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LB Bryan Scott, DT Torell Troup, QB Thad Lewis among Bills cuts

By Tim Graham

The Buffalo Bills are under the roster limit after dropping five more players this afternoon. Teams had until 6 p.m. to reduce their rosters to 53 players.

The released players:

  • Quarterback Thad Lewis
  • Defensive end Jamie Blatnick
  • Defensive end Izaan Cross
  • Defensive tackle Torell Troup
  • Linebacker Bryan Scott

Although Lewis was an interesting sidelight over the past week, Scott and Troup are the most notable cuts of this quintet.

Scott has played 10 NFL seasons as a defensive back and linebacker. He was a hybrid defender who the Bills hoped would help guard the NFL's new wave of athletic tight ends such as Rob Gronkowski, Aaron Hernandez and Jimmy Graham.

Scott was fifth in tackles last year with 64. His four interceptions and eight pass breakups each ranked second on the team. He returned one of his interceptions for the Bills' only defensive touchdown of the season. He also had two forced fumbles and two recoveries.

Troup will forever remembered as the player the Bills selected one spot ahead of Gronkowski in the 2010 draft. Troup played 15 games as a rookie and started two. he played only six games in his second season and zero last year.

Kyle Moore signs with Bears; Revolving Bills roster updated

By Tim Graham

The Buffalo Bills lost another free agent.

Kyle Moore, a surprise performer last year on a disappointing defensive front, signed a one-year contract Monday with the Chicago Bears.

Moore, despite being inactive the first four games, started seven straight games in November and December. Moore made 24 tackles, three for losses. He notched the first three sacks of his career.

Analytics website ProFootballFocus.com rated Moore 25th in pass-rushing among all 4-3 defensive ends who played at least 25 percent of their teams' snaps. The site tallied 23 quarterback hurries for Moore, tying him for 30th in the NFL.

Moore had arthroscopic knee surgery in January, but a source informed The Buffalo News the Bills wanted to re-sign him. But last month's acquisition of linebacker Manny Lawson might have made Moore expendable.

Moore was a Tampa Bay Buccaneers fourth-round draft choice in 2009 and eventually landed on the Detroit Lions' practice squad, from where the Bills plucked him in November 2011.

An update accounting of the comings and goings on Buffalo's roster in free agency:

Players who have re-signed

  • • Quarterback Tarvaris Jackson
  • • Running back Tashard Choice
  • • Tight end Dorin Dickerson
  • • Colin Brown
  • • Linebacker Bryan Scott
  • • Cornerback Leodis McKelvin

Players whose rights have been retained

  • • Tight end Mike Caussin
  • • Safety Jairus Byrd

Players who have joined

  • • Quarterback Kevin Kolb
  • • Defensive tackle Alan Branch
  • • Linebacker Manny Lawson

Players who have departed

  • • Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick (Tennessee Titans)
  • • Wide receiver Donald Jones (New England Patriots)
  • • Wide receiver David Nelson (Cleveland Browns)
  • • Guard Andy Levitre (Tennessee Titans)
  • • Guard Chad Rinehart (San Diego Chargers)
  • • Defensive end Chris Kelsay (retired)
  • • Defensive end Shawne Merriman (retired)
  • • Defensive end Kyle Moore (Chicago Bears)
  • • Linebacker Nick Barnett
  • • Cornerback Terrence McGee
  • • Safety George Wilson (Tennessee Titans)

Comings and goings: Buffalo Bills offseason moves so far

By Tim Graham

And on the seventh day of free agency, the Press Coverage blog reviewed the Buffalo Bills' offseason personnel moves to date ...

Players who have re-signed

  • • Quarterback Tarvaris Jackson
  • • Linebacker Bryan Scott
  • • Cornerback Leodis McKelvin

Players whose rights were retained

  • • Tight end Mike Caussin
  • • Tight end Dorin Dickerson
  • • Safety Jairus Byrd

Players who have joined

  • • Linebacker Manny Lawson

Players who have departed

  • • Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick (Tennessee Titans)
  • • Wide receiver Donald Jones (New England Patriots)
  • • Wide receiver David Nelson
  • • Guard Andy Levitre (Tennessee Titans)
  • • Guard Chad Rinehart (San Diego Chargers)
  • • Defensive end Chris Kelsay (retired)
  • • Defensive end Shawne Merriman (retired)
  • • Linebacker Nick Barnett
  • • Cornerback Terrence McGee
  • • Safety George Wilson (Tennessee Titans)

Audio: Bills talk and general tomfoolery on 1270 The Fan

By Tim Graham

 What an honor it was to get a tour around the facilities at One Shredd and Ragan Plaza and then sit down for an hour in studio with "The Rich Gaenzler Show" on Sports Radio 1270 The Fan.

