2021 NFL Draft: Bills interested in trading up for Clemson RB Travis Etienne (report)

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Nick Wojton
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The Bills have been relatively quiet in terms of the rumor mill ahead of the 2021 NFL draft. That ended on Monday.

The draft gets underway on Thursday and just days prior, ESPN’s Todd McShay dropped a big nugget of “buzz” in regard to Buffalo. Per his report, the Bills have interest in moving up Round 1 to draft Clemson running back Travis Etienne.

“The last bit of buzz for you, Travis Etienne is the hottest running back in this class right now in terms of where his draft stock is going to be. I’m told that Buffalo at 30 is talking to teams ahead of the Jets at 23 and Jacksonville at 25 and going ahead of Pittsburgh as well trying to get in position to get Etienne,” McShay said via the Ryen Russilo podcast. “They think that he’s the best back. They want to pair him up obviously with Josh Allen and create that backfield.”

Throughout the pre-draft process, Etienne is one of two top running back prospects often projected as a potential first-round selection. The other is Alabama’s Najee Harris.

While the Bills do have Devin Singletary and Zack Moss in the fold, Etienne reads more as a bit of an all-around rusher. The 5-foot-10 senior running back has had some concerns as a blocker and with fumbling in his college career, but he’s a three-down back with home run speed.

Speaking of which, where there’s smoke, is there fire with Buffalo general manager Brandon Beane? Last week Beane had his pre-draft press conference. During that, he was all over the place discussing running back prospects. However, one comment he made did involve one trait in particular: Speed.

Beane said he “doesn’t think either one of our backs (Devin Singletary & Zack Moss) are home run hitters.” Perhaps Beane is, in fact, searching for that at the upcoming draft… potentially even so much so that he’d trade up to find it.

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