clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

90 Buffalo Bills players in 90 days: DE Leonard Floyd

One of Buffalo’s new additions adds depth to the pass-rush group

Los Angeles Rams v Buffalo Bills Photo by Timothy T Ludwig/Getty Images

The Buffalo Bills thought they’d added the final piece to their defensive puzzle last year when they added edge rusher Von Miller to the defensive line. A future Hall of Famer, Miller would be “the closer” — the guy who takes down Patrick Mahomes and Joe Burrow in the fourth quarter to seal victory. Against the Kansas City Chiefs in the regular season, he was just that, sacking Mahomes in the fourth quarter to give Buffalo another shot at scoring.

Alas, by the time the Bills and Bengals met twice in January, Miller had torn his ACL, and the pass rush was nothing like it had been earlier in the season. The young players on the outside couldn’t match Miller’s ability — to the surprise of no one, as there aren’t many players who can — and the team couldn’t scheme a way to impact Burrow. While there were certainly other priorities this offseason, adding another quality pass rusher was an undercover need.

In today’s edition of “90 players in 90 days,” we discuss the pass rusher Buffalo managed to add — a former first-round pick with plenty left in the tank.

Name: Leonard Floyd

Number: 56

Position: DE

Height/Weight: 6’3”, 240 pounds

Age: 30 (31 on 9/8/2023)

Experience/Draft: 8; selected by the Chicago Bears in the first round (No. 9 overall) of the 2016 NFL Draft

College: Georgia

Acquired: Signed with Buffalo on 6/5/2023

Financial situation (per Spotrac): Floyd signed a one-year deal worth $7 million fully guaranteed, and he can earn upwards of $9 million. For the season, he carries a cap hit of $2,623,750. There are three void years on the contract to spread out the overall money.

2022 Recap: Floyd had a third consecutive strong year for the Los Angeles Rams, totaling nine sacks, 22 quarterback hits, 10 tackles for loss, a fumble recovery, and 59 overall tackles across 17 regular season games. He appeared on 933 defensive snaps — a total he probably won’t come close to approaching this year in Buffalo (for reference, DaQuan Jones led Buffalo’s defensive linemen in snaps with 643; Shaq Lawson led all defensive ends with 467). The 2022 season was the fifth consecutive year in which Floyd appeared in every one of his team’s games, as well.

Positional outlook: Floyd has been a rush linebacker for his entire career, but he’s listed officially as a defensive end in Buffalo. He’s joined by Shaq Lawson, Greg Rousseau, Boogie Basham, A.J. Epenesa, Kingsley Jonathan, and Kameron Cline as players with that specific positional designation. Von Miller and Shane Ray are both listed as linebackers, but they are edge defenders in Buffalo’s defense.

2023 Offseason: Floyd is healthy and participating in offseason activities thus far.

2023 Season outlook: This was a really good move for the Bills, as the pass rush absolutely disappeared late in the season last year. Adding more quality depth to go with the defensive ends on the roster was necessary, and adding a player with Floyd’s overall ability so late in the free-agency game is a great get for general manager Brandon Beane. At worst, Floyd is a great rotational player who occupies the brain space of offensive linemen and offensive coordinators all year long. At best, he’s another disruptive force to add to Miller and Rousseau along the edge. His presence is also sure to free up someone like Ed Oliver in the middle. In a league where protecting your own quarterback and hitting the opposing quarterback is often the main key to victory, it can’t hurt to add multiple players who are capable of destroying the opponent’s blocking scheme. Floyd could be a huge X-factor for the Bills this year.