For a multitude of reasons, the general consensus seemed to be that there was no better available fit across the NFL for potential free agent quarterback Tyrod Taylor than with the Buffalo Bills. After the madness and excitement of the early stages of free agency cleared, lo and behold, Taylor decided to remain in Buffalo, agreeing to a restructured contract rather than forcing the Bills’ front office to make a decision on the extension that would have activated his controversial blockbuster deal the team gave him ahead of the 2016 season.
While no doubt there were many in the media and fans alike that scratched their heads at Taylor choosing to restructure his deal with Buffalo and thereby forgoing his ability to test his worth on this offseason’s extremely weak free-agent QB market, — myself included — it’s really hard to argue with Taylor’s decision from a pure football perspective. The move was really the best one for the 27-year-old’s continued development as he enters his third season as a starter.
One high-profile media member who has shared his approval of Taylor’s pseudo free-agent decision is NFL.com’s Adam Schein, who lists Taylor as one of his nine winners of free agency and the offseason overall. Not all of the names on Schein’s list changed teams, for the players who stayed where they were at, the offseason transactions of their respective teams was also accounted for. Taylor checks in at No. 9 on the list with Schein praising his play the past couple of seasons in Buffalo, highlighting Taylor’s stellar touchdown to interception ratio of 37:12. The writer believes now that former Bills head coach Rex Ryan is out and Sean McDermott, who he says wanted Taylor back, is in charge on the sidelines, things will be better overall for Taylor.
“Taylor won't have to worry about being used as a pawn in a mind-numbing and unfair game between Ryan and GM Doug Whaley,” wrote Schein.
The bottom line is this: could Taylor have received a bigger contract from another team? Most likely, but his decision to remain with the Bills proves that, at this point of his career, the veteran of six seasons is more interested in winning than anything else. While the Bills still have a ways to go in ending their long playoff drought, they are further along than the teams that would have probably offered Taylor more money.
Buffalo is clearly where Taylor wanted to continue his career. He freed up cap space for his team this offseason. He seems to be paired with another coach who seemingly will go to war for him, and in return, one that Taylor appears be fond of as well. With all that in mind, it’s pretty hard to argue that the Bills’ undisputed signal-caller should not be among the winners of this offseason.