We reviewed all the Buffalo Bills' recent moves, including the re-signing of linebacker Bryan Scott and Shawne Merriman's retirement. We analyzed the Ryan Fitzpatrick situation, previewed next week's start of free agency, haggled the best and worst jobs in sports and even pondered the World Baseball Classic.

The audio files are in two parts, about 16 minutes each. Give a listen and learn new ways to tap into the secrets of life.

Part I:

Part II:

Bryan Scott tweets he's re-signing with Buffalo

By Tim Graham

Buffalo Bills linebacker Bryan Scott has tweeted he will be re-signing for 2013.

Scott didn't divulge terms, but posted a photo of the top of his contract along with two messages:

Scott was fifth on the Bills with 64 tackles last season and was perhaps the Bills' best big-play defender with six takeaways, including an interception return for a touchdown.

He tied for the team lead with two forced fumbles, was second to safety Jairus Byrd in interceptions with four and second to cornerback Stephon Gilmore in pass breakups with eight.

Hits and whiffs: The best and worst Buffalo Bills tacklers

By Tim Graham

Pro Football Focus tweeted an amazing stat this afternoon.

Denver Broncos linebacker Von Miller last season missed one tackle on 576 passing snaps and one tackle on 339 running snaps. The average distance downfield that Miller made a tackle was 0.25 yards away from the line of scrimmage.

With that in mind, I wanted to see who the Buffalo Bills' most efficient tacklers were in PFF's play-by-play review.

Continue reading "Hits and whiffs: The best and worst Buffalo Bills tacklers" »

For the record: Breakdown of Bills 2013 free-agent class

By Tim Graham

Here is a breakdown of the Buffalo Bills' 2013 free-agent class and what their designations mean.

Unrestricted free agents (13)

Teams have exclusive negotiating rights, but once free-agency begins, players are free to negotiate with other clubs. Original team receives no compensation if the player signs elsewhere.

The original team has the option to place a franchise tag on one unrestricted free agent (a guaranteed one-year salary at the average of the five highest-paid players at the position or a 20 percent raise, whichever is greater) or one transition tag (a guaranteed one-year salary at the average of the 10 highest-paid players at the position).

"Exclusive" franchise tags prohibit the player from negotiating with other clubs. A team that uses a "nonexclusive" franchise tag on a player and then declines to match an offer sheet from another club will receive two first-round draft choices from that team. Transition tags offer no such compensation.

  • • Jairus Byrd, safety
  • • Tashard Choice, running back
  • • Tarvaris Jackson, quarterback
  • • Spencer Johnson, defensive end
  • • Andy Levitre, left guard
  • • Ruvell Martin, wide receiver
  • • Corey McIntyre, fullback
  • • Leodis McKelvin, cornerback
  • • Shawne Merriman, defensive end
  • • Kyle Moore, defensive end
  • • Chad Rinehart, offensive lineman
  • • Bryan Scott, linebacker
  • • Tyler Thigpen, quarterback

Restricted free agents (3)

The player may negotiate with other teams. But if the original club extends a qualifying offer to the player, then it retains right of first refusal to match any outside contract offer. There are three types of qualifying offers, offering different levels of payment and draft compensation if the player leaves.

Exclusive-rights free agents (2)

ERFA's are free agents in name only. They are players with two years of NFL experience or less and have expiring contracts. They may not negotiate with other clubs. If they are extended a contract offer, they must accept or not play at all.

  • • Mike Caussin, tight end
  • • Dorin Dickerson, tight end/fullback
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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 | tgraham@buffnews.com


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 | mgaughan@buffnews.com


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 | jskurski@buffnews.com

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