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Bills bring back QB Levi Brown

The Buffalo Bills acted quickly to fill Trent Edwards' vacated spot on their 53-man roster, re-signing rookie quarterback Levi Brown on Tuesday.

Brown, a seventh-round draft pick out of Troy in April, was among the Bills final cuts earlier this month. The 6-foot-4, 225-pounder went 15 of 30 for 130 yards and two interceptions in the preseason. He had a quarterback rating of 34.0.

Brown was not offered a spot on the Bills' practice squad after being cut. He's had tryouts with at least three teams since then, including the Patriots, Steelers and Giants, but had not been able to land a job.

Bills coach Chan Gailey addressed the possibility of bringing Brown back Monday when discussing the release of Edwards.

"I think he is a guy we would look at very closely," Gailey said. "We liked him when he was here."

Brown will serve as the Bills' No. 3 quarterback behind starter Ryan Fitzpatrick and backup Brian Brohm.

The Bills will need to make another player move next week when tight end Shawn Nelson is eligible to come back after his four-game suspension.

---Jay Skurski

Cash savings, quotes

For the record, the Bills don’t have to pay Edwards his full salary because he has less than four years’ experience. The Bills paid him for three games, or $291,176. He would have made $1.65 million. So his release saved $1.35 million, or a little less than $1 million, depending on who replaces him on the 53-man roster. Also because he has fewer than four years' experience, he can be claimed by another team off waivers. We'll see if another team grabs him.

More quotes from players: Tight end Jonathan Stupar: "It’s something that’s obviously part of the game. People get released all the time. It is a little difficult to kind of swallow because ever since I’ve been here he’s been here, he’s been our quarterback. It’s disappointing but at the same time the organization’s got to make the decisions they make and it comes from up top. If they think we have a better chance of winning by doing this then that’s what we’ll do."

Quarterback Brian Brohm on whether he feels more prepared than past years, having taken more snaps through the off-season: "Yeah, I think so. It definitely helps that I was able to go the through the spring getting reps with the one’s, two’s and the three’s, go through training camp and getting quite a few reps while competing for that No.2 spot. I feel like I’m ready. I feel like I’m prepared for this opportunity and I just need to take advantage of it."

Receiver Roscoe Parrish: "It was a surprise to all of us. In the NFL you never know what will happen. One thing about it, you just got to come to work every day and prepare yourself. Like I said it’s the NFL, you never know what will happen."

Running back Fred Jackson on Edwards' decline over the past two seasons: "I don’t know if you could say one thing over anything happened. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to get enough wins. And I think more anything, that’s what it was. I’ve always said I think a lot of quarterbacks get the blame too much when you’re not winning. They get more blame than they’re supposed to. And I think, as a team, we just didn’t win enough football games and automatically the blame goes to the quarterback. But I think it falls on everybody’s shoulders in this locker room. We’ve got to go out and do whatever we can to start getting wins and hopefully we can help Fitz (Ryan Fitzpatrick) produce when he gets out there this weekend and kind of start moving forward."

---Mark Gaughan



Audio from One Bills Drive

Bills coach Chan Gailey and select players addressed the media today regarding the release of quarterback Trent Edwards. Below are the audio interviews:

Coach Chan Gailey

Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick

Receiver Roscoe Parrish

Quarterback Brian Brohm

---Jay Skurski

Teammates surprised by cut

The Bills players were surprised by the release of Trent Edwards.

Said receiver Roscoe Parrish: "It was a surprise to all of us. In the NFL you never know what will happen. One thing about it, you just got to come to work every day and prepare yourself. Like I said it’s the NFL, you never know what will happen. I’m pretty sure everybody is shocked. Its news that just hit us. … We have to move on. He had the C on his jersey. It stands for captain. He was our starting quarterback two weeks ago. Something like this happens, it’s got to be a shock to everybody."

Said starting QB Ryan Fitzpatrick: "I think it caught everybody off guard. Trent’s a well-respected, well-liked guy in the locker room. It’s hard any time a teammate gets let go. Personally for me this one’s pretty tough just because we spent so much time together the last year and a half. He’ll rebound and move on from this and we’ve got to move forward.

Fitzpatrick agreed it was a reminder of the bottom-line aspect of the NFL business. "Yeah, I think for a lot of the young guys on the team this is their first look at the business aspect of the NFL. Not saying it was right or wrong, they just felt it was a move that needed to be made. That’s just kind of the harshness of the NFL."

---Mark Gaughan


Gailey explains Edwards' release

Here was what Bills coach Chan Gailey said today about the team's release of Trent Edwards:

Those kind of decisions are never easy. He gave us everything he had. We just felt like were not going to go back that direction at the next juncture. We want to work with Brian Brohm. We’ll make a decision about whether or not we go back to a third quarterback or not. We may just hang with two here or we may go to another one. We’re still looking at our options there. Trent did the best he could. He’s a great young man and I wish him the best.

