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Buffalo Bills Links, 3/2: Bills miss out on J.J. Watt

Plus, a 10-step plan for extending Buffalo’s championship window.

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Well, the J.J. Watt watch has ended, with the edge rusher signing a two-year, $31-million deal with the Arizona Cardinals (with $23 million guaranteed).

Today’s edition of the Buffalo Bills daily links recaps the Watt news, reassures Bills fans that not all is lost despite missing out on Watt, and identifies other talented edge rushers for Buffalo to go after this offseason.

We also offer up a 10-step plan to general manager Brandon Beane for extending the Bills’ championship window, discuss the pros and cons of using the franchise tag on linebacker Matt Milano, offer up potential players for Buffalo to target with the No. 30 pick in the NFL Draft, hear how tweets from wide receiver Stefon Diggs led Beane to make the blockbuster deal last offseason, delve into ways the Bills can shore up both their offensive and defensive lines, and more!

Recently featured on Buffalo Rumblings

J.J. Watt, Buffalo free-agent target, signs with the Arizona Cardinals - Buffalo Rumblings
It’s a two-year deal with $23 million guaranteed.

Free-agent edge rushers the Buffalo Bills could sign - Buffalo Rumblings
Here’s how the Bills could energize their pass rush.

2021 NFL Draft: Reinforcing the pass rush - Buffalo Rumblings
An average class means players could drop.

Buffalo Bills would save $6 million in salary cap space by releasing Mario Addison - Buffalo Rumblings
The Buffalo Bills signed Mario Addison in 2020 primarily to offset the departure of Shaq Lawson, who signed a similar deal with the Miami Dolphins in free agency.

Buffalo Bills Mock Draft Monday: Defensive playmakers dominate recent mock drafts - Buffalo Rumblings
There are plenty of options this week for Bills fans to consider.

CTW: Bills free agency talk with Mike Catalana of 13 WHAM - Buffalo Rumblings
Listen to Mike Catalana talk everything Bills free agency!

Additional Bills news from the web

J.J. Watt agrees to deal with Arizona Cardinals

J.J. Watt watch is over for Bills – former Texans defensive end to sign with Cardinals | Buffalo Bills News | NFL |
“The former Houston Texans’ defensive end announced Monday – with a picture of himself on Twitter – that he’s going to sign with the Arizona Cardinals,” writes Jay Skurski.

J.J. Watt signs with Arizona Cardinals, dashing Buffalo Bills’ free agency hopes -
The pass rusher has agreed to a two-year deal with Arizona.

J.J. Watt agrees to deal with Cardinals - WGR 550
Veteran defensive end J.J. Watt agreed to a two-year, $31 million deal with the Arizona Cardinals on Monday, reuniting with wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins.

Analysis: Missing out on J.J. Watt stings some, but Bills’ offseason is far from over | Buffalo Bills News | NFL |
“The J.J. Watt sweepstakes came to an end Monday with the Buffalo Bills failing to be in possession of the winning ticket,” writes Jay Skurski.

Why Bills didn’t sign J.J. Watt and what it means for the rest of the offseason – The Athletic
“By last week, Watt had offers in the neighborhood of $20 million guaranteed. The Bills didn’t offer that much and weren’t compelled to do so when they weren’t the highest offer,” writes Matthew Fairburn. (Subscription required).

Jordan Phillips, former Bill and new J.J. Watt teammate, incurs wrath from some Bills fans | Buffalo Bills News | NFL |
Bills Mafia took to Twitter after J.J. Watt signed with the Arizona Cardinals Monday.

Potential free-agent pass rushers the Bills could sign

Free agent pass rusher options for the Bills - WGR 550
Now that J.J. Watt is no longer an option for the Buffalo Bills, here are some other free agent pass rushers they may be interested in.

What Bills need to do at defensive end now that they didn’t sign J.J. Watt – The Athletic
The Bills have identified pressure from their front-four as a critical step to improving in 2021. (Subscription required).

Moves to make to extend Buffalo’s championship window

Bills’ 10-step offseason plan: How Buffalo can extend its championship window – The Athletic
From finding a cornerback to extending Josh Allen, here’s a 10-step plan to ensure the Bills’ championship window remains wide open. (Subscription required).

Should the Bills tag LB Matt Milano?

Bills offseason questions: Should the franchise tag be an option for Matt Milano? | Buffalo Bills News | NFL |
“The Buffalo Bills’ linebacker has given the team a terrific return on investment over his first four years in the NFL, developing into an impact starter after being a fifth-round pick,” writes Jay Skurski.

Possible targets with pick No. 30 in the NFL Draft

NFL Draft: What players make most sense for Buffalo Bills in first round? - Sports Illustrated Buffalo Bills News, Analysis and More
What do Azeez Ojulari, Travis Etienne and Levi Onwuzurike have in common besides unusual names? They are possible draft targets of Buffalo Bills.

ESPN’s Mel Kiper Jr. explains why he gave Bills an offensive lineman in latest mock draft | Buffalo Bills News | NFL |
“The Buffalo Bills have a franchise quarterback in Josh Allen,” writes Jay Skurski.

Revisiting the Stefon Diggs trade

Beane reveals how Stefon Diggs’ tweet led to trade - WGR 550
“Buffalo Bills general manager Brandon Beane has detailed his team’s pivotal acquisition of superstar wide receiver Stefon Diggs from the Minnesota Vikings last offseason,” writes Dan Mannella.

Bills Today | Stefon Diggs ranks here for best wide receivers heading into 2021 offseason
Here are three things to know about the Bills for Tuesday, March 2.

Odds and Ends

Buffalo Bills free-agency overview: Finding help in the trenches a priority - Buffalo Bills Blog- ESPN
Buffalo's offseason to-do list includes filling out an offensive line with three starters returning and adding a quality pass rusher.

Five players you forgot played for the Buffalo Bills - WGR 550
Did you remember that these five notable players had stints with the Buffalo Bills?