Maximizing the value of a draft pick is something that every team hopes to do, but the Buffalo Bills might be pressed into taking Syracuse quarterback Ryan Nassib higher than most project due to the fact that they do not wish for their division rivals to select him instead. The Bills are afraid that the New York Jets hope to select Nassib with the ninth selection if Buffalo chooses to pass on him with the eighth, according to Sal Paolantonio of ESPN.
It's a common NFL Draft philosophy that if a team has the opportunity to select a player it perceives to be a franchise quarterback that it should do so. While that sounds obvious, no team wants to take a player earlier than necessary and sacrifice the value of one of their earlier selections.
Nassib, the sixth-best quarterback in the draft rankings from SB Nation's Dan Kadar, isn't considered to be a highly-ranked player by many teams other than the Bills. However, if the Jets are interested in Nassib, that might validate their interest enough to take him at eighth overall.
That's compounded by the fact that the Jets are a fellow AFC East team and that Bills head coach Doug Marrone likely doesn't want to face his former quarterback and reported draft target two times a year in divisional play.
That all raises the question whether or not the Jets' interest is even legitimate. If the Jets were seriously interested in Nassib, it would be in their best interest to keep it quiet and not tip off the Bills, who select one spot ahead of them. But it could also be in their best interest to convince the Bills that they are secretly interested as a ploy to make Buffalo jump early and select a player of supposedly lesser value in the top 10.
Nassib, 6'2, 227 pounds, finished his senior season with 27 touchdowns and 10 interceptions, tallying a total of 3,753 yards passing. In three years as the starter at Syracuse, Nassib's completion percentage, passing yardage and touchdowns consistently improved from season to season.