Buffalo Bills Rumors & News

Bills Hire Rick Dennison As OC

The Bills announced that they’ve hired longtime NFL coach Rick Dennison as their new offensive coordinator.Rick Dennison (Vertical)

[RELATED: 2017 Offensive/Defensive Coordinator Search Tracker]

Dennison, 58, boasts an expansive offensive coaching career, and most recently served as Denver’s play-caller under former head coach Gary Kubiak. New Denver head coach Vance Joseph opted to overhaul the majority of the Broncos’ offensive staff, meaning Dennison and most of his assistants became coaching free agents. Dennison, who also coached alongside Kubiak in both Houston and Baltimore, will presumably bring his zone-blocking scheme to Buffalo, a dramatic shift from the Bills’ recent man-blocking run game.

In Dennison, first-time head coach Sean McDermott adds a veteran offensive mind after striking out during the early part of his search for a new coordinator. Former Jaguars OC Greg Olson was viewed as a favorite for the job, but ultimately spurned Buffalo in order to accept the Rams’ quarterbacks coach gig. Former Chargers head coach Mike McCoy and Chiefs co-offensive coordinator Brad Childress were also viewed as candidates, while the Bills last night interviewed Panthers QBs coach Ken Dorsey for the role.

What exactly Dennison is inheriting in Buffalo is unclear, especially at the quarterback position, where the Bills are fully expected to move on from incumbent quarterback Tyrod Taylor. Buffalo does feature one of the more impressive run units in the league (1st in rushing DVOA in 2016), but without knowing who will be under center Week 1, it’s difficult to evaluate how Dennison will approach his new job. Dennison does have a connection to Taylor, as he served as Baltimore’s QBs coach while Taylor acted as Joe Flacco‘s backup in 2014.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Bills Interview Ken Dorsey For OC

New Bills head coach Sean McDermott is continuing his search for an offensive coordinator by interviewing Panthers quarterbacks coach Ken Dorsey for the position on Wednesday, a source tells Joe Person of the Charlotte Observer.Ken Dorsey (Vertical)

[RELATED: 2017 Offensive/Defensive Coordinator Search Tracker]

Buffalo has already struck out on several offensive coordinator candidates, with the latest being former Jaguars play-caller Greg Olson, who spurned the Bills in order to become the Rams’ quarterback coach. McDermott & Co. was also thought to have interest in Chiefs co-offensive coordinator Brad Childress, but a recent report indicated that Childress is no longer in contention for the position. Former Chargers head coach Mike McCoy was also considered a candidate, but he’s already been hired by Denver.

Dorsey, 35, has worked with McDermott in Carolina for the past several years — the former Miami Hurricane quarterback was initially hired as a pro scout before the Panthers named him their QBs coach in 2013. Dorsey, who carved out a six-year NFL as a backup signal-caller, helped lead Cam Newton to his MVP season in 2015 and has long been thought of as a future offensive coordinator.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Rams To Hire Greg Olson As QBs Coach

Greg Olson seemed like a lock to become the Bills’ next offensive coordinator, but they’re going to have to look elsewhere. Olson is on his way to the Rams to serve as their quarterbacks coach, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter (Twitter link).

Greg Olson (Vertical)

In Los Angeles, Olson will reunite with newly minted head coach Sean McVay. The two previously worked together in Tampa Bay and will now exert heavy influence over the development of young signal-caller Jared Goff, the No. 1 pick in last year’s draft. Olson has plenty of experience tutoring quarterbacks as both a position coach and coordinator. He has been part of several staffs, including the Rams’ (2006-07), since his NFL coaching career began in 2001.

Olson was most recently a coordinator in Jacksonville, where QB Blake Bortles hasn’t quite panned out since going third overall in 2014. Thanks in part to that, Olson lost his job with the Jaguars last October.

In rejecting the Bills for the Rams, Olson turned down “much more” money, per Vic Carucci of the Buffalo News. Staying in close proximity to his family was a motivating factor, Carucci adds (Twitter links).

