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Buffalo Bills News - March 11, 2015

Marker Bills make Matt Cassel trade official [1:41 AM]
WGR-AM reports: 'Throughout his career in Minnesota, Kansas City and New England, he has started a total of 71 games, with a career record of 33-38, while throwing for 96 touchdowns to 70 interceptions in all his career appearances. Cassel has one year left on his current contract, and is scheduled to have a cap hit of $4.75 million in 2015.'

Marker Report: Percy Harvin visiting the Bills first [1:40 AM]
WGR-AM reports: 'Harvin was released by the Jets on Tuesday afternoon, following the official acquisition of wide receiver Brandon Marshall. In 2014, the Seattle Seahawks traded Harvin to the Jets for a conditional draft pick. Between the two franchises, Harvin caught 51 passes for 483 yards and one touchdown. He also rushed for 202 yards between the two clubs and another touchdown.'

Marker Bills interest for naught, Revis picks Jets [1:39 AM]
WGR-AM reports: 'As announced by his agent on Tuesday night, Revis has elected to sign with the New York Jets -- the original team that drafted him in the first round out of Pittsburgh. The cornerback, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter, will get more than $40 million guaranteed in his deal with the Jets.'

Marker Bills sign FB Jerome Felton [1:38 AM]
WGR-AM reports: 'The signing is the second significant addition to focusing on a run-centric approach on offense for the Bills, after the team traded for running back LeSean McCoy and signed him to a five-year, $40 million extension with $26.5 million guaranteed. Felton graded out on as the sixth-best blocking fullback in the league in 2014.'

Marker TE Charles Clay on free agent visit with Bills [1:37 AM] reports: 'Bills head coach Rex Ryan, offensive coordinator Greg Roman and tight ends coach Tony Sparano Jr. traveled on the private plane to demonstrate to Clay how serious their interest is in adding him to their roster. The trio of coaches was able to convince the free agent to join them on a return flight to Buffalo for a tour of One Bills Drive.'

Marker Bills officially acquire QB Cassel from Vikings in trade [1:36 AM] reports: 'Cassel comes to Buffalo after spending the past two seasons in Minnesota, playing in 12 games for the Vikings while completing 194-of-325 pass attempts for 2,232 yards, 14 touchdowns and 13 interceptions. The 10-year veteran has played in 90 games in his career, starting 71, while completing 1,397-of-2,369 pass attempts for 15,727 yards, 96 touchdowns and 70 interceptions.'

Marker Free agent FB Jerome Felton visits with Bills [1:35 AM] reports: 'The Bills dispatched Assistant head coach/running backs coach Anthony Lynn by private plane to pick Felton up and bring him back to Buffalo late Tuesday.'

Marker LeSean McCoy won over by Bills ownership [1:34 AM] reports: '“They were excellent. They really make me feel like I’m at home,” McCoy told “Terry and Kim are great. They’re intelligent and they really care about the players. Everywhere in this league is different and coming here that’s the first thing that I actually noticed. They care about the players. They want me to fit in.'

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March 10, 2015

Marker Bills ready for opening of free agency [1:59 AM]
Buffalo News reports: '“When you’re on a team where everyone kind of feels that way and when you have that camaraderie, everybody just wanting to win, the willingness to win, … you want to be a part of that. Also, with Rex Ryan taking over the team, you know what he is bringing to the organization. You know he knows how to get to the playoffs, so you want to be a part of something special. You can kind of lean on that.”'

Marker Bills re-sign Hughes; Jackson may stay [1:58 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'However, Monday afternoon owner Terry Pegula reportedly weighed in on the side of keeping Jackson on the team, despite the fact that cutting him made logical business sense. The possibility of Jackson's departure drew the ire of Bills fans. A Facebook campaign was initiated and by late in the afternoon, more than 5,000 "likes" had been recorded.'

Marker Dear LeSean, you're going to love playing for Bills [1:57 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'I've heard people say that running backs are a dime a dozen in the NFL and less important than they used to be. But when I look at the dozen teams that made the playoffs last year, every one, with only a few exceptions, had a better-than-average guy carrying the rock. And now Buffalo has one of the five best – you.'

Marker Buffalo Bills bringing back kickoff specialist Jordan Gay [1:56 AM]
Syracuse Post-Standard reports: 'Former Bills coach Doug Marrone spent plenty of time defending the merits of having a kickoff specialist on the roster, and it appears he's not the only one who thinks Gay has value to the team.'

Marker Bills fans petitioning to keep Fred Jackson in Buffalo; Terry Pegula reportedly getting involved [1:55 AM]
Syracuse Post-Standard reports: 'It's obvious that Jackson's popularity, both at One Bills Drive and in the Western New York community, is making it hard for the Bills to make their decision on Jackson based solely on football.'

Marker Jerry Hughes says Rex Ryan promises Buffalo Bills will do a 'bit of everything' on defense [1:54 AM]
Syracuse Post-Standard reports: '"From what I've been hearing from Rex is that we're going to be doing a little bit of everything. When you hear that, that's exciting right there."'

Marker Could Rex Ryan and the Buffalo Bills really cut Fred Jackson? [1:53 AM]
Syracuse Post-Standard reports: 'Still, cutting a 34-year old running back isn't the issue. Cutting a player that means what Jackson does to the locker room and the Buffalo community is the bigger risk for Ryan and the Bills' brass. Jackson has been the face of the franchise for the better part of the last decade. He's constantly recognized for his work in the community and provides leadership only Kyle Williams can match in the Bills' locker room.'