(What changed your position in the course of a week?) When you went into last week I felt like we wanted to see exactly how things went. After the way Fitz played yesterday I feel very confident about the direction we’re going. I think we want to look at Brian as our next option. That was the change.

(did not request move)

(Brohm has not proven he can be the guy, and Trent has played more than him. What do you think of that?) Nope Brohm hasn’t proven that he is. But we’ve seen enough in Brian that we feel like he has a chance. I don’t know if he is or not, but I feel like he has a chance, and it’s a guy that you’d like to give an opportunity to do something. He made the most of his last opportunity when he played in preseason. That’s not regular season. But it was close going in, like I said all along.

(How did Trent handle the news?) He handled it very professionally just like he handled the demotion the week before. He is a guy that handles everything straight on. He was disappointed but he understands it’s a business.

(Trent went from the starter to the No. 2 to off the team. That seems like a sudden move down. Why?) I understand that. And I can see where people would look at that and wonder what’s going on. But as I said I feel like it was close going in. I felt like as we looked and evaluated everything we’d seen up to this point, that was the direction for the future for our football team.

(When a QB has been removed from the lineup multiple times, is his leadership position on the team compromised?) You’d probably have to ask the other players, but in my experience of being around that, it’s never easy for a guy to be in and out, in and out, in and out. That’s never been an easy situation. So I’m probably answering your question in that yes, it could have happened. Whether it did or not I don’t know.

(Is Levi Brown going to be signed?) He’s a guy we would look at very closely. We liked him when he was here. We’ll see what happens today or tomorrow. We’re not going to try to rush into anything.

We just felt like instead of relegating him (Edwards) to scout team quarterback and third team, because we want to work with Brian Brohm, it was smarter to let him move on and try to get another job, get a new start for him and us to move on.

---Mark Gaughan

Bills release Trent Edwards

Trent Edwards' four-year tenure with the Buffalo Bills has come to an end.

The Bills today announced they have released the quarterback who less than a month ago was their starter.

Edwards lost his starting job last Monday to Ryan Fitzpatrick after the Bills began the season 0-2. Edwards struggled mightily in those games, throwing for just 241 yards and a 58.3 passer rating. The team's offense was last in the NFL in yards and points after the first two game.

The switch to Fitzpatrick came as a surprise, since Edwards took all the first-team reps in training camp and the preseason games. Fitzpatrick threw for 247 yards Sunday in a 38-30 loss in New England. He threw two touchdowns and two late interceptions.

Edwards, a former third-round pick out of Stanford in 2007, started 32 games in his career. He threw for 5,739 yards, 25 touchdowns and 27 interceptions.

Bills coach Chan Gailey will address the team's decision at 3 p.m. when he meets the media.

Review the talk at Allen Wilson's Bills Replay.

---Jay Skurski  

Bills Replay Live Chat

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Pick the player of the game

Kelsay close to extension deal

By Mark Gaughan

FOXBOROUGH – Buffalo Bills outside linebacker Chris Kelsay is close to an agreement on a contract extension with the team, sources tell The News.

Kelsay, 30, is in his eighth season with the Bills and has pleased the Bills’ new regime with his transition from defensive end to outside linebacker.

Kelsay is in the final year of a $5.75 million-a-year contract he signed before the 2007 season. The extension is believed to be in the range of $24 million. It’s believed the deal could be finalized within a week.

The Bills like Kelsay’s all-around game and see him as a sturdy outside linebacker and sound in his assignments. He has been a captain on defense three of the past four seasons, including this year. He is held in high regard by his position coach, Bob Sanders, who switched from coaching defensive line last season to outside linebackers this year. 

Kelsay is not a prime pass rusher. Kelsay has 22 sacks in his seven previous seasons. He had five sacks last season, two in 2008 and 2.5 in 2007. Even before this season, the Bills dropped him into coverage on zone blitzes a fair amount. He was fourth among defensive linemen in passes defensed in 2008.

Kelsay had a career-best 68 tackles last season. He was a second-round pick of the Bills in the 2003 NFL Draft.

Gronkowski wins Cowboys' FB job

Amherst native Chris Gronkowski is the last man standing at fullback for the Dallas Cowboys after the team released injured starter Deon Anderson. Gronkowski, who made the Cowboys' roster as an undrafted rookie, caught two passes and scored his first NFL touchdown against the Chicago Bears last Sunday.

Anderson, who started 18 of 38 career games in three seasons with the Cowboys, didn't play the first two games due to a torn meniscus in his left knee. He had surgery last week and was expected to miss at least two more weeks.

There was speculation in Dallas over the summer that Anderson might get cut at the end of the preseason because Gronkowski played so well and because Gronkowski can also play some H-back.

---Allen Wilson

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