by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com (4/25/14) The Bills exercised the fifth-year option on defensive tackle Marcell Dareus, reports ESPN's Adam Schefter. Dareus has not missed a game in his three-year career and had 71 tackles, seven sacks, three pass breakups and a forced fumble last season.
Brandon Spikes signs one-year contract with Bills
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com (3/14/14) Former Patriots linebacker Brandon Spikes will be staying put in the AFC East. The 26-year-old signed a one-year, $3.25 million deal with the Bills, according to the Associated Press.
Spikes had 86 tackles with the Patriots in 2013.
Bills add Keith Rivers
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com (3/12/14) Free agent linebacker Keith Rivers won't have to move far to get to his new home, as the former Giant signed a two-year contract with the Bills Wednesday, according to The Buffalo News. The deal will pay Rivers $5 million over two years, with half of the money guaranteed.
Rivers played in all 16 games for the first time in his career a year ago, but struggled to make much of an impact. He finished with 45 tackles and one sack in his second season with the Giants.
Jairus Byrd could stay in Buffalo, look at Cleveland
by Jamey Eisenberg | Senior Fantasy Writer (2/21/14) Bills safety Jairus Byrd is a free agent this offseason, and he has two scenarios he could explore for his next team.
The first, according to the Buffalo News, is returning to the Bills, possibly under the franchise tag for the second consecutive year. That's something Bills general manager Doug Whaley is mulling over.
"In that situation, you're going to use every option open," Whaley said. "We don't want to put ourselves in a corner, and I don't want to say to you guys, 'We're going to do this,' and then something changes and we don't something different. Then you guys look at me different when you ask me a question. We as an organization, again, we're going to leave every option open for Jairus because we would like him back."
Byrd's tag for this year would be $8.299 million. Many analysts believe that's too much money for a safety.
The other scenario for Byrd is signing in Cleveland and being reunited with former defensive coordinator Mike Pettine, who is now the Browns head coach. NFL Network reports there be a possible reunion if Byrd is set free.
Russ Brandon: Bills optimistic they can extend Jairus Byrd
by Marty Gitlin | CBSSports.com (1/29/14) Bills president Russ Brandon said the contract stalemate with Bills Pro Bowl safety Jairus Byrd last offseason does not preclude the team from signing him to a long-term contract this year.
"It's a process and there's no carryover," Brandon told The Associated Press. "You start over again and you try to get something done. We just weren't able to come up with a solution that worked for both parties, so you reset it and start again." Brandon added that there are no hard feelings between the team and Byrd or agent Eugene Parker.
Byrd did not return to the Pro Bowl after hurting his back in the first quarter.
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The Bills DST was a solid option in 2013, and hopefully they can continue to play at a high level this year. The unit suffered some key losses with safety Jairus Byrd going to New Orleans and defensive coordinator Mike Pettine becoming the head coach in Cleveland. But the Bills added Brandon Spikes, Keith Rivers and rookie Preston Brown at linebacker, and hopefully Kiko Alonso, Mario Williams, Marcell Dareus and Stephon Gilmore will continue to shine for new coordinator Jim Schwartz. The Bills DST finished No. 8 in Fantasy points in a standard league last season with 23 interceptions, 56 sacks, six fumble recoveries and three touchdowns. The interceptions and sacks were second in the NFL behind Seattle and Carolina, respectively. We consider the Bills a potential Top 12 option heading into the season, and they are worth drafting with a late-round pick. If the Bills don't get drafted then keep an eye on them as a quality bye-week replacement during the year.