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Fred Davis looms as Bills TE option

By Mark Gaughan

Washington Redskins free agent Fred Davis is the best option left on the free agent market at the tight end position, and the Buffalo Bills are interested in the five-year veteran. Bills officials met with him Saturday, a league source confirmed. ESPN reported the interest earlier today.

Davis, 27, is recovering from a torn Achilles tendon, suffered on Oct. 21, in Week Seven of last season. He is an athletic tight end with a big frame and good hands. He emerged as one of the quality players at the position in 2011, when he caught 59 passes for 796 yards in the first 12 games. Then he was suspended for the final four games of the season for violating the NFL's substance abuse policy.

Davis, a former second-round pick, was off to a pretty good start last season, with 24 catches, before suffering the Achilles injury early in a game against the New York Giants.

Washington is interested in getting Davis back, but the Redskins do not have a lot of space under the NFL salary cap.

"You'd love to see Fred back," said Redskins coach Mike Shanahan on the team's website. "Any time you have an Achilles, it’s going to set you back. You’ve got to work extremely hard in the offseason, because if you can come back at 80 percent, that’s still pretty good. You’re shooting for 90 percent, but very seldom do you come back at 100 percent."

The Bills need another tight end because starter Scott Chandler suffered a knee injury in December, and his recovery could take seven to 10 months.

There are not many quality options left at tight end on the unrestricted market. Former Giant Kevin Boss has had a good career, but he has been troubled by numerous concussions and played only two games last season as a result. Also still available are Dallas Clark, who will be 34 in June, and former Saint David Thomas.


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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 |