In a career full of instability, Trae Elston was seemingly a fit to stick with the Buffalo Bills, but an injury may cost this young safety his roster spot with the team.
Name: Trae Elston
Height/Weight: 6’0”, 190 lbs.
Draft: UDFA (2016)
Financial Situation (per Spotrac): Elston is under contract for two seasons with the Bills, at a salary of $1,020,000. His base salary for 2017 is $465,00 and all of it will go against the salary cap this year.
2016 Recap: Elston has had a wild year since entering the league as an undrafted free agent last season. The safety originally signed with the New Orleans Saints in May of 2016 and was released in September. From there Elston signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers that October and was released less than a month later. In December, Elston was signed by the Cleveland Browns and was waived before Christmas but resigned with the practice squad. He would later be released by the Browns in April. He has not seen any regular season game action in the NFL yet.
Positional Outlook: Micha Hyde is obviously one of the two starting safeties come week one. Jordan Poyer, who was Elston’s teammate on the Browns, will likely be the second. Behind those two players there are a lot of young players that have little to no NFL experience at all, or are exclusively used as special teamers. The most experienced of the rest of the safeties is a former Arena Football League star, Joe Powell. All in all, who knows what is going to happen back there when the final roster comes out.
2017 Offseason: Elston signed with the Bills on April 21st. Elston briefly had some playing time with the first-team defense when Hyde was out for a few days with his hip injury but has consistently been lining up with the twos. He had a good performance in the first preseason game and seemed to be making another strong case for himself in the second preseason game before he suffered a hamstring injury.
2017 Season Outlook: Elston was making a strong push for a spot on the final roster before suffering his injury. He is currently listed as day-to-day, so hopefully he will be able to get on the practice field again soon in order to close the deal. If he does get healthy and make the final 53, I expect him to be a contributor whenever Hyde or Poyer needs to take a play or two off.