Buffalo Bills: Former safety named to PFF All-Era Team
The Buffalo Bills had a former safety named to Pro Football Focus’ All-Era team.
The safety position is one that the Buffalo Bills have had a lot of talent at over the past few seasons with players like Micah Hyde, Jordan Poyer, Aaron Williams but the one that stands out the most is Jairus Byrd.
The Bills drafted Byrd in the second round of the 2009 NFL Draft and converted the college college corner to safety almost immediately. This ended up being a tremendous move as Byrd was a three time Pro-Bowler while with the Bills from 2009 to 2013.
However, the 2012 season is the one that stands out the most and his performance that year helped him make Pro Football Focus’ All-Era team. This list looks at the top performances at every position over the 14 years that PFF has been handing out grades.
"Safety: Jairus Byrd, Buffalo Bills (2012) — 93.2The former Bills star was simply sensational on the backend of his team’s defense in 2012, grading above 90.0 in three of his games on the year. His 94.7 coverage grade is still tied for the best grade ever recorded by a safety (see below), in large part due to his six combined pass breakups and interceptions and 24 total defensive stops."
This 2012 season was Byrd’s final year on his rookie contract and was in line for a big payday because of his performance. He finished the 2012 season with 76 total tackles, five interceptions, six passes defended and four forced fumbles. However, the Bills were not able to come to an agreement on a long-term deal and placed the franchise tag on the former Pro Bowl safety.
He eventually signed the franchise tag and did end up playing out the 2013 season on the franchise tag and nearly duplicated the previous year’s performance with 48 total tackles, four interceptions and six passes defended.
Unfortunately, this would be Byrd’s last year in a Bills’ uniform. He would go on and sign a six-year deal with the New Orleans Saints in free agency. He played three seasons in New Orleans before he was released and last played for the Carolina Panthers in 2017.