BBD Assistant Editor: Ryan Talbot
The Buffalo Bills have one talented safety hitting the free agent market, but they ensured Wednesday that their other starter at the position won’t be leaving anytime soon.
The Bills announced Wednesday that Aaron Williams has signed a four-year contract extension with the team.
S Aaron Williams’ deal with the Bills: four years, $26 million, with another $1.25 million in incentives, source tells @FOXSports1
— Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo) March 5, 2014
Buffalo had been working on an extension with Williams since the end of the regular season, according to Chris Brown of BuffaloBills.com.
“Aaron Williams is a versatile player who has grown into a key playmaker for our defense in recent years,” Bills general manager Doug Whaley said in a press release. “He had an extremely productive season for our defense in 2013. Aaron is the type of young, core player we targeted early in the process to retain for years to come and this will be our philosophy moving forward. By building on his improved play in 2013, we expect Aaron to continue to grow into a key contributor for the Bills organization.”
After struggling at cornerback in his first two seasons with the Bills, Williams moved to safety in 2013 and thrived. He finished the 2013 season with 82 total tackles, one forced fumble and four interceptions.
Williams will be signed for the next five seasons, as his extension kicks in for the 2015 season.
While Byrd could sign elsewhere, the Bills’ other two starters in the secondary, cornerbacks Stephon Gilmore and Leodis McKelvin, are both signed through 2015.
It’s not likely a coincidence that Williams’ contract extension comes two days after the team decided not to use the franchise tag on Byrd, but according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, Williams’ deal doesn’t mean the team has closed the book on signing their other safety.
Spoke to a #Bills source, on if they could sign Jairus Byrd after Aaron Williams’s huge extension: “They’re completely independent” So, yes
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 5, 2014