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Brandon Beane’s Tenure by Letter Grade—Poll is Up!


QOD: Brandon Beane’s Tenure by Letter Grade—Poll is Up!  

247 members have voted

  1. 1. What grade has Brandon Beane earned so far?

    • A (He’s consistently put us in a position to win with Super Bowl-capable rosters while skillfully finessing the cap)
      162
    • B (Still more hits than misses, but the misses really hurt and he’s not in the top 10 tier of GMs)
      74
    • C (More misses than hits, with too much Russian Roulette capsizing the cap)
      9
    • D (We win despite of his roster and cap management)
      1
    • F (Get the bum outta here yesterday)
      1

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24 minutes ago, GunnerBill said:

Brandon Beane (reason tier 2 - doesn't whiff a lot in the draft but lacks difference makers)

Lacks difference makers?  Seriously? You mean besides Josh Allen (Pro Bowl -3), James Cook (all pro 2023), Kincaid, Oliver, Taron Johnson (all pro 2023), and soon to be added to the list Benard, Benford, Torrence and possibly Shakir.  I also think Rousseau will be a difference maker this season since he returns to his natural position. 

 

Didn't he also acquire some guy named Diggs in a trade?  You know the only guy in the NFL to have 1000+ yards each of the last 5 seasons!

 

He also drafted Wyatt Teller (2 All pros - 3 pro bowls)

 

Chiefs and Bills have the two highest win % in the NFL for the last 5 years.  Had we been in the NFC, we'd probably would have been to 2-3 Super Bowls already.  

 

Sorry Gunner, you are better poster than that comment.

Edited by GASabresIUFan
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For me the value of a GM is predominantly in how he drafts. Free agents are known quantities and their costs are their costs precisely because they’re known quantities. There’s no mystery or big analysis involved. The biggest issue when signing a lot of free agents is cap management. So signing a top player at his position for top-dollar really shouldn’t be a feather in anyone’s cap in terms of “spotting talent.”

 

College players soon to be rookies require significantly more knowledge and analysis in determining how they’ll translate to the NFL. That’s where GMs set themselves apart.

 

Rookie contracts for starting players are what enable a team to avoid cap issues. When it comes time to extend them you can often get a home-team discount by doing it a year earlier in a little bit of a trade-off. Free agents are entirely known quantities and far more no-brainers. Most fans can figure it out. Take Diggs for example, it’s not as if everyone didn’t know that he’d put up big numbers with Allen at QB.

 

The other thing is figuring out what your strengths are and then capitalizing on those. In our case it’s Allen, so we should be capitalizing on ensuring that he has everything that he needs to be all that he can possibly be.

 

Regardless of who he’s drafted, has Beane done that?

 

In last year’s draft he did with Kincaid and O’Torrence, but otherwise not so much. He also whiffed on Ford. Brown took a few seasons to catch on, and Cook is limited as a ball carrier and appears to have a season-long utility of about 180 carries, or about 10/game on average, after which he’s worn out and produces low-end rushing performance.  He's done nothing worthy of note in the playoffs with 1 total TD in four playoff games and an average 13 carries for 48 yards on 3.6 yards-per-carry.  

 

From the time that Allen was drafted until before this past season, his OL has been average at best, but we also had historical fortune with injuries along the OL this past season with zero injuries. Other than for Diggs, and possibly Beasley for a season, his WRs have been average at best as well, and Diggs was bought, not drafted. We haven’t had a RB that has even approached being the type of all-around RBs that McCoy, Jackson, or Thurman were.  

 

He could have done more to build around Allen. Instead, the approach was to appease McD is his singular minded coaching approach of having the top defense in the league perennially, regardless of the costs to the other parts of the team. The extent to which McD influenced him can be argued, but if we’re laying the building of the team at his feet, then it would befall him.

 

Where that ranks him who’s to say, but it’s a tough call to give him an A when he’s produced not a single elite player in six drafts apart from Allen. But also, when you have Allen, it’s a fool’s game not to do everything that you can to produce the high-scoring offense that he’s capable of leading.

 

Has Beane done that?

 

Many, including myself, would argue that he has not done that.  

 

 

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Nive.   

On 6/13/2024 at 9:16 AM, Beck Water said:

 

Nice breakdown.  Ooh, I forgot about Tyler Kroft.  We paid him $10M which is certainly an over-pay for what we got, but he did play.
 

