AFC East Notes: Taylor, Bills, Patriots

Will Tyrod Taylor be the Bills‘ starting quarterback in 2018? That’s not happening unless he guides Buffalo to the playoffs, Rich Cimini of argues, and that appears to be a longshot. The Bills are already armed with two first-round picks in 2018 and that could give them the needed ammunition to get a top talent in the 2018 draft class like Sam Darnold or Josh Allen.

Taylor agreed to a restructured deal with the Bills this offseason, giving him a two-year, $30.5MM pact. However, the structure of the new deal guarantees him little beyond 2017. Only $1MM of his $10MM salary in 2018 is guaranteed and he’ll be due a $6MM roster bonus early on in the 2018 league year. If the Bills want to go in a new direction after this season, they can cut ties with him without much financial penalty.

Here’s more from the AFC East:

  • Aside from Stephon Gilmore, Mike Gillislee could have the highest impact of any Patriots free agent this year,’s Mike Reiss opines. However, he’s not sure as to whether the former Bills running back will be a clear upgrade over LeGarrette Blount. He’ll have support from Rex Burkhead (a fellow free agent addition), James White, Dion Lewis, and maybe D.J. Foster, but Gillislee will be the running back charged with replacing Blount’s production.
  • The Dolphins are considering sixth round pick Vincent Taylor as an option for the No. 3 defensive tackle role, but there are doubts about whether he is ready for such responsibilities. “I think [fifth-round pick Davon] Godchaux will be a solid rotational guy. But I thought Taylor stunk,” one AFC executive tells Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald. “I gave him a free agent grade. Stiff as hell. Just wasn’t that good a player.” Jackson continues to indicate that the No. 3 DT spot is a problem area for Miami, though they have yet to make a play for any of the available veterans at the position. If they can’t find a clear winner among journeyman Nick Williams, Lawrence Okoye, Godchaux, or Taylor, they might rethink that stance.
  • Beyond receiver, the Dolphins‘ best bottom of the roster competition is at defensive back, Jackson writes. Walt Aikens, who can play both safety and corner, is the frontrunner for a spot. After him, there’s Jordan Lucas, undrafted rookie Maurice Smith, Lafayette Pitts, and A.J. Hendy competing for either one job or two jobs. It will be two jobs up for grabs if the Dolphins opt for ten defensive backs in total during T.J. McDonald’s eight-game suspension.
View Comments (0)