Last season, the Buffalo Bills had one surprise player make the roster at the defensive end position—former Denver Broncos end Eddie Yarbrough. The Bills plucked Yarbrough off the Broncos’ practice squad, and the then-24 year-old made enough of an impact that the Bills kept him on the 53-man roster.
In our latest installment of “90 players in 90 days,” we discuss one of Buffalo’s own practice squad players trying to make the leap to the final roster in 2018.
Name: Marquavius Lewis
Height/Weight: 6’3” 270 lbs.
College: South Carolina
Draft: Entered the league as an undrafted free agent, signing with the Buffalo Bills following the 2017 NFL Draft
Financial situation (per Spotrac): Lewis re-upped with the Bills this offseason, signing a two-year deal worth $1.05 million. His cap hit for 2018 will be $480,000 if he makes the team; none of the money on the contract is guaranteed.
2017 Recap: Lewis had a strong preseason opener, making three tackles for loss, including a sack, in a loss against the Minnesota Vikings. He had two more tackles against the Baltimore Ravens in the third week of the preseason before finishing up the exhibition slate with a tackle, a pass defended, and a quarterback hit against the Detroit Lions. He was cut by the Bills on September 2, signed to the practice squad on September 3, released from the practice squad on October 10, re-signed to the practice squad on October 31, then released from it again on December 23. He did not appear in a regular season game last year.
Positional outlook: Lewis once again faces an uphill climb to make the final roster. Jerry Hughes is entrenched as one starting defensive end, and when Trent Murphy fully recovers from knee surgery, he will probably be the other starter. Yarbrough and Shaq Lawson fit as the top two reserves. That leaves Lewis to battle Terrence Fede, Mike Love, Mat Boesen, and Owa Odighizuwa for a maximum of one spot on the roster, unless they make a move with Lawson.
2018 Offseason: Lewis has attended voluntary workouts and mandatory minicamp. That’s essentially all we know about what he’s done so far.
2018 season outlook: It’s quite unlikely that Lewis will make the 53-man roster coming out of camp this season. With the overhaul at the position including several veterans with upside, Lewis is likely fighting for a spot on the practice squad again this season while also auditioning for other teams who may have more need at the position.