With the Patriots winning the Super Bowl the offseason is officially starting for everyone and now everyone builds to 2015. The first big event is March 10th when Free Agency starts and the Bills have a few positions that could be addressed in this time period.
With Kyle Orton retiring (hopefully forever this time) the Bills are quite thin at the QB department. They only have 2 QBs in EJ Manuel and Jeff Tuel with Tuel being nothing more than a camp arm. By sheer numbers they need at least one more QB, maybe two. What the Bills are looking for is a veteran QB who can hold the fort for a few games as well be someone who can help EJ out on the sidelines, film room and be an extra QB coach. The top guys for this are Matt Moore, Brian Hoyer, Matt Hasselbeck, Jason Campbell and Shaun Hill. All those guys could be good competition and be a veteran mentor kind of guy. If they want, they can also go the failed 1st round QB route with guys like Locker, Ponder and Gabbert.
Last year the offensive line regressed significantly despite having a supposed O-line guru coaching it. While part of the problem was coaching, the other part was the guard positions are lacking in talent, particularly the LG spot. Good news is there are some solid guards in this free agency class. Mike Iupati is the top guy and he has some familiarity with Greg Roman. He isn’t going to be cheap and will probably at least cost 6-7 million a year. Orlando Franklin is another intriguing option. A sleeper guy for guard is Andy Levitre who might be a cap casualty with the Titans. The Bills offensive line has not been the same since Levitre has left. Part of that is due to coaching, another due to play-calling, and the biggest reason is the guys who replaced him weren’t that great. He is a good fit for the zone blocking scheme Greg Roman uses. Levitre would be the cheapest of the big name options and would provide a stabilizing presence for Wood and Glenn.
Skill Positions and Defense
Part of the clause for Rex coming to Buffalo was they try their hardest to bring in Revis, or he might get angry. I expect Revis to stay in New England but if he comes on the market, expect the Bills to go all out for him (they have 30+ million in cap room). The other player they will try to get is bringing back Jerry Hughes who has been a key part of a front four that has caused massive havoc. He won’t be cheap, but if the Bills want to keep their core players together, I expect they try really hard to extend him or tag him. For the defense I expect them to also bring in some depth guys on the defensive line as now that position is pretty think. Alex Carrington and Alan Branch are good fits for the five-technique and a reunion might be beneficial for both sides. There are other guys they can bring in but I doubt they break the bank for that position.
On offense I expect they will try to bring back Spiller but more than likely he will be gone. Other than him I doubt the Bills go hard at RB. Tight End is an interesting position as Jordan Cameron and Charles “Big Play” Clay are two guys who won’t break the bank but could be decent contributors at least until the young guys develop. Wide Receiver this year happens to be very deep but the Bills have their top 2 guys set with Woods and Watkins. Only kind of player I could see them bringing in is a veteran who can provide leadership and help the young guys. Right now the veteran WR (and I am excluding Easley) in years is Chris Hogan. The Veteran guy they bring in won’t be a big time contributor but more than likely a guy who is near the end and wants one last paycheck.
Overall I expect the Bills to bring in one veteran QB with top choice being Matt Moore. On the offensive line I expect them to try to bring in a guard who can man the left or right guard spot and allow the other guys to compete for the other spot. On defense I expect Hughes to be brought back either at 4 years 42 million or by franchise tag.