Bills GM Doug Whaley mentioned on Thursday that they will be meeting with the representatives for free agent RB C.J. Spiller in the coming days and are hoping to “close the gap.”
“(Senior VP of Football Administration) Jim Overdorf, (President) Russ Brandon and (Contract Administrator) Kevin Meganck are meeting with his representation right here at the combine,” Whaley said, via BuffaloBills.com. “We’re hoping we can close the gap and get the deal done.”
It’s, at the very least, an encouraging sign that they could have an agreement in place at some point before the start of free agency. However, it sounds like there is still a ways to go before anything could be considered likely.
“There’s going to have to be some work done, but I’m confident that we’ll each come to the table with an open mind and try to get a deal done that’s great for both sides,” said Whaley.
Kimberly A. Martin of Newsday reported Wednesday night that the Jets are “very interested” in Spiller, which fits with a lot of recent speculation now that New York has hired former Bills HC Chan Gailey as their new offensive coordinator.
In fact, Spiller has said he would be a “perfect fit” for the Jets.
“There is that familiarity between me and him in that offense,” Spiller said, via Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News. “So that would be a perfect match. Who knows what can happen, but I’d be foolish not to have those guys on my list. I had my best years in the league with Chan. So it’d be dumb not to give it serious thought.”
Spiller, 27, finished out his five-year, $25,672,087 rookie contract with the Bills that included $11,854,169 guaranteed and is now in position to be an unrestricted free agent in the coming weeks.
The problem for Spiller other free agent running backs is that there is more depth at the position in recent years, as well as a strong draft class, which means these players could be forced to take lower contracts than they may have landed in previous years.
DeMarco Murray and Spiller should be able to do better than than this year, but it goes to show just how little teams are willing to pay for veteran running backs nowadays.
In 2014, Spiller was limited to appearing in nine games and rushing for 300 yards on 78 carries (3.8 YPC) to go along with 19 receptions for 125 yards receiving and one touchdown.
We have Spiller currently listed as the No. 36 player in our Top 50 Free Agents list.