WR I think you got to factor in gimondulous whiffs like Corey Coleman and "gee, I just paid 3.5x more for less" whiffs like swapping out McKenzie for Deonte Harty.

 

RB similar swapping Nyheim Hines for Zack Moss - the Colts got the better production end of that one, and 

 

DL I have to note that Beane has been hampered by McDermott's insistence on "selfless" guys who "buy in".  It led to our keeping duds like Star Lotulelei, Vernon Butler, and Mario Addison for far too long.

 

Route me to b going bed

 

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4 hours ago, GASabresIUFan said:

Lacks difference makers?  Seriously? You mean besides Josh Allen (Pro Bowl -3), James Cook (all pro 2023), Kincaid, Oliver, Taron Johnson (all pro 2023), and soon to be added to the list Benard, Benford, Torrence and possibly Shakir.  I also think Rousseau will be a difference maker this season since he returns to his natural position. 

 

Didn't he also acquire some guy named Diggs in a trade?  You know the only guy in the NFL to have 1000+ yards each of the last 5 seasons!

 

He also drafted Wyatt Teller (2 All pros - 3 pro bowls)

 

Chiefs and Bills have the two highest win % in the NFL for the last 5 years.  Had we been in the NFC, we'd probably would have been to 2-3 Super Bowls already.  

 

Sorry Gunner, you are better poster than that comment.

 

James Cook was not an all pro last year and guys "soon to be added to the list" are by definition not yet elite difference makers. I like the group of young talent he has from the last couple of drafts. Maybe one of them gets to that status. But they haven't yet. 

 

If you read my previous posts in the thread you will see I say Allen is his one proven elite difference maker drafted. Oliver and Taron Johnson are close but not quite elite. Who is the next closest of his 44 draft picks? 

 

The trade for Diggs was a home run, no question. He was an elite difference maker for us for three and a half years. Again read my full range of posts in the thread. 

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5 hours ago, Sierra Foothills said:

 

Fair enough. I haven't seen those proclamations but I trust your knowledge of the situation.

 

But if McDermott said "Ed Oliver" and Beane said "Christian Wilkins", who's gonna get their way?

 

You may treat it as a rhetorical question if you wish.

It is interesting if there was ever a major disagreement between Beane and McDermott over a draft pick we'd never know it publicly.  As far as the draft it seems Beane has the final say.  The last embedded video is a good example.  McDermott wanted Van Prann in the 4th round but Beane decided to take Ray Davis in that spot.  They took the chance that Van Prann would be there 13 picks later in the 5th. 

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On 6/14/2024 at 9:49 AM, Einstein's Dog said:

K Coleman was pretty much passed by everyone else and Beane was so unafraid of him getting picked that he traded down twice.   Doesn't mean Coleman can't be good. 

 

You're looking at this the wrong way. It isn't that he didn't like him or he was unafraid of him getting picked. It was that he had multiple WR's ranked evenly. After the guys that went in the Top 10 and BTJ, it seemed everyone had differing opinions and it came down to what you were looking for. And it's possible to have a log jam of players ranked fairly evenly at a position and still think highly of those players.

 

From Picks 28-37, 6 of those 9 picks were WR's. At Pick 28, he probably had a number of guys he was looking at and knew he could still land one of them at 32. And at 32, he had at least two guys he was looking at that were even, so he knew he could move to 33 and still land one. 

 

We were looking for a true X Outside WR. Not a slot, not a Tweener, a big X. So guys like Worthy, Pearsall, and McConkey weren't much of a consideration - but other teams were in need of those kind of inside or inside/outside guys, even though that's not what we were looking for. He most likely knew KC was drafting Worthy and when they got to 32, they definitely knew Carolina was taking Legette. Everyone knew that was coming. So he knew he could go to 33 and still land Coleman.

 

Considering Ja'Lynn Polk was taken at 37 (the next X if teams were iffy on Mitchell and considered to go later than he did), Coleman wouldn't have lasted much longer even if we hadn't taken him. It's been pretty much said Coleman would have been the pick if we stood pat at 28 and would have been the pick at 32.

