Skip to main content

'The best move for us' | Bills GM Brandon Beane on what CB Rasul Douglas & RB Leonard Fournette add to the team

Brandon Beane speaks prior to Buffalo Bills Week 9 practice at One Bills Drive, November 1, 2023.
Brandon Beane speaks prior to Buffalo Bills Week 9 practice at One Bills Drive, November 1, 2023.

The Bills made a couple moves on Tuesday leading up to the NFL trade deadline. Buffalo agreed to terms on trading a 2024 third-round pick to the Packers in exchange for cornerback Rasul Douglas and a 2024 fifth-round pick. They also added running back Leonard Fournette to their practice squad.

Beane said the trade with the Packers is not yet finalized because Douglas is just getting into the facility for his physical as well as other things.

"I don't know that he'll practice today (Wednesday)," Beane said. "Hopefully we can get him out there at least to watch at some point. And then we'll take it one day at a time. That'll be up to Sean (McDermott) and the coaches on how much or what his game reps would look like this week."

Douglas spent two and a half seasons in Green Bay and totaled 10 interceptions during his time there. His best season with the Packers came in 2021 when he racked up five interceptions, two of which were returned for touchdowns and added 13 passes defensed in 12 total games.

Beane shared the biggest attraction to Douglas was the fact that he knows how to take the ball away.

"When he went to Green Bay, the light came on for him and (he) started turning over some big plays," Beane said. "He's very instinctive."

The CB played also for the Panthers for one season (2020) and started his NFL career with the Eagles (2017-2019).

Over his seven years in the NFL, Douglas started in 57 games and played in 96. He has accrued 15 interceptions, 66 passes defensed, two forced fumbles, 17 tackles for loss and 354 total tackles in his career. Douglas was originally a 2017 third-round pick out of West Virginia.

With cornerback Tre'Davious White out for the season due to an Achilles injury, Beane shared that the team had their eye on the cornerback market for weeks.

"We've been looking at corners for weeks now since Tew went down, and teams are openly willing to give those," Beane said. "It wasn't easy. It was back and forth. Green Bay did not want to lose him. It took a couple of days. I called on him even last week and they were not planning to do it, but we finally made it an attractive enough."

While the Bills just made one addition to the defense, Beane said they were interested in looking at adding to both sides of the ball.

"We were looking at offensive players too, though," Beane said. "Is there a player out there that we can add to offense to help us score more points? To help get ahead and let these rushers (go). That's what Sean and I were talking about, what is out there that can help us. Naturally, you're gonna look on defense because that's where we lost DaQuan (Jones), Matt (Milano) and Tre (White) but we looked everywhere and ultimately found that this was the best move for us."

Beane also addressed other players in Buffalo's cornerbacks room, including Kaiir Elam and why he hasn't been part of the game day roster multiple times this season.

"He has had a nagging ankle," Beane said. "We're discussing whether to shut him down or not (Injured Reserve) and let it heal. So, he has been a scratch. I wouldn't say it's been 100% a healthy scratch."

Injury aside, the GM still believes in Elam's ability to play the game.

"Not everything has worked out perfect, but he's a young player," Beane said. "He's halfway through season two. And I've gone back and looked at his college stuff, and I see it. I know what's in there. We just got to get it out of him. We got to get his confidence up…I look at it as a young player, and you don't give up on young guys."

Elam has started in two games and played in three so far this season.

Beane said he got to know Fournette during the pre-draft process because the Panthers were interested in drafting a running back in 2017 and ultimately went with Christian McCaffrey since Fournette was drafted fourth overall.

"He's a bruiser," Beane said of Fournette. "He's a heavy, heavy dude--mid to 230s. He looks good…just competition to the room, but he doesn't know this playbook. And so, I think it's good for him to come in here and start on the practice squad. He's head down. He's been great, and we'll take it one day at a time with him."

Fournette most recently played for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers from 2020 to 2022. During those three seasons, the RB started in 25 games and played in 43. He totaled 466 attempts for 1,847 rushing yards and 17 rushing touchdowns and had 178 catches for 1,210 receiving yards and five receiving touchdowns during his time with the Bucs.

Over his six NFL seasons, Fournette has racked up 4,478 rushing yards off of 1,132 attempts, 34 rushing touchdowns, 312 receptions for 2,219 receiving yards and seven receiving touchdowns in 79 games played and 61 starts. He was drafted by the Jaguars and spent his first three seasons in Jacksonville.

Football weather has arrived in Buffalo! Check out the first snow photos from around One Bills Drive and Highmark Stadium on November 1, 2023.

Related Content