However, Whaley said that the process of finding the Bills’ next head coach forced him to set talks aside for the past few weeks.
“We’ve been so consumed with this coaching search that I haven’t been able to talk to (Senior VP of Administration Jim Overdorf) to find out where we stand there and once Rex finishes his staff then we’ll turn our attention to that,” Whaley said, via BuffaloBills.com. “But I know Jim has been in touch with his representatives and started the process.”
Whaley did, however, make it clear that they want to prevent him from reaching the open market and ensure that he’s back for the 2015 season.
“We’re excited and we want him back,” said Whaley of Hughes. “He’s a great part of our defense and hopefully we can get it done sooner rather than later.”
Hughes, 26, will be an unrestricted free agent in March, and he should be one of the most sought after defensive ends in this year’s free agent class.
In 2014, Hughes recorded 53 tackles, 9.5 sacks, three forced fumbles, one recovery and even scored a defensive touchdown for the Bills defense. Pro Football Focus has him rated as the No. 14 defensive end in a 4-3 system out of 59 qualifying players.
We have Hughes currently listed as the No. 17 player in our Top 50 Free Agents list.