 

Just because he was the 8th WR taken doesn't mean we had him as WR8 in the Draft and every team in the league did. Every team after the top 4 guys went probably had a different ranking and it just boiled down to the type you were in need of.

Edited by BillsFanForever19
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On 6/13/2024 at 1:27 AM, NoHuddleKelly12 said:

Since Beane’s takeover from the bloated and non-performing Whaley tenure, we’ve seen plenty of hits from FA and the draft, but also some misses of course…putting it all together however, what kind of cumulative letter grade would you assign to Beane at this point, and why?

 

Also, outside of Josh Allen (who is the best single pick of Beane’s era), who’s been the best pickup in the draft so far? Biggest miss? Same for free agency?


Sean McDermott is the  best GM of all time.

 

We are very blessed.

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On 6/15/2024 at 9:22 PM, GASabresIUFan said:

He also drafted Wyatt Teller (2 All pros - 3 pro bowls)

Not sure which column this one belongs in.  I lean towards a net negative, since none of those accolades were here because he gave up on him too soon.

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On 6/14/2024 at 12:29 PM, Einstein's Dog said:

Also there have been Superbowl winners that invested in WRs.  Tampa had M Evans/C Godwin (along with Gronk and Gage), and LA had C Kupp + OBJ.

Pretty sure the SB wins were AFTER these 2 teams went and got a QB to help them over the hump. Brady and Stafford. IMO, it was the investment into the QB position that propelled them to SB wins.

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On 6/13/2024 at 4:18 AM, Doc Brown said:

He's somewhere between an A and B.  Definitely a top five GM in the league.  To answer your questions.  His best move besides drafting Allen was trading for Diggs.  His best draft pick so far in terms of value was Taron Johnson.  Knox, S. Brown, Shakir, Benford, Bernard, and Davis are also in the running.  His biggest miss was Cody Ford despite us all loving the trade up at the time.  I would say Elam but the book hasn't been written on him yet.  The Basham pick is still infuriating.  His best free agent signings were Morse, Brown, D. Williams, and Beasley.  His worst contract given out was unfortunately Von Miller. 

I agree with most of what you said but weren’t two of his first moves signing Poyer and Hyde. Or do I have that wrong? If he did, they make the list. 

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On 6/15/2024 at 9:58 PM, GunnerBill said:

 

My tier 1 is:

Howie Roseman

Eric DeCosta

Brett Veach

John Lynch

Brad Holmes 

Will McClay (not technically the GM in title but he runs personnel in Dallas and has turned down actual GM jobs because they pay him like a GM and he is never getting fired). 

 

Tier 2 is: 

John Schneider (reason tier 2 - too many round 1 whiffs but excellent in the rest of the draft)

Les Snead (reason tier 2 - he is a big sugar high for my liking in his pro personnel moves but excellent drafter)

Jason Licht (reason tier 2 - beyond Tom Brady he has struggled to get QB right but has had a solid overall roster)

Brandon Beane (reason tier 2 - doesn't whiff a lot in the draft but lacks difference makers)

Nick Caserio (reason tier 2 - still in the honeymoon phase but smashed the rebuild, found his QB and his coach)

 

 

 

 

 

I never understood the love for Lynch. IMO, Lynch does not deserve a higher ranking than Beane. The ONLY reason they are super bowl contenders is they are paying Mr. Irrelevant less than $1 million per season, on average. He can go and sign big name free agents because of this. Why does he get a pass on the Trey Lance debacle? He gave up a ton to draft Lance, only to trade him for peanuts. That alone would get most GM's fired. In his 1st ever draft with the niners, he picks someone named Soloman Thomas # 3 overall and then Reuben Foster later in the first round. He lucked out on Kittle in the 5th.  Subsequent drafts weren't anything to sing about. Beane has been better at the draft than Lynch. Not even close. Still SB contenders, without the advantage of have tons of $ for FA's due to Purdy's low cap value. They have not won the big one with all of that "talent" Lynch has acquired and he's going to have to pay Mr. Irrelevant some big $ coming up. If anyone watched Purdy play without his big-time players, you would know he is a result of the immense talent around him. They went 0-3 and scored only 17 points in those games. He was horrible. Folks here claiming Beane got lucky to draft Allen, yet not acknowledging that Lynch was lucky as hell to have a 7th round QB, making less than $1 million on average, save him from the Trey Lance joke of a pick. Again, JMO. 