Marker Buffalo Bills, Jerry Hughes reportedly agree on five-year contract [1:52 AM]
Syracuse Post-Standard reports: 'Hughes, who reportedly had six other suitors, was one of the top pass rushers left on the free agent market and got a deal that fits that. The Bills traded linebacker Kelvin Sheppard to the Colts to acquire Hughes prior to the 2013 season, and Hughes responded with back-to-back double-digit sack seasons. Last year, Vikings defensive end Everson Griffen signed a contract for five years, $42.5 million and $19.8 million guaranteed, so Hughes' deal is about what the Bills could have expected coming into negotiations.'

Marker Bills' $40M foursome vows to get even better [1:51 AM]
Toronto Sun reports: 'The Bills are operating with a $145.78-million carryover-adjusted salary cap in 2015, and 27.5% of it is devoted to the starting defensive front four..'.

Marker Hughes re-signs with Bills because of 'unfinished business' [1:50 AM]
AP reports: 'He signed a five-year contract with a potential worth of more than $45 million a day before having the opportunity to test his value on the NFL's free-agent market.'

Marker Hughes set to return to Buffalo [1:49 AM]
The Sports Network reports: 'The 26-year-old TCU product also had 10 sacks in his first year with the Bills after amassing a total of five in three seasons with the Colts, who made him a first-round pick in 2010.'

Marker Hughes signs $45M deal with Bills [1:48 AM]
The Sports Xchange reports: 'Ryan said in Indianapolis at the Scouting Combine last month that Hughes was a priority based on his performance against Ryan and the AFC East over the past two years. The Bills hiring Ryan was a selling point for Hughes.'

Marker Can Fred Jackson still bring value to the Bills in 2015? [1:47 AM]
WGR-AM reports: 'Clearly offensive line – and potentially coaching – played a role in Jackson’s struggles.'

Marker Bills sign kickoff specialist Gay to extension [1:46 AM]
WGR-AM reports: 'On 83 total kickoff attempts, he carried a 63.4-percent conversion percentage and allowed only 19.9 yards per return. Terms of the contract were undisclosed.'

Marker Bills sign Jerry Hughes to 5 year, $45 million extension [1:45 AM]
WGR-AM reports: '"I’ve said this before: when you don’t have a large chunk of your cap eaten up by a marquee quarterback, you can spend it other ways," he started. "We’re gonna heavily invested in the defensive line, but that’s one of the ways we’re going to have to play to win with the makeup of our squad: play good defense, run the ball and have the quarterback protect the ball. So that’s how we’re building this team.”'

Marker Bills re-sign LB Jerry Hughes [1:44 AM] reports: 'Since the start of last season, Hughes ranks fourth amongst all AFC defensive ends in sacks with 20.0. With 20.0 sacks in his first two seasons with the team, Hughes became the fourth Bill to ever record 20 sacks in his first two years.'

Marker Transcript: Jerry Hughes re-signs in Buffalo [1:43 AM] reports: 'It’s an amazing feeling. It feels great. Huge thanks to Terry Pegula, Kim Pegula, Doug Whaley, Russ Brandon, my agent Tracy Lartigue making all this happen. I’m excited, but now it’s back to work. Kind of like our main focus is to get an AFC East banner hanging up in this building, so that’s the plan. Just get back to work and continue working to try to get better from before.'

Marker Kickoff specialist Gay signs extension [1:42 AM] reports: 'The multi-year deal for Gay gives clear indication that the club intends to move forward with the kickoff specialist. Last season, Gay’s first with the Bills, he finished ninth in the league in touchback percentage with a success rate of 60.5 percent, improving the team’s touchback rate almost 20 percent from 2013 (41.5%) when Buffalo ranked 24th in the league.'

Marker 5 things to know about the Bills before free agency [1:41 AM] reports: 'With the arrival of Greg Roman’s offensive scheme tight ends will be needed in numbers. The Bills will be looking for a tight end that can serve in-line, detached, on the move and out of the backfield. Scott Chandler has been among the most productive receiving threats in Buffalo. MarQueis Gray and Chris Gragg have shown flashes but both are early in their careers. Lee Smith’s status remains uncertain as he approaches the start of free agency. We’ll see where the team goes as the team moves through free agency and the draft.'

March 9, 2015

Marker Bills, McCoy agree to $40 million deal; Hughes close to returning [1:59 AM]
Buffalo News reports: 'McCoy’s salary cap number in 2015, however, will be $5.5 million. That accounts for his base salary, workout bonus and prorated amount of his signing bonus ($2.625 million). That’s nearly $5 million less than the $10.25 million he was scheduled to count against the Bills’ cap under the terms of his old contract – a key maneuver for the team to free up cap space to take into free agency, which begins Tuesday.'

Marker Bills lavish rich contract on McCoy [1:58 AM]
Rochester D&C reports: 'Only the top 51 salaries on a team's payroll count against the cap during the offseason, so factoring in those players and the projected money needed to sign draft picks, the Bills now have approximately $18.4 million in cap space. That's before any potential savings they could create by releasing contracted players, and offensive guard Kraig Urbik is at the top of that list. Cutting Urbik would free up $3.75 million.'

Marker Buffalo Bills reportedly targeting Jets running back Bilal Powell in free agency [1:57 AM]
Syracuse Post-Standard reports: 'Powell has been a favorite of Ryan since the two first met before the 2011 draft. The Jets picked Powell in the fourth round that season, and the Louisville product proceeded to rush for 1,296 yards on 332 attempts over the last four seasons. He will likely come cheap, but Powell would still further crowd the Bills' running back depth chart. Do the Bills have room for all five running backs?'

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