Even after the Buffalo Bills re-signed veteran defensive lineman Alan Branch to a three-year deal last week, it's sounding like free agent end Alex Carrington would still like to return to the team that made him a third-round draft pick in 2010.
"I like it here in Buffalo, I really do," Carrington told Mark Gaughan of The Buffalo News. "It’s the perfect defense for me and everything. I love the community."
Carrington began his fourth professional season as a full-time starter for the Bills following a strong close to the 2012 season and a stand-out training camp performance that earned him ardent praise from Doug Marrone and his defensive assistants. Even after Carrington was lost for the season with a torn quad, reports surfaced that the Bills were trying to re-sign the 26-year-old base defensive end.
In his three games played this season, Carrington averaged 52 snaps per game, working both in the base defense and as a rotational pass rusher in nickel and dime sets. He looked ready to become a major player for the Bills on the defensive line, but wound up registering just 10 tackles before the injury, then watched Branch flourish as a run-stuffer in his spot in the base defense.
Whether or not Carrington returns to the Bills in 2014 seems up to the level of interest the Bills have in re-signing him - that may have changed since they re-upped Branch - and how well negotiations proceed with Carrington's agent, Eugene Parker. Buffalo has another negotiation to conduct with a Parker client, Jairus Byrd, this off-season - and given how poorly things went on that front in 2013, it's worth at least mentioning the possibility that things may not go smoothly between the Bills and Parker, regardless of the client.