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Pollock: Will the Buffalo Bills regret trading out of first round … and making deal with Chiefs?

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Cutline: A lot of wide receivers and quarterbacks were taken by teams in the first round. But not the Bills who traded away both first round picks. Wellsville Sun photo from the draft in Detroit

By CHUCK POLLOCK, Sun Senior Sports Columnist

General manager Brandon Beane’s reputation as a drafter for the Bills was forever highlighted by his very first pick. He traded up in the opening round of the 2018 lottery to take Buffalo’s franchise quarterback, Josh Allen.

Later that round, he traded up again to take middle linebacker Tremaine Edmunds, a good but not great player.

But since then his subsequent 43 draft selections have produced mixed results … at best a grade of C+.

Then came last night and a scenario that could damage Beane’s drafting reputation for the rest of his career.

Buffalo earned the 28th overall selection of the 32 opening-round choices by losing to the Chiefs at Highmark Stadium in the playoffs’ divisional round last January.

In the face of the Bills’ massive salary cap deficit, Beane was forced to start shucking veterans from his roster. Wide receiver Stefon Diggs was traded to Houston and interior lineman Ryan Bates was dealt to Chicago and a dozen others weren’t re-signed and either left as free agents — including wide receiver Gabriel Davis and center Mitch Morris, both to Jacksonville —  or are unemployed.

Hence, with Diggs and Davis gone and Buffalo lacking a No.1 receiver, speculation was strong that in a first-round with a half-dozen quality wideouts, that’s the direction they would go.

Uhhhh, not so much.

WHEN THEIR time came to pick at 28, the Bills traded it to Kansas City for the defending Super Bowl champion’s selection at 32, the last  one of the round. Yeah, those Chiefs the ones who have beaten the Bills two of the last three years in the playoffs.

Trading with a division rival — forever a no-no — Buffalo sent the 28th pick,  the 144th selection (fourth round) and the 248th (seventh round) to KC for the 32nd pick, the 95th choice (third round) and the 221st  in the seventh.

But Beane wasn’t finished.

He then shipped the final selection of the first round and the 200th pick (sixth round) to Carolina for the 33rd overall choice (opening pick of today’s second round) and the 141st pick (fifth round).

SO, BUFFALO traded entirely out of the first round and ended up with three picks in tonight’s second and third rounds instead of one (two seconds and a third).

And if Beane makes those choices wisely, great, there are still some solid receivers and a decent crop of defensive linemen, two positions of need.

But trading with Kansas City sounds like that old fraternity paddling chant: “Thank you sir, may I have another.”

With the Bills first-round choice, the Chiefs took wide receiver Xavier Worthy of Texas, who merely ran the fastest time at the NFL combine, a 4.21 in the 40.

Coach Andy Reed sees Worthy as the newest Tyreek Hill, whose time was a fraction of a second slower than Worthy. Kansas City traded Hill to Miami two years ago due to salary cap concerns and he made the Dolphins into a playoff team.

If Worthy does a reasonable impression of Hill — KC won the last two Super Bowls without him — the AFC is in trouble.

There are concerns about Worthy’s size, 6-feet, 163 pounds and the Bills have had their own bad experience with an undersized wide receiver.

In 2005 Buffalo had no first-round pick and with their initial selection they took Miami’s Roscoe Parrish, a 5-foot-10 speedster weighing in the 160s in the second round. For all intents, he was a bust. In seven seasons he had as many touchdown receptions to go with three punt return scores and a rushing TD.

Maybe Worthy ends up being that guy and not Hill.

But if ever he scores on Buffalo — the Chiefs visit Orchard Park this season — Beane’s ears will be ringing and not with congratulations.

(Chuck Pollock, a Wellsville Sun senior sports columnist, can be reached at cpollock@wnynet.net.)

Read more from Chuck:

A look at the Buffalo Bills going into the NFL draft

Pollock on the Bonnies and the need for a defensive lineman in the NFL draft for the Bills

• O.J. Simpson left a mixed legacy … in the wrong order

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