If the Buffalo Bills played in the NFC, we might have already read about a trade between them and the Kansas City Chiefs. Unfortunately, the Bills aren’t leaving the AFC in the next few days, which makes them the best and yet worst trade partner for Chiefs general manager Brett Veach.
The K.C. Chiefs have struggled all season to create any consistent push on the pocket of opposing quarterbacks. There have been a couple coverage sacks, a burst here and there, but given the amounts of money being paid to form a solid defensive front (as in 25 percent of the total salary cap), the results have been abysmal.
It doesn’t help that Frank Clark has already missed multiple games, and the same can be said for Chris Jones. Both are supposed to be the pillars of a line generating multiple Pro Bowlers. Instead, fans would just love to see multiple sacks.
Mike Danna leads the team with three sacks to this point and he’s been a revelation as a second-year player who has provided far and above the level of of production and playing time expected from the former fifth round pick. He also has 7 quarterback hits and two forced fumbles and deserves to keep his position as a starter outside, even when everyone is healthy.
The Bills have the d-line depth that would be ideal for the Chiefs.
That said, the Chiefs have watched Jones and Clark sit more than stand and Jarran Reed hasn’t yet moved the needle as a new addition to the team’s defensive interior. Tershawn Wharton looked much more involved last season, that is before this past Sunday. Other players haven’t stepped up in the void either, including Derrick Nnadi or Alex Okafor.
It’s possible that health and further chemistry will cover over some of the early season struggles, but the Chiefs were reportedly interested in Whitney Mercilus which makes us believe they might not be done shopping. With the NFL’s trade deadline looming in early November, there’s still plenty of time for Veach to find a trade partner. It’s just too bad it can’t or won’t be the Bills.
Given that the Bills have the upper hand on the Chiefs after their early-season victory over K.C., there’s absolutely no chance the team will help them address a roster weakness or concern—at least without significantly overpaying. The frustration for Veach here is that Buffalo is one of a few teams who has defensive linemen to deal. As loaded as the Chiefs are on the offensive front, the Bills have the same sort of depth and overall talent on the defensive line.
If the Bills are going to pull off a pre-deadline trade, it will likely be to trade away from their d-line depth to acquire a future draft asset from a contending team. Names like Efe Obada or Mario Addison would be the sort of ideal trade target for the Chiefs. Obada is barely used by the Bills at all, but he had 5.5 sacks last year for the Panthers as a rotational pass rusher. Addison is aging and used inconsistently by the Bills but could have enough in the tank to provide meaningful reps for the Chiefs.
But none of this matters, at least for the Chiefs. The Bills know better than to help a rival, especially since the AFC goes through K.C. until proven otherwise and a Week 5 matchup isn’t the ticket there. Expect the Chiefs to go shopping with other teams knowing the Bills would be the best overall fit. Circumstances, however, just won’t allow it to happen this year.