General manager Brandon Beane said Friday he had been receiving trade calls about Watkins since Beane was hired in May, days after the Bills declined Watkins' fifth-year contract option for 2018.
A day after the Eagles' preseason opener in Green Bay they have made a big roster move. Both of the deals might give a good sign of the direction that the Buffalo Bills are heading in for the future. The young corner has 137 tackles, two interceptions, and 33 pass breakups in the last two years.
At least the Bills have a few more draft picks to look forward to - results pending.
Matthews, like Watkins, faced his own battle with injuries. His numbers were outstanding in just 13 games two years ago (60 catches for 1,047 yards and nine touchdowns), but it was his lone 1,000-yard season. As a result of the trade, Buffalo avoids Watkins' enormous payday.
Former Vanderbilt Commodores wide receiver Jordan Matthews, who spent the first three years of his career with the Philadelphia Eagles, was traded to the Buffalo Bills on Friday afternoon in a surprising deal. In exchange, the Bills sent away cornerback Ronald Darby, according to ESPN.
And if 2017 second-rounder Sidney Jones fully recovers from his torn Achilles (which may not be until 2018), he and Darby could form an impressive starting cornerback duo - something the Birds have lacked for far too long. The Bills also have just 14 players whom they've drafted, not including this year's six-player class. The reason this is confusing is because Boldin has been a slot wide receiver nearly exclusively over the last two years playing over 70 percent of his snaps there.
Despite an apparent rebuilding mode in Buffalo, Matthews should have a chance to make an immediate impact.
Matthews is arguably the greatest receiver in Vanderbilt history while Gaines played his college career at Mizzou. He had a strong rookie year, but apparently fell out of favor with new defensive-minded head coach Sean McDermott. For the 2016 National Football League season, Buffalo finished with a record of 7-9 overall but seemed to have a roster that may have been on the rise.