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25 minutes ago, Bobby Hooks said:

I agree with most of what you said but weren’t two of his first moves signing Poyer and Hyde. Or do I have that wrong? If he did, they make the list. 

No.  McDermott was the architect behind those signings before Beane got here.

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1 hour ago, Dopey said:

Pretty sure the SB wins were AFTER these 2 teams went and got a QB to help them over the hump. Brady and Stafford. IMO, it was the investment into the QB position that propelled them to SB wins.

QB is the most important position, but we already have one….

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43 minutes ago, Dopey said:

 

I never understood the love for Lynch. IMO, Lynch does not deserve a higher ranking than Beane. The ONLY reason they are super bowl contenders is they are paying Mr. Irrelevant less than $1 million per season, on average. He can go and sign big name free agents because of this. Why does he get a pass on the Trey Lance debacle? He gave up a ton to draft Lance, only to trade him for peanuts. That alone would get most GM's fired. In his 1st ever draft with the niners, he picks someone named Soloman Thomas # 3 overall and then Reuben Foster later in the first round. He lucked out on Kittle in the 5th.  Subsequent drafts weren't anything to sing about. Beane has been better at the draft than Lynch. Not even close. Still SB contenders, without the advantage of have tons of $ for FA's due to Purdy's low cap value. They have not won the big one with all of that "talent" Lynch has acquired and he's going to have to pay Mr. Irrelevant some big $ coming up. If anyone watched Purdy play without his big-time players, you would know he is a result of the immense talent around him. They went 0-3 and scored only 17 points in those games. He was horrible. Folks here claiming Beane got lucky to draft Allen, yet not acknowledging that Lynch was lucky as hell to have a 7th round QB, making less than $1 million on average, save him from the Trey Lance joke of a pick. Again, JMO. 

Lynch and co obviously botched the Lance pickup, but they routinely have one of the most talented rosters in football. 
 

They went to two SB‘s with two QB’s who honestly have no business being SB QB’s IRT their talent levels.

 

Their lack of success at finding a QB is a black eye for them, but their accomplishments despite not having a QB is a real feather in their cap at team-building.

 

Like you said, they are propping up a dude who is not very good because they built a great roster around him. 
 

Fred Warner is a third round pick and a 3 time All-Pro. They paired him with Greenlaw who is a very good young player who may get an All-Pro nod soon in the fifth round. Ward is a very good corner. Hufunga is an All-Pro safety they got in the fifth round. They brought in Trent Williams for a song. Aiyuk in the late first and Deebo in the second, both All-Pros.

 

The takeaway from the Niners is that they are proof positive that having arguably the most talented roster in the league (which is an accomplishment) still means you may not get over the hump with a far worse QB.

 

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found the 2nd best QB in the league atm.  ez A for me.   its a team game,  but having a top 2 QB after all those years of suck,  is fantastic.   Allen is 1B right behind Mahomes at 1A imo.   hes done great with the roster,  finding no name guys who become guys.  he goes and fills needs.  is he perfect?  no,  but he has helped change this franchise into a destination for players.  A

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On 6/16/2024 at 4:16 PM, BillsFanForever19 said:

You're looking at this the wrong way. It isn't that he didn't like him or he was unafraid of him getting picked. It was that he had multiple WR's ranked evenly. After the guys that went in the Top 10 and BTJ, it seemed everyone had differing opinions and it came down to what you were looking for. And it's possible to have a log jam of players ranked fairly evenly at a position and still think highly of those players.

You’re not wrong, but what does it mean in terms of evaluating his decision as a GM?  Let’s assume that there was a pool of players Beane had graded identically.  He then traded back 4 spots and allowed KC, SF, Dallas, and Baltimore to pick from that pool first. 
 

Those are some of the best front offices in the business, and KC clearly had a strong opinion that one of those players stood out amongst the rest. Settling for whomever those teams didn’t want doesn’t seem like the best way to get the top player from that pool. 

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I look at this two ways:

 

Yearly grade

Overall or long term

 

Yearly it will change as the goal of the GM is to build the best possible roster which it then is up to the coach to work with. Overall or long term every team wants a QB, clean cap, and draft picks to work and replenish with.

