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Who Are Some Of The Free Agents The Bills Should Consider To Help The Weakened Secondary?

After barely losing to the Dolphins one thing is clear, the rookies are good but the Bills are still lacking depth in the defensive backfield. Here are a few potential options Brandon Beane could take a look at.

Three weeks into the NFL season and the two and one Buffalo Bills are banged up. Going into the game versus Miami the Bills had lost their starting free safety Micah Hyde for the year. Then came the news that Jordan Poyer, the starting strong safety would also be out. This was on top of already troubling news that the Bills would have to start two rookie corners in the place of the injured Dane Jackson and Tre’Davious White.

With all the injuries to the Bills secondary it’s no wonder they lost to the Dolphins. In fact, it’s a testament to the Bills work ethic and perseverance that they only lost by two points. So here the Bills are, 14 games to go in the season and they face their hardest stretch of opponents. Who can the Bills look to in free agency to help with the injured secondary?

Most of the free agents out there have been picked over leaving mostly older veterans and untested or frequently injured players. That doesn’t mean that there are no players of value out there, it just means that your expectations of what you may get should be appropriately curtailed.

Safeties

Landon Collins is an eight-year veteran who most recently played for the Commanders last season. He was placed on injured reserve in December of last year and released by Washington in June of 2022. With two Interceptions along with a few pass deflections and forced fumbles on top of 80 total tackles before getting injured, he may be a free agent the Bills should pursue. This of course is only if he is healthy enough to play.

In the interest of getting a proven veteran into the position, another player available is Jaquiski Tartt. Tartt most recently played for the 49ers and was an average strong safety. His last year playing in 2021 he recorded 66 tackles, one interception and one missed interception in the NFC championship game that would allow the Rams to go to the Super Bowl. He was signed and let go by the Eagles this past off-season, but the 30-year-old might still have some gas left in the tank.


Cornerbacks

A cornerback to consider is Xavier Rhodes. He most recently played for the Colts in 2021 and recorded one interception, seven pass deflections, and over 30 tackles. Admittedly the 32-year-old is past his prime, but he’s shown to still be able to make plays. It’s also worth mentioning that the Bills need a stop-gap solution at cornerback, not a permanent replacement so Rhodes might be the guy to come in a help out for a few weeks.

Other cornerbacks to mention are A.J. Bouye and Kevin King. Bouye played for the Panthers last season and recorded 28 tackles, three pass deflections and a forced fumble before getting injured. King was a top prospect for the Packers and had a banner year in 2019 where he had five interceptions, 15 pass deflections, a forced fumble, and over 60 tackles. However, injuries have plagued him over the last two years and he’s resolved to take 2022 off. Can the Bills persuade him to come back?

There are other names to consider. Aged veterans like Josh Norman (former Bill), Richard Sherman (who now announces for Amazon), Jason McCourty (Retired), and Janoris Jenkins (wants a pay day) are all available. Unfortunately, all of these players would need to be convinced to play and likely for a lot of money.

Over the next month the Bills will have their work cut out for them if they want to win. They face offensively dominate teams like the Ravens, Chiefs and Packers. While the Bills have shown that Josh Allen and the offense can still score points, the weakened defense will be a hinderance. They may want to consider biting the bullet and paying for some short term help to shore up the defense while they face the toughest part of their schedule.

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