AFC Notes: Bills, Jets, Patriots

     

Bills

Buffalo used to be the equivalent of Siberia when it came to free agency, with players hesitant to join the Bills and eager to get out. Thanks to the rising stars of QB Josh Allen, GM Brandon Beane and HC Sean McDermott, though, the Bills have become more of a destination team. They landed WR Emmanuel Sanders in free agency and also got guys like LB Matt Milano, RT Daryl Williams and G Jon Feliciano to turn down a chance at the open market and possibly more money to stay and keep building with the team. 

“I think when you have a guy like Josh Allen leading your franchise with a guy that players can trust like Beane and McDermott, honestly, that’s where it starts,” Feliciano said via the Athletic’s Matthew Fairburn. “I think that’s why you see a lot of us coming back and taking less money or whatnot – just to able to go to work every day and know that we’re all truly going for the same goal. A lot of organizations will say it’s all about winning, but at nut-cutting time, they do some other things. So I think the biggest attraction beside Josh Allen is you know you’re going to be in an organization that’s in it for the right reasons and is doing it right.”

  • According to Joseph Person of The Athletic, Bills’ recently signed DE Efe Obada chose Buffalo over multiple organizations including the Cowboys, Seahawks, and Washington.
  • Person adds that the Panthers offered Obada a contract but could’ve done more to keep him.  
  • According to Over The Cap, the Bills will need to save $2,244,712 in cap space to sign their draft picks this year.
  • Bills WR Isaiah McKenzie hopes to play his enter career in Buffalo: “I’m here now and I plan on being here for a while.” (Sal Capaccio)
  • McKenzie, who re-signed to a one-year deal this offseason, reiterated that he’s committed to the Bills: “Money is nice … But if we got paid in candy, I’d still stay in Buffalo.” (Marcel Louis-Jacques)
  • McKenzie mentioned that “7-8 teams” showed interest in him including Lions, Bears, Cardinals, Washington, and Browns: “If everything is even, I’d rather go to Buffalo. I like playing there.” (Thad Brown)
  • Auburn WR Anthony Schwartz said he’s had a recent pre-draft meeting with the Bills.  (Justin Melo)

Jets

Jets’ new WR Corey Davis considers himself a No. 1 receiver in the NFL due to his combination of technical skills and ability to stay healthy. 

“I do consider myself a No.1 wide receiver,” Davis said, via DJ Bien-Aimee II of the New York Daily News.My ability to get open, my speed, separation, releases, I feel like I could do it all. I’m a thousand-yard receiver. It’s just up to me to put in the work. Make sure that I’m healthy and can play a full season.

Davis pointed out that he has a lot of experience in play-action passes after playing in the run-heavy Titans’ offense. 

“They were run-heavy so the play-action pass worked pretty well for us,” Davis said.

Davis added that his understanding of Jets’ new OC Mike LaFleur‘s offense was a big factor in him signing with New York. 

“That was a big piece of it,” Davis said. “I know it pretty well. It’s evolved a little bit, obviously. So there’s a few things that I still have to kind of get more familiar with. So I can come in and kind of hit the ground running.”

Patriots

  • The Athletic’s Jeff Howe notes the Patriots probably still need to add one or two more running backs given the injury histories for Sony Michel and Damien Harris.
  • Leonard Fournette has been linked to the Patriots and is still available. New England also re-signed RB James White
  • Howe thinks the Patriots could trade WR N’Keal Harry during the draft. 
  • Howe doesn’t think the Patriots will cut either of the 2020 third-round tight ends, carrying Devin Asiasi and Dalton Keene as the No. 3 and No. 4 guys on the depth chart. 
  • If Patriots LT Isaiah Wynn goes down with an injury again in 2021, Howe thinks the plan is to move Trent Brown over from the right side, kick G Michael Onwenu back to right tackle and insert C Ted Karras at guard. 
  • He adds the team could look hard at a tackle in the first round given Brown is just on a one-year deal and Wynn has that injury history. He adds guard could be a need too given Karras has traditionally just played center and is also on a one-year deal. 
  • At kicker, Howe points out the Patriots gave Nick Folk $1.225 million guaranteed, which suggests he’s the heavy favorite for the starting job and roster spot ahead of Roberto Aguayo. They already released 2020 fifth-round K Justin Rohrwasser.
  • According to Over The Cap, the Patriots will need to save $813,132 in cap space to sign their draft picks this year.

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