 

So yearly:

2017 B but mostly because he did not do FA/draft and was more setting up the future. I thought he did a fine job given the circumstances and this is fair

2018 A-  Had Wyatt Teller been here still its a A+ but regardless he knocked the draft out of the park and got Josh. FA was still cleaning the cap which was fine

2019 B+ Oliver was has been good and the rest of the draft was productive, Brown Beasley & Morse were all major signings that helped build the future in a big way. Also gave Josh a decent offensive line to sit behind that year.

2020 B- Diggs trade bails out was was a lukewarm draft that long term never really developed and hurts now as none of the guys are left minus AJ Epenesa & Bass 

2021 C Emmanuel Sanders was fine as WR3 and Greg Rossesau is a solid DE. The rest of FA was limited and that draft was even worse then 2020. Spencer Brown did have a nice comeback year and if he continues to improve to be a long term answer then I may switch this to a B-

2022 B+ The Von signing hurts because of the contact and brings the grade down from an A-, BUT at the time it felt good and until injury he was playing at a high level. More importantly the draft looks to have netted four starters in Shakir, Cook, Bernard, & Benford plus Spector has been fine in spot duty as 7th round pick. If Elam ever finds himself this draft really looks impressive. Don't forget DaQuan Jones was a cheap FA signing too.

2023 C+ The draft looks to have netted potentially three starters in Kincaid, Torrence, & D WIlliams. The Rasual Douglas was a sensational trade midseason that really helped the back end. Now for the bad, the only quality free agent signing that worked out with Connor McGovern, the cap was a mess from prior years spending locking the Bills out from a needed proven WR, they didn't address WR in the draft as it became clear that Davis probably was walking & Diggs was becoming an issue, and many of the free agent signings that offseason were non factors. The platoon approach especially was questionable at WR rather then going for a proven starter and reared its head more and more throughout the year.

 

Overall B+ / Top 10 GM in the NFL - Overall Beane has managed to find a franchise QB & help his development, fix the cap and for the most part manage it well, most drafts he has found proven starters although he needs a few blue chip players to emerge again like in 2018/19, and he has been thrifty with his free agent/trade dealings finding very good starters there. To me he is a ring away from being in the Top 5 of GMs that exist, but it is not like he isn't in their universe either and is quite respected league wide. The Von signing and Tre White deal both feel unfair to fully put on him because the nature of the injuries they had was freak and in that regard it is hard to predict especially with Tre. Keon Coleman will be probably his one great judgement for the time being as WR seems to be the one spot he has not found a truly great starter year at whereas on virtually every other level of the roster he has found truly quality long term players. I guarantee if Beane were available right now he would be sought after as heck with a legion of teams ready to move for him. I truthfully trust him and care about having him around long term more then I care about McD at this point.

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On 6/16/2024 at 3:20 AM, GunnerBill said:

 

James Cook was not an all pro last year and guys "soon to be added to the list" are by definition not yet elite difference makers. I like the group of young talent he has from the last couple of drafts. Maybe one of them gets to that status. But they haven't yet. 

 

If you read my previous posts in the thread you will see I say Allen is his one proven elite difference maker drafted. Oliver and Taron Johnson are close but not quite elite. Who is the next closest of his 44 draft picks? 

 

The trade for Diggs was a home run, no question. He was an elite difference maker for us for three and a half years. Again read my full range of posts in the thread. 

 

I would add with that many people forget the 2017 draft class was Whaley/McD not Beane that gave Tre, Milano, & Taron. All three of them became true blue chip difference makers. Beane did get Allen, Edmunds, & Oliver and I do agree like you said the last two draft classes have brought a really nice group of young talent but he really needs a few to elevate to the levels the three from 2017 did.

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20 minutes ago, corta765 said:

 

I would add with that many people forget the 2017 draft class was Whaley/McD not Beane that gave Tre, Milano, & Taron. All three of them became true blue chip difference makers. Beane did get Allen, Edmunds, & Oliver and I do agree like you said the last two draft classes have brought a really nice group of young talent but he really needs a few to elevate to the levels the three from 2017 did.

2017 FA (McD) was also the year we brought in two of our best defenders in Poyer and Hyde. 


Really, the talent-regression we have undergone over the last two years is in large part because that was 7 years ago and a lot of those difference makers got hurt or old.

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