Bills general manager Doug Whaley indicated at last month’s league meetings that his team would be exercising its fifth-year option on cornerback Stephon Gilmore. Now, the club has finalized that decision, picking up the 2016 option on Gilmore, according to Albert Breer of the NFL Network (via Twitter).
Gilmore, 24, led Bills cornerbacks with 873 defensive snaps last season, and had his best season yet, according to Pro Football Focus (subscription required) — the site graded him as the NFL’s 26th-best cornerback.
Because Gilmore was a top-10 pick – 10th overall, to be specific – his option will be pricier than players drafted later in the 2012 first round. For example, the Bengals reportedly picked up Dre Kirkpatrick‘s option earlier today, and will pay him $7.507MM for the 2016 season. Gilmore, on the other hand, is set to earn a salary of $11.082MM for ’16, unless his deal is renegotiated or extended.
For the complete breakdown of 2016 option decisions around the NFL, be sure to check out our tracker.