To cap a week that saw the Bills decide to retain the services of Stevie Johnson, Scott Chandler, and Ruvell Martin, the team made one more move today, signing veteran linebacker Kirk Morrison to a tw0-year contract extension.
Morrison announced the move himself over his Twitter feed, writing:
“I’m happy to announce on this Friday that I re-signed with the Buffalo Bills. Couldn’t be more excited to be coming back.”
Morrison came to Buffalo late in the preseason in 2010, as the Bills signed him for insurance purposes after Reggie Torbor went down for the year. Morrison hadn’t played much in the 3-4, and by the time he adjusted Nick Barnett and Kelvin Sheppard were pretty well entrenched as the inside linebackers. As a result Morrison didn’t see a lot of defensive action last season, recording just seven tackles and one sack in 14 games.
However with the Bills’ switch back to the 4-3 (and a glaring hole at strongside linebacker), Morrison could very well find himself starting next to Barnett and Sheppard in 2012. And it’s not like Morrison can’t play: He has started 95 games in the NFL for the Raiders and Jaguars, totaling 771 tackles, 6.0 sacks, seven interceptions and 18 passes defensed.
In any case, this was another nice signing by the Bills. Morrison’s not the fastest guy in the world and is certainly no superstar, but he’s a solid guy who be good against the run. Plus the veteran combo of Morrison and Barnett will give the young middle linebacker Sheppard plenty of support to lean on. The Bills will likely look to add Morrison’s replacement via the draft, but Morrison is a fine stopgap for now.
Wow, this team is continuing to come together. If the Bills can pull off a decent draft and maybe bring in a name free agent or two, there’s going to be a lot of buzz about this team heading into training camp.