When Brad Childress exited the race for the Bills’ O-coordinator role Tuesday, it appeared Olson would land the job. The Bills even hired one of Olson’s previous offensive assistants, running backs coach Kelly Skipper, on Wednesday. But it turns out he’ll serve under someone else in Buffalo. That could be Packers quarterbacks coach Alex Van Pelt, tweets CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora. Van Pelt was a longtime backup QB with the Bills and had a stint as their OC in 2009.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Bills Hire Kelly Skipper As RBs Coach

  • The Bills have named Kelly Skipper their running backs coach, per Mike Rodak of ESPN.com. Skipper previously held those roles in Oakland and Jacksonville, two places where he worked under then-offensive coordinator Greg Olson. The connection is notable because Olson is the only known candidate for the Bills’ O-coordinator job.

NFLPA Announces Cap Carryover Amounts

The NFL Players Association has announced all 32 teams’ salary cap carryover amounts for the 2017 season (Twitter link). Next season’s cap figure isn’t yet known, but it’s likely to be in the $165MM range. When that becomes official, it can be added to each team’s carryover amount to determine that club’s official spending room for 2017.

Here are this year’s carryover totals:

  1. Cleveland Browns: $50,123,269
  2. Jacksonville Jaguars: $39,314,310
  3. San Francisco 49ers: $38,708,916
  4. Tennessee Titans: $24,046,522
  5. Washington Redskins: $15,055,131
  6. Carolina Panthers: $13,208,020
  7. Miami Dolphins: $8,363,708
  8. Chicago Bears: $8,103,197
  9. Oakland Raiders: $8,000,000
  10. Green Bay Packers: $7,984,687
  11. Philadelphia Eagles: $7,933,869
  12. Denver Broncos: $7,243,248
  13. Indianapolis Colts: $6,614,106
  14. Cincinnati Bengals: $6,578,866
  15. New Orleans Saints: $5,754,000
  16. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: $5,330,779
  17. New England Patriots: $5,292,335
  18. Kansas City Chiefs: $5,002,168
  19. Houston Texans: $4,935,924
  20. Detroit Lions: $4,725,644
  21. Arizona Cardinals: $4,405,068
  22. Pittsburgh Steelers: $3,269,367
  23. Buffalo Bills: $2,837,222
  24. Baltimore Ravens: $2,553,126
  25. Dallas Cowboys: $2,401,553
  26. Seattle Seahawks: $2,065,865
  27. New York Giants: $1,800,000
  28. Atlanta Falcons: $926,541
  29. Minnesota Vikings: $400,184
  30. New York Jets: $371,487
  31. Los Angeles Rams: $304,311
  32. Los Angeles Chargers: $113,693

2017 Proven Performance Escalators

According to the NFL’s contractual bargaining agreement, players drafted in rounds three though seven are entitled to raises during the fourth year of their respective rookie contracts. The pay bumps are tied to playing time — a player must have played in 35% of his team’s offensive or defensive snaps in two of his first three seasons, or averaged 35% playing time cumulatively during that period.Donte Moncrief (Vertical)

If one of these thresholds is met, the player’s salary is elevated to the level of that year’s lowest restricted free agent tender — that figure should be around $1.8MM in 2017. Players selected in the first or second round, undrafted free agents, and kickers/punters are ineligible for the proven performance escalator.

Here are the players who will see their salary rise in 2017 courtesy of the proven performance escalator:

49ers: Aaron Lynch, LB; Marcus Martin, OL

Bears: Charles Leno, T; Will Sutton, DT

Bengals: Russell Bodine, C

Bills: Preston Brown, LB; Seantrel Henderson, T

Broncos: Michael Schofield, OL

Browns: Christian Kirksey, LB

Buccaneers: Kevin Pamphile, G

Cardinals: John Brown, WR

Chiefs: Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, G; Zach Fulton, G; Phillip Gaines, CB

Colts: Donte Moncrief, WR

Cowboys: Anthony Hitchens, LB

Falcons: Devonta Freeman, RB

Giants: Devon Kennard, LB

Jaguars: Aaron Colvin, CB; Brandon Linder, G; Telvin Smith, LB

Lions: Nevin Lawson, CB; Travis Swanson, C

Packers: Corey Linsley, C; Richard Rodgers, TE

Panthers: Tre Boston, S; Trai Turner, G

Raiders: T.J. Carrie, CB; Justin Ellis, DT; Gabe Jackson, G

Rams: Maurice Alexander, S; E.J. Gaines, CB

Redskins: Bashaud Breeland, CB; Spencer Long, G; Morgan Moses, T

Texans: C.J. Fiedorowicz, TE; Andre Hal, S

Titans: DaQuan Jones, DL; Avery Williamson, LB

Vikings: Shamar Stephen, DT

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Bills Name Rob Boras Tight Ends Coach

The Bills have hired ex-Rams offensive coordinator Rob Boras to serve as their tight ends coach, Mike Rodak of ESPN.com was among those to report.

