The Buffalo Bills have done a great job building their roster heading into the 2022 NFL season. With that being said, a couple spots are still potentially ripe for a veteran to come in and solidify a position or two. They don’t have a ton of cap space, but they could create some, and they can offer a chance at a Super Bowl to boot.
I think the three most likely spots where the Bills could add a veteran are offensive line, cornerback, and returner. Tommy Doyle is unproven, Cody Ford, Greg Mancz and David Quessenberry are roster bubble players, and both Isaiah McKenzie and Marquez Stevenson had the returner job stripped of them last year.
Here are some players who could be on the radar:
OL Daryl Williams
I wouldn’t place him on the list unless he fit so perfectly. He didn’t fit at the price tag he was at previously, but as the backup for all five spots (with Ryan Bates kicking over to center), he could be the top reserve lineman for the team tomorrow if he signed. If you’re looking for a guy to get you through the rest of the game or work in a pinch for a couple weeks, Williams would be a great add. If I were him, I wouldn’t want to re-sign in Buffalo, though. The Bills cut him for salary cap reasons earlier this offseason.
OL Riley Reiff
He only played 12 games last year, finishing the year injured, but he’s a long-term starter for multiple NFL teams. If I’m signing him, it’s to be the backup for the whole line. While most of his time has come at tackle, he could play guard, especially now that he’s almost 34.
CB Chris Harris, Jr.
I don’t want to count on Harris for an entire season at his age, but I don’t need him to start 17 games. He started 20 games combined over the last two years and didn’t have a stellar 2021, but he’s a former Pro Bowler who could just hold down the fort until Tre’Davious White is healthy.
CB Kevin King
Another oft-injured player, King is a former second-rounder with talent but has only played more than 11 games in one of his five NFL seasons. Like Kevin Johnson a couple years ago, you bank on the talent and give him a small contract to rebuild his value in the first few weeks of the season if he can beat out Dane Jackson.
CB Xavier Rhodes
A former Pro Bowler who is about to turn 32 is a great fit for what the Bills need. He was drafted by the Minnesota Vikings before Leslie Frazier’s final season as head coach. It seems like it would be a good fit if they can make the financials work.
CB Joe Haden
Stop me if you’ve heard this before. A former Pro Bowler who just turned 33, Hayden might be looking for more money than the Bills are willing to give to a rental player. He’s never played in the Super Bowl...
PR/KR Travis Benjamin
Slim pickings out there at returner, unless they have a UDFA in mind still. Benjamin opted out of the 2020 season due to COVID-19 and was on the San Francisco 49ers’ practice squad for the first part of the 2021 season before being promoted to the active roster. He turned 33 in December—not ideal for a returner—and he’s also had some of the same ball security issues both Marquez Stevenson and Isaiah McKenzie have dealt with.
PR/KR Tavon Austin
Listen, I said slim pickings. At 31, he’s younger than Benjamin but he hasn’t returned a kickoff since 2017 and he hasn’t returned more than three kickoffs in a season since his rookie year in 2013.
PR/KR Dede Westbrook
Westbrook was the primary punt returner for the Minnesota Vikings last year but, again, he doesn’t have a ton of kick return experience and has been little to no help on offense. At least he’s on the right side of 30. He could factor into the passing game, but I’d think at this point in the offseason, he’d already be starting behind everyone else on the roster.