guy being installed as the general manager. Team sources say that if Whaley had known what was coming, he probably would not have done the trade and would have taken Lattimore with the 10th pick. As it stands, the new Bills' general manager will have two first-round picks in their debut draft.
Sources from other teams around the league say they think the Bills made a big mistake in firing the entire scouting staff. They can understand that the new ownership and head coach might prefer to have their own guy at general manager rather than the one they inherited, however, other teams say that the Bills had a lot of good area scouts to go with a good director of college scouting in Kelvin Fisher. They say the Bills have a talented roster, and firing Fisher with all of those scouts was an unnecessary mistake by Buffalo.
In speaking with a general manager and scouting directors at other teams, they say that it will be tough to put together an entire college staff. They believe that Buffalo is going to get blocked regularly by other teams for speaking to their scouts and it will difficult to find good quality scouts for each territory along with national scouts, combine scouts, scouting assistants, etc. That general manager and scouting director said this move illustrates that the Bills' new owners, Terrence and Kim Pegula, don't really know what they are doing in terms of running a NFL franchise.