Rob Boras

Boras, 46, was atop the Rams’ offense the past two seasons. The unit was woeful in each of those years, ranking 29th in DVOA in 2015 and dead last in 2016. The Rams also finished this season 32nd in both yardage (262.7 per game – nearly 50 fewer than the 31st-place offense) and scoring (14.0 PPG). As a result, Boras’ career as a coordinator is over for at least the time being. He previously worked as a tight ends coach with the Bears, Jaguars and Rams, and will now return to that role.

It’s not yet known whose offensive staff Boras will be a member of in Buffalo. New head coach Sean McDermott hasn’t named a coordinator, but signs are pointing to Greg Olson landing the job. He’s also a previous Rams and Jags assistant, though his stints with those teams did not coincide with Boras’.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Bills Unlikely To Hire Brad Childress As OC

The Bills’ search for an offensive coordinator is seemingly down to one known candidate. While Greg Olson and Chiefs co-offensive coordinator Brad Childress were the reported front-runners for the job as of Sunday, it now appears the latter is no longer in contention, according to the Buffalo News’ Vic Carucci (Twitter link).

Brad Childress

It’s unclear whether the Bills are honing in on Olson, thereby leading to a lack of interest in Childress, or if Childress declined any overtures from the club. Either way, Olson will interview with Buffalo on Thursday as it seeks a replacement for ex-offensive coordinator and now-Chargers head coach Anthony Lynn.

The Bills’ new sideline leader, Sean McDermott, has already tabbed Leslie Frazier as his defensive coordinator. Now, with Childress and newly minted Broncos assistant Mike McCoy out of the running, Olson looks to be in the lead to serve as McDermott’s offensive chief. Olson last worked as the O-coordinator in Jacksonville, which fired him in October.

Kansas City, meanwhile, now appears poised to keep the tandem of Childress and Matt Nagy intact. Nagy would have been in line to become the Chiefs’ sole offensive coordinator had Childress gone to the Bills. Along with head coach Andy Reid, Childress and Nagy guided KC’s offense to a 13th-place DVOA ranking in 2016.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Aaron Williams Intends To Keep Playing

  • Bills safety Aaron Williams has dealt with mulitple neck injuries, but his dad told John Wawrow of the Associated Press that the former second-rounder intends to keep playing. “He’s leaning toward coming back,” Anthony Williams said. “We’ll take it slow and go from there.” The 26-year-old has been productive when he’s been on the field, but he’s been limited to only 10 games over the past two seasons.

    [SOURCE LINK]

Bills To Interview Greg Olson For OC Job

Greg Olson has a chance to land on his feet quickly despite being dismissed from his previous position midway through the season. The Bills are interviewing the former Jaguars OC, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com reports (on Twitter).

Buffalo is interviewing Olson for its OC position. A report emerging Sunday pegged Olson and Chiefs co-offensive coordinator Brad Childress as the frontrunners for this job. The 53-year-old assistant is gunning for his sixth OC job after having worked with the Lions, Rams, Buccaneers, Raiders and Jaguars since 2004. After hiring Leslie Frazier to run his defense, Sean McDermott looks to be making a concerted effort to surround himself with experience at the coordinator spots.

The Jags fired Olson this season, which comprised the second year of his second stint with the team, after the offense sputtered compared to its 2015 performance. At the time of Olson’s dismissal, the team ranked 28th in passing DVOA. Jacksonville finished 3-13 in one of the more disappointing seasons in franchise history, but the coaches in charge have either been hired or retained as coordinators or are deep in the running for such a position.

Gus Bradley is the priority candidate to latch on with the Chargers as DC, and the Jaguars retained both DC Todd Wash and OC Nathaniel Hackett, whom they promoted to fill Olson’s position. Mike McCoy previously resided as the Bills’ frontrunner here, but the Broncos hired him back as OC, inducing a more expansive search.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.