Buffalo Bills Free Agency Position Preview: Linebacker

Buffalo Bills, Tremaine Edmunds (Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports)
Buffalo Bills, Tremaine Edmunds (Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports) /

As the Buffalo Bills head toward 2023 NFL free agency, things are going to be real tough to figure out.

Luckily, that’s not up to the fans. Brandon Beane has a lot of work to do when it comes to getting his team under the salary cap. Not only that, but he’ll have to get further under the cap if he is going to bring back one or two of Buffalo’s top free agents.

One of those free agents happens to be safety Jordan Poyer, who is getting up there in age. The other one? Well, we’ll get to him in just a minute.

Let’s take a look at the state of Buffalo’s linebacker position as we head into free agency in just a couple of weeks.

Linebacker is one of the positions to watch for the Buffalo Bills in free agency next month

Bills linebackers under contract for 2023:

Matt Milano

Terrel Bernard

Baylon Spector

There’s not much to be said, here, as the star of the group is of course Matt Milano. He’ll continue to anchor this defense going forward and is worth every penny the Bills are paying him.

Bills free agent linebackers for 2023:

Tremaine Edmunds

A.J. Klein

Tyrel Dodson

Tyler Matakevich

This is the real story, folks. What do the Bills decide to do with one of their defensive leaders in linebacker Tremaine Edmunds? That is the real question. General manager Brandon Beane has his work cut out for him as far as the cap goes.

One option for Buffalo is to give Edmunds the franchise tag, which is definitely a possibility. However, the cap number for a linebacker on the franchise tag this year is roughly $20 million, and that just so happens to be the amount Buffalo is actually over the cap going into free agency.

Top available free agent linebackers in 2023:

Bobby Wagner

Zach Cunningham

Deion Jones

Lavonte David

Devin Bush

Denzel Perryman

Cory Littleton

TJ Edwards

This year’s linebacker group is fairly deep in free agency. The above names are mostly inside linebackers, too, just for the sake of Buffalo possibly needing to replace Edmunds.

One of the best fits overall has to be Bobby Wagner, who moved on from the Los Angeles Rams and is looking to simply win at this point. Wagner might decide to take a discount for a team like the Bills, who have the makings of a Super Bowl contender. Although, if he does want what he’s worth, then the Bills would have a hard time affording him.

Best-case scenario for this defense is that Beane figures out a way to extend Edmunds or give him the franchise tag. It might be in team’s best interest to extend Edmunds and give him more of a backloaded deal. But, we’ll see what happens.

Next. Bills: Tremaine Edmunds a franchise tag candidate. dark