2011 NFL Predictions: Should the Buffalo Bills Release Terrence McGee?

Robert QuinnCorrespondent ISeptember 3, 2011

DENVER, CO - AUGUST 20:  Cornerback Terrence McGee #24 of the Buffalo Bills in action against the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on August 20, 2011 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)
Justin Edmonds/Getty Images

Yesterday there were rumors floating around the Internet that the Buffalo Bills were intending on releasing veteran cornerback Terrence McGee. Those rumors turned out to be false; however, would releasing the nine-year veteran be a good idea?

The Bills are looking to revamp their roster, with just 19 players remaining from the Dick Jauron era, since general manager Buddy Nix and head coach Chan Gailey took over the reins of the franchise. 

McGee has been a solid starting cornerback for his eight years with the Bills, despite missing 19 of a possible 128 games due to injuries. 

Last year, he was sidelined most of the year, as a nerve injury in his knee continued to nag him throughout the season, and he hasn't really made an impact since 2008. 

McGee is 30 years old, and with the re-signing of fellow cornerback Drayton Florence, combined with the selection of Aaron Williams in the second round of the 2011 NFL Draft, does he become expendable?

The former Northwestern State product has made 484 tackles, three sacks, forced three fumbles, while picking off 17 passes and deflecting another 94 in his career. Furthermore, he has had four seasons of gaining at least 1,000 yards on kick returns.

He is by far the most consistent cornerback on the roster when healthy, but it could be the time for the youngsters to step up. Another question that arises is whether he deserves the $3.2 million he is owed his season, followed by the $3.6 million in 2012 and the $4.6 million owed in 2013. For a 30-year-old on the downside of his career, that money could be used elsewhere for a team that doesn't necessarily have a realistic shot at making the playoffs in the next two to three seasons. 

Leodis McKelvin, a former first round draft pick, still hasn't lived up to his potential, but if he were to be inserted into a full-time starting role, it's possible that he could prosper and prove his worth as a first round-caliber corner.

Drayton Florence is still capable of locking down receivers, and Williams has looked solid in training camp and preseason, giving some faith to trust him in nickel and dime packages.

The only real issue is who will the fourth and fifth cornerbacks will be. Unless Nix likes one of the corners expected to be released this week, Reggie Corner and seventh round draft pick Justin Rogers are the only remaining corners on the roster.