The trade of Evans still makes no senseAugust 12th, 2011 at 5:25 pm by Paul Peck under 4 Warn Weather
I guess you can ignore my previous post. I couldn’t have been more wrong. But the reasons I cited now appear to be the reasons why the Bills did in fact trade Lee Evans.
Let me first say that I hate this deal. I hate that a good player is gone, that nothing is coming in return and that message it sends to the current players and fans.
But first, let me try to explain why the Bills did this. It’s based on talking to people around the team, league and obvious observations. First off, there is young depth at the position. While Johnson, Jones, Nelson, Easley, Roosevelt and even Davis have no longevity of production, they are talented players who have shown flashes. The Bills could not keep all of them, and I think that was a big factor. I’ve come to understand that Evans wasn’t a big fan of the current coaching staff. That’s not uncommon when a new regime comes in and makes changes. Chan Gailey had alluded to Evans’ inability (or desire) to go across the middle and run various routes. Maybe Gailey really didn’t want him, and didn’t want him stealing time from the young guys. Logic will also tell you that maybe Evans’ best days are behind him. He has not been productive the last two years, and is already 30 years old. Did Ryan Fitzpatrick’s limitations, especially when it comes to the long ball, mean having a deep threat like Lee unnecessary? Money is always a factor, although Evans’ $3.25 million salary is neither cumbersome or a problem for a team way under the cap.
So those appear to the logical reasons, or the ones the Bills convinced themselves are why the trade was a good idea.
But I still hate this deal. First off, how can anyone put the blame on Lee for the past two years (or his entire career) when he never really played with a top quarterback? I would love to have seen what he could establish with Fitz. Lee can still play, still get deep, still make big catches and still threaten defenses. So why let that go? Why now? If they got a starting player in return, maybe. But now? There is no way anyone can tell me the Bills are better than they were yesterday without Lee. The Bills barely have enough good players, so why get rid of one of them? So you have depth at receiver. That’s good. But none of those guys, even Johnson, have ever done anything for more than one season. That’s a big, and unnecessary risk they’re taking. Why do it, when you might have a chance to be a surprise team is the defense is greatly improved?
I enjoyed dealing with Evans over the years. I admit I even felt sorry for him having to play with such awful quarterbacks on such bad offenses. But good for him. He goes to a good team with a good QB and he might just win a Super Bowl. One that we’ll all be watching again from our living rooms.
I like what Nix and Gailey have done, and I believe the Bills are on the right track to success. But I think they convinced themselves they’re better off with Evans, and that’s just plain wrong.