ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (WIVB) — As the Bills’ offseason gets underway, the team is hoping to bring back two of their biggest defensive pieces who are both free agents.
Linebacker Tremaine Edmunds and safety Jordan Poyer are both set to become unrestricted free agents this spring after the two of them headed up the Buffalo defensive unit this season.
“Two guys that are true Buffalo Bills,” general manager Brandon Beane said at his end-of-year press conference on Tuesday. “Can’t say enough good things about them.”
Edmunds, who has been with the Bills since he was drafted in the first round in 2018, recorded 66 solo tackles this season, a sack and an interception. Poyer, meanwhile, had 44 solo tackles and four interceptions, doing so in 12 games after missing five due to injuries. Poyer will be 32 years old by the start of next season.
Poyer had been open last summer that he was hoping for a long-term extension to stay in Buffalo, but that did not happen.
“I give Jordan a lot of credit. He’s a pro. The whole contract thing, people could handle that in many different ways, but a lot of respect for the way Jordan handled this,” Beane said. “We’d love to get him back, for sure.”
Meanwhile, Poyer’s wife, model Rachel Bush, tweeted Tuesday, “Still taking time to process all this while packing our house completely up for the first time in 6 years. Seems surreal. Bills Mafia, regardless of what happens-whatever comes of Jordan’s FA this year, y’all have been AMAZING these past few years. THANK YOU.”
Edmunds will hit the open market at 24 years old. Beane said that the Bills will look into using a franchise tag on Edmunds. He praised Edmunds as well and would like to get him back.
“He’s been amazing to watch his growth from a 19-year-old. It’s not like he’s 29, he’s still a kid,” Beane said. “He’s been a big part of our success as well.”
However, bringing those two back won’t be easy. The Bills are set to be several million dollars over the salary cap for the 2023 season, so making some moves will have to be necessary in order to bring back some of the key talents. Also, Beane said not to expect a major free agency signing.
“The short answer is, we’re gonna have to get under the cap, whether that be by moves, could be roster cuts,” Beane said. “There’s not going to be a Von Miller signing or somebody like that. We’re going to have to work to get under the cap so we can operate next year.”
He said of potentially using a franchise tag on Edmunds, “That number can be high, so we’d have to really make some room to do that for him, but we’ll look at it.”
The ultimate goal is to bring back as many players as they can, while holding to the financial constraints.
“We’d love to keep them all,” Beane said. “We’ll do our best.”