With the opening of free agency just a week away the Bills have a couple of starting caliber players that are due to hit the market in linebacker Angelo Crowell and cornerback Jabari Greer. Buffalo has made it clear to both players what they think of their talents.
Greer would appear to be the greater priority in light of the fact that he had a productive season, despite missing six games with a sprained MCL, and he's entering a free agent market that's thin for cornerbacks entering the prime of their career.
"I think Jabari knows how we feel about him," said Bills COO Russ Brandon. "We've been in constant communication with his representatives as well. We'd love to have Jabari back in the mix."
But that would certainly come at a price. Whether Greer can command the kind of contract on that Colts cornerback Kelvin Hayden signed earlier this week to remain in Indianapolis (5-$43.5M) is unclear, but it's no secret that quality starting cornerbacks are expensive.
Brandon, however, made it sound as though the Bills will make their best pitch to convince Greer that they respect his game and want him back on their roster.
"We'll do everything within our power to try to have him in the mix and see how it plays out," said Brandon. "He certainly knows our feelings about him."
The situation is a little trickier with Angelo Crowell. Coming off a serious knee injury that required surgery, the Crowell camp is circulating videotape of his most recent on field workout to show NFL teams how far he's come post surgery.
But that's likely to be a tough sell with a decent crop of healthy free agent linebacker talent set to hit the market. While Brandon didn't indicate there was a great sense of urgency to re-sign Crowell, he reiterated that they would still have an interest in their former third-round draft pick.
"Obviously it was disappointing that he was injured prior to the season," said Brandon. "He was an integral part of what we were trying to do and we'll see how it all comes out and how the free agency plan works out for us and for him."
It sounds as if the Bills might play the wait and see game, to see if Crowell garners any interest on the free agent market. In all likelihood Crowell will have to settle for a "prove it" type contract where he signs a one-year deal and proves with his play that he cannot only stay healthy, but contribute in a way that he has in the past when he was a 100 tackle performer for Buffalo.
"I had a long conversation with Cro at the postseason physical and he had some talks with some other people within the organization and we assured him that the door is never shut," said Brandon. "We're going to have continual dialogue with his representatives and we'll just see how it plays out."