After suffering through ANOTHER Patriots Super Bowl win, we are officially on to the 2019 season. This off-season is full of optimism and will be critical for the Bills taking the next step to becoming contenders themselves. While everyone will be focused on the additions, we’ll take a look at the players the Bills could potentially be moving on from.
The list of players set to become free agents include:
DT Jordan Phillips, OL Ryan Groy, OT Jordan Mills, OG John Miller, RB/ST Taiwan Jones, WR Deonte Thompson. The Bills could choose to let all these players go in an off-season that will see another healthy turnover of the roster.
A few of these players could also be re-signed, such as Jordan Phillips who came over from the Miami Dolphins during the 2018 season and played well along with adding some positive energy to the team. Many thought he would already be re-signed by this point but they could still be in negotiations or he could be waiting to test the free agent market.
Taiwan Jones, who became a key part of the special teams before suffering a season ending injury, could also return in 2019. With the Bills looking to overhaul the offensive line, that group of free agents could be let go. There is a possibility they could bring back Jordan Mills as an insurance policy/depth.
There’s a few other players currently under contract to keep an eye on as potential cuts/cap casualties. The Bills may not need to clear cap space, sitting on roughly $80 million, but that doesn’t mean there won’t be any casualties.
The biggest name that comes to mind is Charles Clay. After a disappointing season, injury and age concerns, the production just doesn’t match the contract.
The Bills made Clay a healthy scratch towards the end of the 2018 season in an effort to get a look at the younger tight ends on the roster. Sitting your “number one” tight end while your developing your young rookie quarterback doesn’t bode well for Clay’s future. Add in $4.5 million in cap savings and all signs point to the Bills moving on from Clay.
Vladimir Ducasse is another possible candidate to be released after two rough seasons in Buffalo. Ducasse was brought in to join offensive line coach, Juan Castillo when he joined the staff. Now that Castillo has been let go, Ducasse may not be far behind.
Those are a few names to keep an eye on as the Bills look to upgrade at several positions on the roster. We can also expect some turnover at the bottom end of the roster in which the Bills will look to upgrade their depth as well. There could also be a few surprises, as we have learned, Brandon Beane isn’t afraid to take some chances and shake things up in the quest to finally bring a championship contending team to Buffalo.
Editor’s babble: Letting go of Charles Clay would be the final goodbye to questionable signings by Doug Whaley. While Clay had all the talent in the world, his knee was toast BEFORE the Bills signed him. Dolphins fans warned us the Bills over-payed for Clay and they were right. He was completely MIA (pun intended) by last season. PLEASE resurrect the moribund TE position in Buffalo! Thanks to Erik Smeal for his terrific insight and contributions to our blog. You can find Erik on Twitter @Buffwagon819.