Bills Rumors

Minor NFL Transactions: 8/19/18

Here are today’s minor moves:

Buffalo Bills

Carolina Panthers

Detroit Lions

Green Bay Packers

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

  • Claimed off waivers: DT Adam Reth

Bills Notes: McCoy, Carter

  • While a few more details have emerged regarding Bills running back LeSean McCoy and the pending lawsuit against him (which alleges McCoy was responsible for a recent physical attack on his ex-girlfriend, Buffalo general manager Brandon Beane said “nothing’s changed” with regard to McCoy’s status with the club. “You take all allegations seriously, but until the police say there’s something there, we’re not going to act on anything without them saying there’s legit evidence,” Beane told Kate Brumback and John Wawrow of the Associated Press. “It’s an open investigation. Nothing has come forward that said any of these things are true. So until that would happen, I don’t think anything will ever change.” McCoy could potentially be placed on the commissioner’s exempt list depending on the state of the NFL’s investigation, but at this point, it appears he’ll be on the Bills’ active roster for Week 1, barring any further developments.
  • Bills punter Cory Carter suffered a torn ACL in Friday night’s preseason game, tweets Ian Rapoport of NFL.com. Carter, who went undrafted out of Texas Southern in 2016, spent training camp with the Texans last summer but has never appeared in an NFL contest. While he was unlikely to unseat starting punter Colton Schmidt in Buffalo, Carter was one of only two punters on the Bills’ roster, so the team could conceivably add another specialist in the coming days. Carter, meanwhile, will likely be waived/injured and subsequently moved to injured reserve, where he’ll spend the 2018 campaign.

CB Kayvon Webster To Visit Three Teams

It’s been a quiet offseason for Kayvon Webster, but it sounds like the cornerback is finally lining up some suitors. ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports (via Twitter) that the free agent will visit with the Texans, Bills, and Lions next week.

After the Rams added some high-profile cornerbacks to their roster, the team released Webster back in April. While the 27-year-old hasn’t shown the promise that made him a third-round pick out of South Florida in 2013, he has had some productive stretches. He had one of his best NFL seasons in 2017, compiling 38 tackles, seven passes defended, and one interception in 11 games. A torn Achilles’ tendon ended his season in December, and he finished the year in the lower half of Pro Football Focus’ cornerback rankings.

Each of Webster’s three suitors could use some cornerback depth, especially the Lions. The team is currently rostering only three players at the position behind starters Darius Slay and Teez Tabor, so Webster could easily push for a roster spot. The same is true in Buffalo, where the team has only four backups in Phillip GainesTaron JohnsonLafayette Pitts, and Breon Borders.

It might be a bit tougher for the free agent to earn a roster spot in Houston, as the Texans currently have eight cornerbacks on their roster. However, considering Webster’s productive 2017 season, he could logically push for a key reserve role, as he’d have to compete with the likes of Kevin Johnson, Johnson Bademosi, and Treston Decoud.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Bills Notes: Quarterbacks, Williams, O’Leary

Running back Marcus Murphy continues to improve his chances of making the Bills’ 53-man roster. The 2015 seventh-round had a brief cameo with Buffalo last season, but he had showed some intriguing flashes during his tenure with the Saints. His talents have been on display during the preseason, as he’s compiled 74 yards and one touchdown in 11 carries (he’s also hauled in four catches).

“I just want to make a play,” Murphy told Branson Wright of Cleveland.com. “Whenever an opportunity is given, I just want to make the most of it. It doesn’t matter if it’s being a running back, punt returner or kick returner. I just want to be a playmaker whenever I get the chance.”

“I appreciate the coaching staff giving me an opportunity. I want to show them that they can trust me to make a play and show that I’m able to execute whenever they need me to.”

Jay Skurski of the Buffalo News is ready to give Murphy a spot on the opening-day roster, and the writer cites the struggles of current number-three running back Travaris Cadet. Otherwise, Murphy would be competing with Taiwan Jones for a role behind LeSean McCoy and Chris Ivory.

Let’s take a look at some more notes out of Buffalo…

  • While Skurski is willing to hand Murphy a roster spot, he wonders if tight end Nick O’Leary is on the roster bubble. While the 25-year-old did finish last night’s preseason win over the Browns with a team-leading four catches for 70 yards and one touchdown, he didn’t end up taking the field until the second half. If the former sixth-rounder has any hopes of making the Bills, he’ll have to beat out Jason Croom, Logan Thomas and Khari Lee for backup reps behind Charles Clay. O’Leary finished last season with 22 receptions for 322 yards and two touchdowns in 15 games (five starts).
  • Quarterback A.J. McCarron suffered a hairline fracture in his collarbone during last night’s preseason game. NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport tweets that the signal-caller will end up missing “several weeks,” but a definitive timetable hasn’t been set. Meanwhile, ESPN’s Mike Rodak isn’t ready to hand the starting quarterback gig to first-rounder Josh Allen. The reporter notes (on Twitter) that head coach Sean McDermott has a high opinion of backup Nathan Peterman, and McCarron’s injury shouldn’t force the coach to “stray from his “calculated” plan about Allen.” Rodak believes the two healthy quarterbacks will split reps during next weekend’s game against the Bengals, although he also wonders if the team may end up adding another quarterback to the roster.
  • Defensive lineman Kyle Williams went down with a knee injury during last night’s game, but Rapoport tweets that the Pro Bowler’s ACL wasn’t injured. If the MRI confirms that prognosis, the 35-year-old “could return this season.” That still sounds like a rather grim outlook for the defensive tackle, but the MRI will likely provide specific details on the severity of the injury. The five-time Pro Bowler has spent his entire 12-year career with Buffalo, and he finished last season with 41 tackles and three sacks. If he is indeed forced to miss time, the Bills will likely turn to Harrison Phillips or Adolphus Washington for a bigger role.

