The Buffalo Bills were very busy in the week prior to free agency in 2012. Will history repeat itself this year?
2013 NFL free agency begins one week from today. If last off-season is any indication, the Buffalo Bills are going to be very busy over the next week.
A year ago today, the Bills agreed to a lucrative five-year contract with wide receiver Stevie Johnson just eight days prior to the start of free agency. That move provided the capstone moment of the Bills' off-season - at least until free agency began, when things got a little crazy - and more importantly, it kick-started a flurry of activity over the next week.
Prior to re-signing Johnson, the Bills had already inked two other players (Rian Lindell, Garrison Sanborn) and re-structured the contract of a third (Terrence McGee). Once Johnson signed, the team then re-signed five players within the next week: Ruvell Martin, Scott Chandler, Kraig Urbik, Chad Rinehart and Kirk Morrison.
This year, the capstone moment of the pre-free agency period has been placing the franchise tag on Jairus Byrd, but the team has also re-signed quarterback Tarvaris Jackson and offensive lineman Colin Brown, as well. The question, then, is how much the team can accomplish before free agency begins next Tuesday.
Of the team's dozen pending free agents, the team has (publicly, at least) expressed interest in re-signing four of them: fullback Corey McIntyre, guard Andy Levitre, pass rusher Kyle Moore and cornerback Leodis McKelvin. (Things are not reportedly going well with Levitre, which could increase the team's interest in bringing back Chad Rinehart.) All four players could get action on the open market, which may make repeating last year's busy week of re-signings difficult; if the Bills are serious about bringing these guys back, however, the next seven days are the team's window to get things done - and they'll only be without competition for four of them.