2011 NFL Free Agency: Paul Posluszny and 5 Players the Bills Must Re-Sign
As talks concerning the NFL Lockout resume, questions regarding the process of NFL Free Agency still remain. The Buffalo Bills have several key players including Paul Posluszny, Donte Whitner and Drayton Florence all slated to become unrestricted free agents pending the agreement of a new Collective Bargaining Agreement.
It's assumed that all players who have four or more accrued seasons with their current team will become unrestricted free agents. Below is a list of Buffalo Bills set to become unrestricted free agents, and the slideshow will overview the five that need to be signed.
OT Mansfield Wrotto, DT/DE John McCargo, ILB Paul Posluszny, ILB Keith Ellison, CB Ashton Youboty, CB Drayton Florence, ILB Akin Ayodele, S Donte Whitner, S George Wilson
CB Drayton Florence
Drayton Florence is a veteran corner who saw a lot of starting reps this past season at corner due to injuries to Terrence McGee, as well as shoddy play by Leodis McKelvin.
The Buffalo Bills did use a second round pick on cornerback Aaron Williams out of the University of Texas, however it's unclear whether the coaching staff sees him as a safety or a traditional corner.
Furthermore, as reported in www.BuffaloSportsDaily.com, cornerback Ashton Youboty sold his home in Buffalo, after signing a one-year deal as a restricted free agent last year, meaning all signs are pointing to him not returning.
Florence can be a streaky player, but he did record three interceptions, while forcing a fumble and recording 58 tackles.
S George Wilson
Buffalo Bills safety George Wilson may not be known league-wide, but he is well known in the Buffalo community. He serves as a defensive captain and can be counted on to make plays.
With fellow safety Donte Whitner not expected to return, Wilson climbs close to being one of the top priorities to resign.
In case you forgot, while Donte Whitner missed several games due to injury, Wilson filled in and played nicely, racking up over 100 tackles and picking off four passes.
ILB Paul Posluszny
Bills inside backer Paul Posluszny is another fan favorite that the city of Buffalo would hate to lose. The four year veteran out of Penn State has been productive when healthy and has consistently been leading the team in tackles year in and year out.
To me, "Poz" should be number one on General Manager Buddy Nix's list to resign as soon as the lockout ends.
He made the tough transition to the 3-4 defense after primarily playing in a Cover 2, zone defense under former head coach Dick Jauron and racked up over 150 tackles.
Additionally, the lack of depth at the inside linebacker would leave an aging Akin Ayodele with a rookie in Kelvin Sheppard to stop opposing defenses from running the ball down their throat.
DT/DE John McCargo
John McCargo is only on this list as an issue for depth. He appeared in just one game last season, recording one tackle.
However, the former first round pick is still just 27 years old, and his 6'2" 307 pound frame may be better suited for playing defensive end in the 3-4 front.
McCargo really only had one semi-productive season in 2007 in which he appeared in all 16 games, while recording 29 tackles and 2.5 sacks.
ILB Akin Ayodele
Another depth signing, linebacker Akin Ayodele had a productive 2010-2011 campaign, recording 106 tackles and forcing two fumbles.
However, at 31 years of age he can be a veteran voice in the locker room to the plethora of youth at the linebacker position. Ayodele is a hard worker, and can still be counted on to make plays when need be.
While he isn't exactly a player that jumps off the page, he continues to be consistent in his play and is solid in his run support.