A.J. McCarron Fractures Collarbone

A.J. McCarron suffered an injury during his first preseason start with the Bills, and it appears likely it will affect the franchise’s quarterback plans going forward. The free agent addition suffered a hairline fracture in his collarbone, Vic Carucci of the Buffalo News reports (on Twitter).

McCarron started over Nathan Peterman on Friday night in Cleveland but may have to cede the reins to the younger passer now. Peterman started the Bills’ first preseason game, but McCarron represents the bigger investment, having signed a two-year, $8.1MM deal this offseason. He was viewed as the stopgap quarterback that will provide the bridge to Josh Allen.

Allen figures to see more time as a result of McCarron’s setback, and although the Wyoming product was not viewed as a ready-made NFL signal-caller, his NFL audition could come sooner than previously expected if McCarron misses extensive time.

McCarron’s only relevant NFL work came because of a 2015 Andy Dalton injury, and after a trade to the Browns fell through at the last minute last year, a setback in Cleveland ten months later may deny him a chance at a surefire starting role. Peterman has one game of NFL starting experience, but that start turned out to be one of the worst in NFL history. But he may be the next man up.

Poll: Who Should Bills Start At QB?

The Bills started A.J. McCarron at quarterback Friday night in Cleveland after giving Nathan Peterman the initial start of the preseason. For a playoff team, Buffalo’s proceeded in interesting fashion and has three unique choices to start going into the regular season.

In trading the quarterback who helped them snap major North American sports’ longest playoff drought, the Bills look to be less equipped to make a playoff run this season. Tyrod Taylor had his share of detractors, and the new Bills regime was obviously not sold he was anything more than a stopgap, but his three years’ worth of starter experience represented a higher floor than any of the team’s current options.

So, Buffalo appears to be in a worse spot at sports’ premier job entering the 2018 season. The Bills, who have Las Vegas’ second-worst odds to win Super Bowl LIII, appear to have willingly taken a step back in hopes of reloading for the future.

They signed McCarron to seemingly be the bridge to whatever quarterback they chose in Round 1, which turned out to be Josh Allen. But the fifth-year passer has yet to seize the role. McCarron is still competing with Peterman, the latter having looked better than the higher-paid ex-Bengal during several junctures of the offseason. But McCarron signed a two-year, $8.1MM contract. Peterman has three years left on his rookie deal.

While the 2017 fifth-round pick endured last season’s most disastrous start, his five-interception outing in Los Angeles, he’s clearly shown more as an NFL sophomore. But can the Bills turn back to him after that start and having made two bigger investments at QB?

Explaining why McCarron and Peterman were going to receive first-team work over Allen to start camp, Brandon Beane said the team was committed to giving his team’s veterans the best chance to win this season. But the Bills are not expected to contend in 2018. And they made multiple first-round trades up to select Allen at No. 7. If he shows increased NFL readiness during the preseason’s remainder, would a rebuilding team throw the mid-major prodigy into action early?

So, should the Bills open the season with McCarron, finally giving Andy Dalton’s longtime backup a real chance to prove he’s an NFL starter? Or should Peterman’s improved offseason grant him a second chance? Should the Bills throw a curveball and begin the Allen era now? Vote in PFR’s latest poll and weigh in with your thoughts in the comments section!

Corey Coleman Requested Trade

Minor NFL Transactions: 8/16/18

Today’s minor moves:

Buffalo Bills

Chicago Bears

Denver Broncos

  • Signed: DT DeQuinton Osborne
  • Waived/injured: DT Paul Boyette

Minor NFL Transactions: 8/15/18

Today’s minor moves:

Arizona Cardinals

Buffalo Bills

  • Signed: FB Sam Rogers
  • Waived/Injured: FB Zach Olstad

Carolina Panthers

Dallas Cowboys

  • Signed: WR Dres Anderson
  • Released: DE Joby Saint Fleur

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Latest On LeSean McCoy

Bills running back LeSean McCoy has been named in a lawsuit filed by his ex-girlfriend, reports WKBW.com. On Friday, Delicia Cordon filed a personal injury lawsuit against the veteran and his former University of Pittsburgh teammate, Tamarcus Porter. The lawsuit stems from a July home-invasion incident in which Cordon was injured and robbed.

Cordon has continually pointed the finger at McCoy, claiming the 30-year-old was somehow responsible for the robbery (the running back has consistently denied any wrongdoing). While a suspect hasn’t been named in the criminal investigation, the lawsuit argues that McCoy should be held responsible for the injuries.

As ESPN’s Mike Rodak explains, the suit says McCoy “breached his duty to use ordinary care to protect Plaintiff from dangerous activities being conducted at the Residence” by changing and withholding the security codes to the house. The lawsuit also details arguments between the two, with Cordon accusing the running back of “beating his dog and beating his son frequently, as well as other issues.”

As Rodak writes, the lawsuit does not specifically accuse McCoy or Porter “of conducting or ordering the attack.” However, since Porter told police that he had access to a live feed of the home’s security cameras, the suit is arguing that the pair had “actual and constructive knowledge of criminal activity existing on the property on July 10, 2018.”

Last month, the NFL said they were still reviewing the matter. McCoy reported to Bills camp in late July.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.