January 22, 2014


JAIRUS Byrd is not a name you see me use on here a lot, and the reasons for that are 1) I'm not a fan of players squawking a year or two early about their contract and 2) Because once Byrd officially becomes a FA, his current team still gets first shot at him.

Until the season ends there is no way to guess what the players feelings might be towards his current team, or what the team's current feelings might be like toward the player.

Even though he missed five games to start the season, Byrd just made his third Pro Bowl. So I'm pretty sure the Bills feel good about him.

The question then becomes, "How does he feel about Buffalo?" Here's an indicator: 

Byrd, who is in Hawaii at the Pro Bowl this week spoke of plans to bring all of his fellow defensive backs on the Bills with him and possibly secondary coach Donnie Henderson, if he could get away.

That is an excerpt from an article that the Bills posted on their website about their plans regarding their FA players. The list of FA players: K Dan Carpenter, TE Scott Chandler, S Jim Leonhard, and back-up DL Alex Carrington

The Bills say they have a priorities list of these FA players. While they haven't said who the TOP priority is, c'mon is that REALLY a question?

Although he played 2013 for 6.19 on a franchise tag, Buffalo could tag him again at 120% of his 2013 salary. That would cost them 7.4 in 2014, but then Byrd would be disgruntled again.

Given his repeated demand to be the highest paid Safety in the NFL, and given that the top paid Safety is Troy Polamalu at 7.5, my guess is it'll take about 8 to 8.5 per year to make him happy, and ink him for the long term. The distance between the tag and 8.5 is only 900K per year. 

My guess is, barring a team with a need at Safety and money to throw around in a bidding war (Raiders maybe), odds are that Byrd stays put.

  • I wouldnt count on him coming to philly. I would say sign Allen and try to get a very serviceable FA and concentrate on getting a beast NT.
  • I wouldn't count on Byrd going anywhere.

    I keep seeing the name T.J. Ward being thrown around, but what we've been lacking is a COVER Safety. Ward is a SS and does his best playing in the box. He is by no means a similar option if we don't get FS Byrd.

    If we fail to get Byrd, Malcolm Jenkins might not be a bad look. I liked him better as a CB back, but he hasn't been bad at FS. (I annually put 1-2 Saints on my FF team, so I watch a lot of their games.)

    Better than all of those moves, I still say would be sliding Fletcher over. When I look at guys like Jenkins, Ronnie Lott, Charles and Rod Woodson, Michael Huff, Everson Walls...there's a fairly long list of players who made a successful transition from CB to FS. Almost all of these become better ballhawks after the move.

    For ONCE I'd like to see the Eagles get in on something everyone else has already figured out. Over the years this team has done well even when sledding uphill (e.g. We don't need a star WR, We don't need to draft a stud LB, etc), I can only think they'd get to their destination finally if they stopped making things harder than they need to be (e.g. Get a star KR/PR, Go to a 4-3, Move Jackson to the slot).

    Safety has an easy fix, they just need to do it.
  • Wouldn't mind Byrd but I'm not getting my hopes up that he will make the team that much better. That lingering injury worries me with the eagles past problems with that injury that just doesn't go away.

    Ward would be great. He doesn't need to be a ball hawk not all safeties are. Donte hitner sure isn't and ward is better than him, plus younger.

    Fletcher to safety is a good idea only if we can replace him on the outside. Personally I believe justin gilbert can come in and start day one. So that could be an option. Ward and fletcher in the back with Anderson and Allen as back ups is better than anything we have had in the past 4 years.

    Either way we need to get our new safety this year.
  • Agreed.

    Safety HAS TO happen this year. With the Draft being deep at the position, and us having problems at that position for (6 years)over half a decade now, there is no reason we should NOT grab a stud early.

    On that note I'm glad you brought up Donte Whitner. Whitner (like Ward) is a SS. He plays around the line because he has Pro Bowl FS Eric Reid to back him up in deeper in coverage. Like Polamalu does with Ryan Clark in Pittsburgh.

    Our problem is coverage (32nd in pass defense). I said last year that we should trade down and reach and grab Reid, folks said "No he doesn't have that high of a grade on him." Rookie Pro Bowler.
  • I didn't see u say trade down for him I seen u say pick him at four which would have been a huge reach. I wanted Reid bad and was willing to trade up from the second possibly using a first this year for him cause no way we could have been 4-12 this year again even with Reid and Vick again. Luckily this years draft has solid starters it seems from round one to round five so if we don't walk away with atleast one starting safety the scouts n howie need to watch out for pink slips.

    We still need a safety who can play ss. We have zero safeties. That 32nd pass defense is gonna be inflated because of how much the defense is on the field but ur right it needs to improve. Getting a guy like ward or hitner would be a good idea if we can get a cover guy as well. I would look towards Michigan states safeties. Kenny ladler from Vanderbilt or tre boston from North Carolina. All can cover and know how to tackle.
  • This is why I say move Fletcher to FS and sign Miami CB Grimes.

    Or move Fletcher to FS and take a gamble that Brandon Boykin can play outside.

    Or draft a legit FS for the first time since 1996.

    Anything! Just get us a guy who can cover down the middle! This right now is TWO straight coaching staffs so far that have blown it on this one position.

    How many in the box Safeties have we added? Jaiquawan Jarrett, Mike Lewis, Earl Wolff, and a host of non-stud Safeties drafted round 4 or later.

    To their credit they did swing for Nate Allen at FS, but he's been earning a failing mark for years now. Since his injury he's played mostly in the box. (Remember all those plays with Kurt Coleman trailing someone deep as they scored?) Allen is even listed as our SS (http://www.nfl.com/player/nateallen/2508043/profile ).

    At this point even if they strike out, I just want them to go out and get guy who's ability to help us with coverage is not in question from Day One (See: Patrick Chung, Kenny Phillips, etc.)
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