Whole Nine Sports

2019 Buffalo Bills Off-Season Plan


Brandon Olsen
Follow him on Twitter @WNS_Brandon
Follow Whole Nine Sports on Twitter @WholeNineSports

Team Needs:

WR, OG, OT, TE, RB, DT, EDGE, CB

Available Draft Picks:

1(9), 2(40), 4(106), 4(125),5(149), 6(170), 7(205)

Starting Cap Space:

$74,974,377

Trades:

Picks 3(74), 5(138), and 7(208) to the Pittsburgh Steelers in exchange for WR Antonio Brown.

Personally, I think that just a third is enough for the Steelers to trade Antonio Brown but in this scenario, the Bills give up a little bit more to convince the Steelers to trade him within the AFC. AB carries a big cap number and an even bigger ego, but he’s going to bring Buffalo production and excitement like they haven’t had in years.

Restructures:

None

Cuts:

RB LeSean McCoy to save $6,425,000

RB Chris Ivory to save $2,156,250

Both Ivory and McCoy have seen their play drop off significantly over recent seasons. They’ve also both struggled with staying healthy. These cuts free up plenty of space for the Bills to have an exciting offseason, making them possibly the most improved team.

Re-signings:

IOL Ryan Groy for 2 years, $6,000,000

G John Miller for 2 years, $10,000,000

DE Eddie Yarbrough for 1 year, $645,000 ERFA

The Bills have very few expiring contracts this offseason so there weren’t a ton of options for re-signs. Bringing back John Miller and Ryan Groy means bringing in two returning starters from the offensive line, keeping the chemistry. Eddie Yarbrough is an exclusive-rights free agent, so he gets signed to the minimum.

Free Agent Signings:

RB Le’Veon Bell for 4 years, $58,000,000

DT Grady Jarrett for 4 years, $61,800,000

DT Sheldon Richardson for 2 years, $17,000,000

G Ben Garland for 2 years, $10,400,000

TE Jared Cook for 3 years, $21,300,000

WR Demaryius Thomas for 1 year, $6,000,000

CB Brian Poole for 3 years, $4,500,000

LB Craig Robertson for 2 years, $3,500,000

EDGE Kony Ealy for 1 year, $950,000

The biggest name here is Le’Veon Bell for $14,500,000 per season. Bell sat out this past year of football but after getting back into the swing of things, Bell should be right back up there as one of the most productive players in the league, helping out Josh Allen more than any other running back could. Grady Jarrett is another huge signing that also carries a big hit, but he’s an instant star on this defense and he’ll really be able to push the pocket from the interior. Sheldon Richardson has become a bit of a journeyman throughout his still short career and Buffalo is just the next stop on his trip, he’ll work to find a permanent home and be as productive as he can.

Ben Garland, Jared Cook, and Demaryius Thomas are all huge pieces to this offense. Garland quietly performed like one of the best guards in the NFL last season, Cook produced like one of the best tight ends in the league, and Demaryius Thomas will provide this offense with another veteran receiver that could still come in and contribute.

Brian Poole, Craig Robertson, and Kony Ealy are three guys brought in on the defensive side of the ball in order to fill some gaps and provide depth. Although Poole will probably be the only starter of the three, Robertson and Ealy should both find their way onto the field in some capacity.

Draft Results:

Pick 1.9 – Jonah Williams, OL, Alabama

Last season, Josh Allen was left constantly running for his life. This season, that won’t be the case due to the free agent signings and drafting Alabama lineman Jonah Williams. Williams should be able to succeed at any position on the offensive line, making this pick that much more valuable.

Pick 2.40 – Jeffery Simmons, DL, Mississippi State

Simmons just recently tore his ACL, but given the signings this offseason and needing to wait out Star Lotulelei’s contract for a bit so they don’t eat a huge cap hit, the Bills could draft Simmons just to stash him away for the year.

Pick 4.106 – David Sills V, WR, West Virginia

Sills V is one the best red zone targets in the NFL Draft this year and he could still be available with this pick. Drafting Sills V gives Josh Allen a big target to find, if he runs a good 40 time I could see him being like a younger Demaryius Thomas.

Pick 4.125 – David Long, LB, West Virginia

David Long is a scheme-versatile backer that’s light, long, and athletic. He’ll be able to contribute immediately in almost any role in the Bills 4-3.

Pick 5.149 – Drew Sample, TE, Washington

Drew Sample is a balanced TE that isn’t great at any one thing, but you know what you’re getting for the most part when you pick him. Sample stepping in right away as a TE2 makes this a great value pick for Buffalo to replace the newly cut Charles Clay.

Pick 6.170 – Bryce Love, RB, Stanford

One of the biggest issues that the Steelers and Le’Veon Bell had with each other was that Bell wanted more money and a lower usage rate. Drafting Love here gives the Bills someone that could be a speed back when the need arises for it while Bell is resting.

Pick 7.205 – Jordan Scarlett, RB, Florida

Back-to-back running backs to end the draft may not be ideal to many fans, but Scarlett could be a power back and could be the one to replace Bell during early downs if Bell is tired.

Cap Space Spent on Re-signings:

$8,645,000

Cap Space Spent on Free Agents:

$52,450,000

Cap Space Spent on Draft Picks:

$7,836,573

Total Cap Remaining:

$9,439,054

Backfield Starters

QB: Josh Allen

RB: Le’Veon Bell

FB: Patrick DiMarco

Receiver Starters

WR1: Antonio Brown

WR2: Demaryius Thomas

Slot WR: David Sills V

TE1: Jared Cook

TE2: Drew Sample

Offensive Line Starters

LT: Dion Dawkins

LG: Ben Garland

C: Ryan Groy

RG: John Miller

RT:  Jonah Williams

Defensive Line Starters

WDE: Trent Murphy

DT: Grady Jarrett

DT: Sheldon Richardson

SDE: Jerry Hughes

Linebacker Starters

WLB: Matt Milano

MLB: Tremaine Edmunds

SLB: Lorenzo Alexander

Secondary Starters

CB1: Tre’Davious White

CB2: Levi Wallace

Slot CB: Brian Poole

FS: Jordan Poyer

SS: Micah Hyde

Special Teamers

K: Stephen Hauschka

P: Corey Bojorquez

KOS: Stephen Hauschka

LS: Reed Ferguson

KR: Isaiah McKenzie

PR: Isaiah McKenzie

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