Bills Rumors: ‘Bombshell’ Trade Proposal Would Send Panthers RB to Buffalo

Christian McCaffrey, Cole Beasley

Getty A salary cap expert suggested the Buffalo Bills offer the Carolina Panthers Cole Beasley (right) and some draft picks for running back Christian McCaffrey.

While mere whispers of another trade between the Buffalo Bills and the Carolina Panthers might make fans groan, the “bombshell” proposal put forth by salary cap expert Mike Ginnitti on the February 10 episode of “The Spotrac Podcast” is worth a listen.

Ginnitti suggested the Bills trade veteran wide receiver Cole Beasley, along with a third and fifth-round pick, for running back Christian McCaffrey.

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“It’s a lot of compensation,” Ginnitti said, but “the reason I threw Beasley on this list is a) I believe the Bills will move on anyway, and b) I’m bringing in Christian McCaffrey to be a quasi slot receiver, because I think that’s actually where his career is headed – no matter where he is, even if he stays in Carolina.”

While injuries have limited McCaffrey to just 10 games over the past two seasons, the former first-round pick in the 2017 NFL draft is still young at 25. If utilized correctly, especially in an offense led by quarterback Josh Allen, McCaffrey could returning to being one of the best dual threats in the league.

“I do think that’s how you keep him healthy,” Ginnitti said. “I think that’s where he has the most value right now. You keep him outside the tackles, away from those big defensive tackles. You let him go and cook in the middle of the field a little bit, and hopefully let him be a little safer in that regard and catch 75 or 80 balls, and certainly get some goal-line work as well.

“Buffalo can certainly use this. This is an upgrade position for them, both out of the backfield as a running back and in terms of that maybe third or fourth receiver.”

Bills Can Afford to Sign McCaffrey If They Trade Beasley

There’s been some talk about the Bills moving on from Beasley, who turns 33 in April, because it would give them $6.1 million in cap space. However, if Beasley is utilized in a trade, they’d save $7.6 million, per‘s Matt Parrino, which would give Buffalo the cap space to add McCaffrey.

In 2020, McCaffrey signed a four-year, $64 million deal with a $21 million signing bonus and $38 million guaranteed last year. In 2022, he will be due $8.1 million. Against Beasley’s cap hit, the two salaries would basically cancel each other out.

Beasley finished the 2021 season with 82 catches for 693 yards and one touchdown. Those numbers were down from 2020, when he caught the same number of passes, but for 967 yards and four touchdowns.

In a February 15 opinion piece in The Athletic, Joe Buscaglia suggested there’s definitely a strong case to keep Beasley next season, but perhaps only if he agrees to a pay cut.

Ginnitti’s trade proposal would be one the franchise would have to seriously consider. Alongside running back Devin Singletary, McCaffrey would give Buffalo’s offense a “true 1-2 punch,”’s Parrino said.

McCaffrey Worked Under Ken Dorsey in 2017

Ken Dorsey

BuffaloBills.comBills offensive coordinator Ken Dorsey worked with Christian McCaffrey in 2017.

If McCaffrey were to be traded to the Bills, he wouldn’t head to Buffalo as a stranger. Bills general manager Brandon Beane was with the Panthers when the franchise initially drafted McCaffrey as their eighth overall pick, and the McCaffrey spent his rookie season working under coach Ken Dorsey.

Following Brian Daboll’s exit to become the head coach of the New York Giants, the Bills promoted Dorsey to take over as the team’s new offensive coordinator. Prior to joining the Bills staff, Dorsey spent five years as the Panthers’ quarterback coach (2013-2017).

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