GM Buddy Nix; PM Practice
August 20, 2012
Opening statement in regards to releasing DE Shawne Merriman:
Let me say this to start with, I am sure the questions are why and why now?
Why is, Shawne was battling for the fourth defensive end spot. We have three guys there that we feel good about. We have a couple of young guys. That is the reason we made the move. The why now is a couple of thing - one, we want to give these two young guys more reps in practice and more playing time in these last two games; Two - we want to give Shawne a chance to get a job. Us doing it earlier gives Shawne a better chance to get picked up and locked on to somebody.
I think he struggled a little. But first off, let me say this—he can play. He did everything. He has been healthy since OTAs. He had not missed anything. He is very attentive in meetings. He has worked hard at practice and he has played, in spots, really well during the games. He is a hard worker; he has done everything he could do. We think we have been patient but there comes a point where we felt like we needed to move on and look down the road. These young guys will get a shot.
On if he can ever get back to his Pro Bowl form:
Maybe he can. I do not think any of us know that. I think the main thing is that time is a factor with us. We need to move on and we need to look past this week. We need to look further down the road. So again we have two good guys that are young and a couple of them that fit the scheme.
On who the young guys are:
I would rather not name them. We have a bunch of them out there working.
On if it was tough on a personal level to cut Merriman:
This is a tough time of year for us anyways. It was tough with Shawne, but it is tough with all of them. You shatter a guy's dreams at times. That is not easy.
On if Merriman's health was a factor:
That did not enter into it. The only thing he had was a little fatigue and he needed to rest. It was not anything injury-wise.
On what the move says about the team's expectations and the younger guys:
I do not know. I hope it makes them work harder.
On the chance that Merriman does revert to Pro Bowl form:
All of that is speculation. We have to go on what we see and we have to try and make the best decision for the Bills.
On if it was a matter of running out of patience:
I do not think so. I think I said what it was. And that is what it is.
On if there was an effort to trade Merriman: