Buffalo Bills training camp wraps up in less than one week, on August 25. Their regular season opener against the Indianapolis Colts takes place in 24 days, on September 13. It doesn't sound like the team will be re-signing All-Pro defensive tackle Marcell Dareus to a long-term contract extension before either of those dates.
John Wawrow of the Associated Press reports that contract talks between the Bills and Dareus "are at a standstill," and that no offer has been exchanged between the two sides in "a few weeks."
The Bills had reportedly hoped to sign Dareus, 25, to a long-term contract extension prior to the start of training camp. That obviously did not happen, so evidently the start of the regular season became the next soft deadline. That now seems unlikely to occur, as well.
Dareus is entering the final year of the rookie deal he signed as the No. 3 overall pick in 2011. It's a team option that will pay him $8.06 million, fully guaranteed, during the 2015 season. A two-time Pro Bowl defensive tackle that earned his first first-team All-Pro selection last season, Dareus is considered one of the best defensive tackles in all of football, and will look to be paid accordingly.
The contracts that his agent will undoubtedly reference during negotiations belong to Ndamukong Suh (six years, $114.375 million, $59.955 million guaranteed), Gerald McCoy (six years, $95.2 million, $51.5 million guaranteed), J.J. Watt (six years, $100 million, $51.876 million guaranteed), and perhaps even his own teammate, Mario Williams (six years, $96 million, $50 million guaranteed). The Bills will, of course, do what they can to talk him down from there. It may take the two sides straight through next spring to reach an agreement, given the magnitude of the numbers likely to be discussed.