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How Bills spent $9.77 million on Shawne Merriman

By Tim Graham

In less than two years, pass-rusher Shawne Merriman played five games for the Buffalo Bills and never got to do this Lights Out dance. He recorded one sack, the closest defender when Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton ran out of bounds.

The Bills cut Merriman this morning. We'll get their reasons when Bills coach Chan Gailey holds his regularly scheduled news conference later today. We also might hear from General Manager Buddy Nix.

In the meantime, let's take a look at the money the Bills paid Merriman since they claimed him off waivers in November 2010.

NFL Players Association documentation puts the total price tag at $9.77 million.

The breakdown:

$3.27 million pro rated salary for 2010
$1.5 million signing bonus for two-year extension in January 2011
$500,000 roster bonus for 2011
$500,000 workout bonus for 2011
$2.75 million base salary for 2011
$1 million roster bonus for 2012
$250,000 workout bonus for 2012

Merriman would've been due a base salary of $4 million for this season, with $3 million of that guaranteed if he had been released before the season began because of injury or salary-cap reasons.

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About Press Coverage

Tim Graham

Tim Graham

Tim Graham returned to The Buffalo News in 2011 after covering the NFL for three years at ESPN and for one year at the Palm Beach Post. Before that, the Cleveland native spent seven seasons on the Buffalo Sabres beat for The News and was president of the Boxing Writers Association of America.

@ByTimGraham |

Mark Gaughan

Mark Gaughan

Buffalo native Mark Gaughan started working at The News in 1980 and has been covering the Bills exclusively since 1992. He is a former president of the Pro Football Writers of America, and he is a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame selection committee.

@gggaughan |

Jay Skurski

Jay Skurski

Jay Skurski joined The News in January 2009. The Lewiston native attended St. Francis High School before graduating from the University of South Florida. He writes a weekly Fantasy column in addition to his beat writing duties.

@JaySkurski |