This Bills-Panthers Trade Sends Christian McCaffrey To Buffalo

Christian McCaffrey, Panthers, Bills
NFL Analysis Network

The Buffalo Bills continued with their winning ways in Week 5, dismantling the Pittsburgh Steelers. Buffalo did exactly what you are supposed to do as a Super Bowl favorite, taking full advantage of a Steelers team that was dealing with some injuries on defense and had a rookie quarterback in Kenny Pickett making his first career start.

The Bills have looked great thus far this season, but they know that they cannot get complacent. They will continue putting in work and looking for ways to improve their roster in the coming weeks to fortify the team for what could be a deep trip into the playoffs.

While there isn’t much to worry about on the team, as they have the No. 1 offense and No. 1 defense, the Bills aren’t going to rest on their laurels. If there is a chance for them to improve the team, they will do it. Just look at how they navigated the offseason. Buffalo didn’t necessarily need to add Von Miller, but who would say no to adding a future Hall of Famer to the team?

Could they be in a similar position ahead of the trade deadline? The news of Matt Rhule being fired by the Carolina Panthers was quickly followed by rumors of potential trade targets. One player mentioned was running back Christian McCaffrey.

McCaffrey’s market would reportedly be rather robust. There are several teams that he would make sense for, including the Bills. Buffalo’s interest in the former All-Pro running back dates back to the offseason, as they checked in on his availability months ago.

Again, do the Bills really need McCaffrey? Probably not, but if they want to improve their chances of having a reliable running game late in the season and playoffs, he would certainly provide that to them.

Devin Singletary, Zach Moss and James Cook combined barely top the production that McCaffrey has provided this season. That trio has 351 rushing yards and one score with 29 receptions for 209 yards and another score. McCaffery has 324 rushing yards and two touchdowns to go along with 26 receptions for 188 yards and another score.

Keep in mind, that production is coming from playing in an offense led by Baker Mayfield, who has the lowest quarterback rating in the NFL. Imagine what McCaffrey could accomplish playing alongside Josh Allen?

An already explosive offense would become downright impossible to stop with the addition of someone of McCaffrey’s caliber. There are some hurdles to clear when it comes to acquiring him, as his base salary is $12 million in 2023 and 2024 and $12.2 million in 2025.

A sticking point in negotiations could be how much money the Panthers eat in the deal and draft compensation. The asking price in the offseason was reportedly high and it has likely not decreased.

Seeing as they are in win-now mode, as it is Super Bowl or bust, the Bills should be willing to meet that price. Their first and third-round pick in 2023 could be enough to get the deal done as the Bills would be receiving a huge upgrade to their backfield while the Panthers receive two premium picks to jumpstart their rebuild.