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Bills GM Talks Stefon Diggs Trade, Says He Didn't Want Contract to Be 'Albatross'

Scott Polacek

Buffalo Bills general manager Brandon Beane opened up about the front office's decision to trade star wide receiver Stefon Diggs to the Houston Texans this offseason.

"A player of his caliber, you weigh a lot of things in those situations," Beane said during an appearance on The Athletic Football Show (h/t Michael David Smith of Pro Football Talk). "But ultimately, we just talked about the cap. I don't need to go through all the reasons why we decided to go ahead and do that. I would say, from a cap standpoint, we decided just to go ahead and eat it now.

"We think we can compete and do what we need to do by eating it now. And not next year. Because if we didn't, if we tried to come up with some way to split it up too many different ways, then now it's just like that albatross hanging on your neck all year. You look at your cap and you're going, 'Look how much money we still have dead.'"

Diggs was previously signed through the 2028 season, which would have been quite the long-term decision making for the Bills considering he will turn 31 years old in November and saw a decline in production in 2023.

However, as Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk explained in April, the Texans made quite the adjustment to that contract once they finished the trade.

Houston voided all future years on his deal except the upcoming one and increased his 2024 compensation from $8.5 million to more than $22 million. From Diggs' perspective, that means he can hit the open market next offseason and perhaps line himself up for one more massive contract.

From the Texans' perspective, they don't have to worry about a long-term commitment to someone who is in his 30s and may have provided even more motivation for the four-time Pro Bowler going into the 2024 campaign.

They are legitimate Super Bowl contenders with C.J. Stroud throwing to the likes of Nico Collins, Diggs, Tank Dell and Dalton Schultz, and the best version of Diggs playing for a new deal would make them all the more dangerous to the rest of the AFC.

Diggs is coming off six consecutive years of more than 1,000 receiving yards, although his 1,183 in 2023 represents a downturn from his 1,429 in 2022 and NFL-best 1,535 in 2020. It would be reasonable to expect him to slow a step as he ages, and Buffalo moved on before that happens.

Still, Houston figures to get plenty of production from him considering he might not face that many double teams playing alongside so much offensive firepower. He was often doubled on the Bills as their clear-cut primary option, but that might not be the case for the Texans.

It may end up as something of a win-win-win for the Bills, Texans and Diggs given the contract moves.


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