The Buffalo Bills came into this free agency period with many questions to be answered. After appearing in the playoffs for the first time since 1999, the bar is now set for head coach Sean McDermott. Since their 10-3 loss against the Jacksonville Jaguars in the first round of the playoffs, the team has taken step forwards. General manager Brandon Beane has been a very busy man.
Earlier this month, the team signed cornerback Vontae Davis and power back Chris Ivory. Last week, the team cut ties with quarterback Tyrod Taylor and traded him to the Cleveland Browns. Saving money for the cap space and giving the answer that the Bills will have a new man under center. Days before free agency officially opened, the team agreed to trade offensive tackle Cordy Glenn to the Cincinnati Bengals as well as swap first round draft picks for this year. The Bills cleared up a lot of room in the cap space and went from the #21 pick to the #12 pick while keeping pick #22.
The team has agreed to terms with four players, in which all four are defense:
DT Star Lotulelei
Having connections with McDermott in Carolina, Lotulelei comes to Buffalo on a five-year deal. A player who is familiar with McDermott and can fit well into this 4-3 scheme is an excellent addition for the Bills. Being one of the worst run defenses’ last season, Lotulelei improves the defensive line.
Safety Rafael Bush
Bush comes up north from the New Orleans Saints. More of a special teams player, he provides value on special teams can brings depth to a dangerous Bills secondary. He gets a two-year deal.
DE Trent Murphy
One of the Bills’ bigger signings who will bring that extra edge to the Bills defensive line with Lotulelei. He had a breakout season in 2016 with nine sacks but was sidelined last season due to a torn ACL. With Murphy to go along with Lotulelei, Kyle Williams and Jerry Hughes it’s a huge upgrade for the defensive line, a unit that heavily struggled last season. Murphy signed a three-year deal worth $21 million.
LB Julian Stanford
Stanford comes to the Bills from the division rival New York Jets. He played mostly on special teams with the Jets last season which is where he may play the most for the Bills this season. He can also be used as a rotational player for the defense. He gets a two-year deal with the Bills.
The Heart and Soul is Back
The Bills also brought back long-time defensive tackle Kyle Williams on a one-year deal. This was a must-happen move for the team. Williams has been one of the teams’ leaders on the field and in the locker room. He also brings that extra edge for the defensive line.
The Bills could make more moves in the next coming days. Whether it’s bringing in more free agents or getting themselves prepared for the draft next month. Stay tuned.
-Brandon Ray is a Managing Editor for Full Press Coverage and covers the Buffalo Bills. Follow him on Twitter @brandon_ray79 and @FPC_Bills for Buffalo Bills coverage.