AFC East Notes: Bills, Dolphins, Jets, Patriots

     

Bills

  • The Athletic’s Joe Buscaglia writes if Bills G Quinton Spain gets an offer in the $6.5-$7 million range in free agency, they should let him walk after signing him to a prove-it deal last offseason. 
  • Buscaglia says if the Bills did want to keep Spain, they could create space by exercising an option to void the final two years of OL Spencer Long‘s contract. However, that hurts their flexibility, as Spain only plays guard. 
  • The Bills could also explore moving OL Cody Ford inside to guard, as that would remove a lot of the issues he faced at right tackle dealing with speed rushes to the outside. 
  • At offensive tackle, Buscaglia expects the Bills to re-sign LT Dion Dawkins to an extension, try and bring back OT LaAdrian Waddle for depth and draft a developmental tackle in the mid-rounds. 
  • NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said he would like for the Bills to be able to stay in Buffalo, but the team and the city needed to find a solution to make the stadium “competitive” with other markets. “Those are things that the group has to settle collectively and to address over the next several months, if not sooner.” (Pro Football Talk)
  • The Bills’ current stadium lease runs through the 2020 season. 
  • Bills CB Levi Wallace recently underwent shoulder surgery. (Jay Skurski)

Dolphins

  • Per Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald, Dolphins WR Preston Williams says he’s ahead of schedule in his rehab from a torn ACL and hopes to be ready for the start of the regular season.
  • Williams, an undrafted free agent in 2019, suffered the injury at the start of November. Rehab from a torn ACL usually takes about a year. 
  • Saints QB Teddy Bridgewater said he was very tempted to sign with the Dolphins and return to his hometown instead of returning to New Orleans this past offseason: “Coach Flores is a straight forward guy, told me, ‘We want you.’ But some things just didn’t fall in place the way we all wanted it to.”
  • Bridgewater said ultimately the Saints’ pitch to him was too good to turn down: “The Saints showed they really wanted me in different areas. That meant a lot to me, the approach the Saints took. It was an opportunity for me in New Orleans to continue to grow as a player mentally and physically.”

Jets

Chiefs RB Damien Williams used to be friends with Jets HC Adam Gase back when the two were in Miami. In 2017, Gase told Williams the Dolphins planned to re-sign him because he was a big part of their plans. But after Williams had surgery to repair a shoulder injury, Gase stopped taking his calls despite the fact Williams had considered him a friend up until that point.

“That really hurt,” Williams said via NFL Media’s Jim Trotter. “I was there four years and gave Miami my all. I still have not spoken to him to this day. That hurt me because me and Gase were cool.” 

For his part, Gase said he regrets how he handled that incident. He says he tried to reach out to Williams to apologize but was unsuccessful. He plans to try again after the Super Bowl. 

“I’m super happy for the guy. He played his ass off for me,” Gase said. “Do I wish I would have handled it better? Yeah. Looking back on it, I wish I would have handled it differently. I hate the fact that I haven’t talked to him.”

Patriots

  • ESPN’s Mike Reiss says adding speed should be a priority for the Patriots at wide receiver this offseason.
  • New England has Julian Edelman as their top receiver working chiefly out of the slot and are hoping for a step forward from 2019 first-round WR N’Keal Harry, who wins with his size and physicality. 
  • The Patriots also have WR Mohamed Sanu after trading a second-round pick for him at the deadline last year, but the potential $6.5 million cap savings could make him a cut if he continues to struggle adapting to New England. 
  • Reiss mentions 2019 UDFAs Jakobi Meyers and Gunner Olszewski as players rounding out the Patriots receiving corps whose roles in 2020 will depend on their development. 
  • Patriots QB Tom Brady could look to reunite with WR Danny Amendola wherever he ends up, including New England. (Doug Kyed)
  • NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said the investigation into the Patriots videotaping situation was still ongoing: “Our responsibility is to make sure we’re being extremely thorough. … Our team has been on it. We’ve been focused on it. I think it has not been that lengthy of a time.” (Zack Cox)

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