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What would it cost to retain Buffalo Bills tight end Logan Thomas this offseason?

Tight end Logan Thomas enters restricted free agency this offseason. With the Buffalo Bills having released starter Charles Clay last week, the position is wide open entering the offseason with Jason Croom the only player currently under contract. As we continue our look at the Bills’ roster, what would it cost to retain Thomas?

Restricted Free Agency

Thomas enters restricted free agency for the first time this offseason. Buffalo can choose to place the Original Round Tender on Thomas, which would mean a one-year, $2 million deal with no money upfront and no other guaranteed money. Essentially, they could place the tender on him and still release him all the way through final cuts without paying him anything but offseason pay.

If Thomas signed a different deal with another team, the Bills would net a fourth-round pick from the tight end’s new team. It’s unlikely another team would pay that steep of a price for Thomas and his 19 career receptions.

Buffalo needs to make this decision by March 13th, when the new league year begins.

Other Contract Possibilities

Lost in the shuffle last week of the Spencer Long signing, Buffalo quietly re-signed cornerback Lafayette Pitts to a one-year deal for the league minimum. Like Thomas, Pitts was set to become a restricted free agent. Knowing he was not going to receive an RFA tender, and seeing a limited market on the horizon, Pitts re-signed in Buffalo for one year and $720,000. That’s the same league minimum for which Thomas is eligible.

It’s unlikely Thomas and his handlers would be interested in a multi-year league minimum deal. With Thomas set to accrue his final season before becoming an unrestricted free agent, if he were to have a breakout year in 2019 he would want to cash in next offseason.

Buffalo should not be willing to open up their pocketbook for Thomas, so it looks like it’ll be a one-year, non-guaranteed deal for Thomas one way or the other. The only question is whether it’s for the league minimum or the RFA tender. With the lack of production, it’s way more likely to be the league minimum than the tender.