A long-term extension between the Bills and cornerback Stephon Gilmore does not appear close, Tyler Dunne of the Buffalo News reports. Gilmore sat out OTAs while angling for a new contract, but he’ll be in attendance for mandatory minicamp next week, according to Dunne’s BN colleague Vic Carrucci.
Back in February, Bills general manager Doug Whaley said that extending Gilmore, who is scheduled to play the 2016 season under his fifth-year option at a cost of $11.082MM, was a priority, and later indicated that inking long-term deals with core players like Gilmore would become the club’s focus following the draft. More than a month has passed since the draft concluded, and though no agreement has yet been reached, Carrucci reports that Buffalo will be “persistent” in trying to ink a new deal with Gilmore.
Given the rising salary cap, and the fact that he’ll be among the top corners available in free agency in 2017 (along with Trumaine Johnson and hybrid defender Tyrann Mathieu), Gilmore and his camp can make the argument that he deserves to be the highest-paid corner in the league, topping Josh Norman, who will make $15MM annually with the Redskins. The Bills, meanwhile, have incentive to extend Gilmore — by lowering his 2016 cap charge, the club will have extra money to possibly ink quarterback Tyrod Taylor to a new deal, as Carrucci observes.
Gilmore, the 10th overall pick in the 2012 draft, had another strong season in 2015, recording 36 tackles, three interceptions, and 18 passes defended. Despite only playing 12 games, the 25-year-old ranked as a top-10 cornerback, according to Pro Football Focus’ grades (subscription required).
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