Jairus Byrd had his best years with the Buffalo Bills and a reunion could be happening soon.
The story pretty much writes itself. The Buffalo Bills draft Jairus Byrd, he dominates his rookie contract, signs a big contract with the New Orleans Saints, things don’t work out with them, Byrd’s father becomes the defensive backs coach for Buffalo and then the three parties ride off into the sunset.
Sounds like a good plan to me.
Ian Rapaport reported on Wednesday that the Saint will release Jairus Byrd just three years into his 6-year, $52 million contract — which was signed in 2014. He will be available the first day of free agency.
Byrd was drafted in the second round of the 2009 draft by the Buffalo Bills. He quickly emerged onto the scene with 9 interceptions and 11 passes defensed in his rookie season (14 games). He would go on to record 13 more interceptions and 22 passes defensed over the next four years in Buffalo.
Byrd was named to three Pro-Bowls with the Bills.
He played under the franchise tag in 2013, but the Buffalo Bills failed to reach a long-term deal and Byrd decided to hit the open market in 2014.
The Saints would sign Jairus Byrd on the first day of 2014 free agency to a monster 6-year, $54 million contract. With high expectations, Byrd simply never lived up to them. In his first season with the team, he would only play 4 games and record no interceptions. He followed that up with a 13-game season, only catching one interception.
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Last season, Jairus Byrd finally played a full season for the Saints, but he wasn’t what the team expected him to be. He would finish with 82 tackles, 2 interceptions, 3 passes defensed and 2 stuffs.
With the Saints releasing Byrd, he will become one of the more sought-after safeties this offseason. Currently, the biggest names in the market are Eric Berry, Tony Jefferson, T.J. McDonald, Barry Church and Johnathan Cyprien.
The Buffalo Bills are in desperate need of a safety this offseason — if not several safeties. Corey Graham is aging and Aaron Williams’ future is uncertain to this point. Behind them, the Bills aren’t left with much in Jonathan Dowling, Joe Powell, Phillip Thomas, Shamiel Gary and Colt Anderson.
Jairus Byrd could very well be an answer for the Buffalo Bills. His age (30 years old), injury history and lacking performance will likely bring him in at a low cost and the change of scenery could be what Byrd needs to rejuvenate his career.
Plus, he has connections with some of the new coaching staff in Buffalo. More specifically his father, Gill Byrd, was named the team’s defensive backs coach not too long ago. It could make for an epic duo in Buffalo — unlike the Ryan brothers.
Personally, if Buffalo could get Byrd at a reasonable price, I wouldn’t mind pursuing him this offseason. Looking at the depth the Bills have, they could use all the help they could get.
What at do you think of Jairus Byrd being available as a free agent this offseason? Leave your thoughts below!