Panthers Trade WR Kelvin Benjamin To Bills

The Panthers have traded wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin to the Bills, according to ESPN.com’s Adam Schefter (on Twitter). The buzzer beating deal comes as one of the biggest trades of the week, and that’s saying a lot for what has been a historically eventful deadline. In return, the Panthers receive Buffalo’s third- and seventh-round picks in 2018, a league source tells Joseph Person of the Charlotte Observer (Twitter link). Kelvin Benjamin (vertical)

Benjamin’s name was not involved in rumors leading up to the NFL’s Halloween trade deadline. However, it was the old connection between executive Brandon Beane and Carolina that brought the deal together. The Bills traded away one of the game’s brightest talents in Sammy Watkins earlier this year, but they have replaced him with another big target.

The Bills are off to a 5-2 start with a very real chance of toppling the Patriots for the AFC East crown. The move to acquire Benjamin reads as a go-for-it deal, and Buffalo fans are happy to see that in the wake of the Marcell Dareus trade.

Benjamin, 26, was a first-round pick of the Panthers in 2014 when Beane was in the front office and Sean McDermott was on the sidelines. In that season, he caught 73 passes for 1,008 yards and nine scores. Unfortunately, the 2015 season was lost to injury and the football world is still waiting for Benjamin to replicate that season. The good news is that the health and conditioning problems that were plaguing the Florida State product appear to be behind him. In his half-season for Carolina this year, he has 32 grabs for 475 yards and two touchdowns.

The Panthers previously exercised the fifth-year option on Benjamin, meaning that the Bills will have him under contract through the 2018 season. His paltry $2.44MM cap number will increase to $8.46MM under the option, which is guaranteed for injury only.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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12 comments on “Panthers Trade WR Kelvin Benjamin To Bills

  1. hodor
    hodor

    Holy crap. Don’t understand the logic of this one on Carolina’s part.

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    • Scott Sandars

      There is no logic, Marty Hurney knows he’s only interim GM, and he’s trying to screw us over.

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      • oriolesravenstimberwolves04

        You weren’t going to pay him and somebody else would… pretty simple

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  2. Thronson5

    WOW!! Don’t get it. I understand if they think they can’t win and want to get some picks but think they could’ve done better for sure.

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    • mikeyst13

      Eh, he’s been injured a lot, people have questioned his off-season conditioning (despite the article claiming that it seems to be behind him, Rivera questioned it as recently as this preseason), and he’s got one year left at a pretty hefty $8.5 million. A third and a seventh is probably about the best they could hope for.

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      • mikeyst13

        And I’m not saying I agree with them trading him at this point when they are 5-3, but they probably weren’t going to get a better return.

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  3. Chris

    While he’s undoubtedly been good, he hasn’t been great or healthy. As opposed to paying him big bucks they sold high. I can see them not wanting to end up like the Cowboys and Dez: paying the premium price for mediocre returns

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  4. FBA17

    Bills have a chance of toppling Patriots! LOL now that’s comical to say after half a season.

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  5. inkstainedscribe

    He hasn’t shown he can get open and catch the ball anywhere outside the Red Zone (tho there’s value in that). Plus, the talk of him taking plays off continues. He’s a big target who’s not blazing fast but still will command a huge contract. Funchess looks like a better value overall, but he’s not a No. 1 receiver. I’m not sure KB was either, though he’ll get No. 1 pay.

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