The Buffalo Bills have agreed to a contract with punter Sam Martin, the team announced on Wednesday night. Martin was reported to have been visiting the Buffalo facility on Wednesday. In a corresponding move, wide receiver Marquez Stevenson was placed on injured reserve with a foot injury.
Martin finished last season ranked third in the NFL in net punting average (42.8 yards per punt) and tied for fifth in the league with 28 punts inside the 20-yard line.
The Broncos decided to go with rookie punter Corliss Waitman for the 2022 season, cutting Martin last week.
It took just five days for the Bills to go from two legitimate punters to zero. Buffalo cut Matt Haack in favor of Matt Araiza on August 22, only for a civil lawsuit to be filed days later alleging that Araiza was involved in a gang-rape scandal when he was a member of the San Diego State football team. The Bills cut Araiza on August 27, and they’ve been looking for a new punter ever since.
Buffalo worked out punters Michael Palardy, Ty Long, Tyler Newsome and Joseph Charlton on Sunday, but didn’t sign any of them.
It was rumored that Bills were interested in Brett Kern, who had been released by the Tennessee Titans, but earlier today Kern’s father spoke in a radio interview, saying the punter wasn’t interested in leaving Tennessee.
The question now is at what cost are the Bills signing Martin. It was reported that Martin was released by the Broncos when he refused a pay restructure as Denver tried to make room under the salary cap.
According to NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero, the contract is a one-year deal for Martin.
Bills general manager Brandon Beane is notorious for making the salary cap work for Buffalo, so it should come as no surprise that he was able to close a deal amicable to both sides, and be sure Buffalo has their punter when they open the NFL season at SoFi Stadium on September 8.