One of the three restricted free agents Buffalo did not tender is now off the market. Defensive tackle Stefan Charles has signed a one-year deal with the Detroit Lions, NFL Network reported Thursday night.
The 6-foot-5, 323-pound Charles has spent the last three years in Buffalo, totaling 48 tackles (29 solo) with five sacks and two forced fumbles. Charles, an Oshawa, Ont., native, played 21 percent of the snaps in a rotational role last year. Without much salary-cap space to work with, the Bills decided to place the low tender on defensive tackle Corbin Bryant, who played 59 percent of the snaps, instead of Charles.
So far, no reports of teams making a run at Bryant have surfaced. He finished with a career-high 45 tackles last season, supplanting the injured Kyle Williams up front.
While Rex Ryan will be leaning on most of the same veterans in 2016 as he did in 2015, it's clear Buffalo will also need rookies to step into roles immediately. Sure, some exits may be deemed addition by subtraction, but end Mario Williams (Miami), inside linebacker Nigel Bradham (Philadelphia), cornerback Leodis McKelvin (Philadelphia), cornerback Ron Brooks (Philadelphia) and Charles (Detroit) must all be replaced.
Further, safety Bacarri Rambo, inside linebacker Ty Powell and end Alex Carrington are all unrestricted free agents.
After Richie Incognito's new deal, the Bills will have about $4.5 million to work with under the salary cap, money they'll also need in signing draft picks next month.