The Bills are cutting Star Lotulelei (Twitter link via NFL.com’s Mike Garafolo). The two sides were discussing a revamped contract that would have enabled him to return, but all parties agreed that a fresh start would be best.
Lotulelei, 33 in December, was in the midst of the five-year, $50MM deal he signed in 2018. He exercised his right to opt out of the 2020 season due to COVID concerns, which tolled his contract and would have had him under Buffalo’s control through 2023.
The eight-year veteran had three sacks in 2021, bringing his career total to 16.5. He’s been a quality disruptor in the past, particularly with the Panthers, but the advanced metrics at Pro Football Focus haven’t been high on his work in quite some time. This past year, Lotulelei graded as Bills’ lowest performing run defender on the D-Line.
Lotulelei was slated to carry a $9.2MM cap charge this year. Instead, the Bills will save at least $1.5MM against the cap by cutting him. They could also choose to save $4.1MM this year if they use the post-June 1 designation.
All in all, Lotulelei leaves Buffalo after 43 appearances (40 starts) with five sacks, one interception, and 53 tackles.