With the Buffalo Bills and safety Jairus Byrd failing to bridge their differences on a long-term deal, the team is open to dealing the player that received their franchise tag before this season, league sources said.
Getting back a draft pick for a player likely to walk away from Buffalo after this season would be considered a victory, and the skids were greased further this week when two trades were completed with teams picking up much of a player’s contract to facilitate a deal.
The Jacksonville Jaguars agreed to pay the majority of offensive tackle Eugene Monroe‘s contract when they traded him to the Baltimore Ravens, and the Arizona Cardinals did the same with offensive tackle Levi Brown when they traded him to the Pittsburgh Steelers, setting the precedent for a deal.
Byrd hasn’t appeared in a game yet this season for the Bills. He has plantar fasciitis, a foot condition, and has said he wants to be fully healthy before returning to the field.
He said he was ready to play last Thursday when the Bills faced the Cleveland Browns but coach Doug Marrone decided to hold him out.
Byrd, 26, has been Buffalo’s most consistent defender in recent seasons. A second-round pick in 2009 out of Oregon, he was fourth on the team in tackles in 2012 with 76 and led the team in interceptions with five.
ESPN.com Bills reporter Mike Rodak contributed to this report.
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