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Buffalo Bills free agency grades 2016: they're not very good

The Buffalo Bills didn't do so hot this free agency period according to national outlets. Duh.

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The Buffalo Bills retained their own players. That was general manager Doug Whaley's mantra heading into the 2016 offseason with little money to spend on the salary cap. Now that the dust has settled, national outlets are handing out grades for the term and Buffalo mixes the good and bad.

ESPN gave the Bills a "C" grade, taking into account both the ability to keep their offensive line in tact but losing many key pieces of their defense without filling those holes. Bill Polian seemingly knocked Buffalo for losing "one of their top receivers" while praising the New England Patriots' approach, so perhaps that played a big role in his voting. That "C" doesn't put the Bills in the middle of the pack, though - they are tied with four other teams for 24th in the league.

Buffalo received a very similar grade of "C+" over at Pro Football Focus where they ranked as the second-best AFC East squad. Ben Stockwell gave praise to the Bills for making the left side of their offensive line a strength without losing anyone "crucial to their franchise." PFF doesn't share the affinity for Hogan that Polian did, which could explain the higher grade. NFL.com also gave them a "C+" but had them as the third-best team in the division.

The highest grade came from CBS SPorts' Pete Prisco, who lauded the Bills with a "B" for keeping their important players. That grade was the highest in the AFC East.