The Buffalo Bills have lost some depth along the defensive line with the departure of Shaq Lawson in free agency.
The 25-year-old was expecting a decent pay rise after what could be considered a career year in Upstate New York, helping the team to reach the playoffs for the second time in three years.
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Per NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport, Lawson’s new deal with the Bills’ AFC East rivals will pay him $30 million across three years, though the exact annual break down has not yet been officially announced.
In his last year with the Bills, Lawson registered a career-high 6.5 sacks despite not starting in any of the 16 regular-season games he featured in.
As well as his 6.5 sacks, Lawson had 18 total hits on opposing quarterbacks, another career-high for the former first-round pick out of Clemson.
The writing was on the wall for Lawson’s future in Buffalo when the team declined his fifth-year option, which would have paid him just over $9 million for one year.
Now, he will earn in the region of $10 million a season in South Florida, facing up against his former teammates twice a year with a point to prove moving forward.
While it is disappointing to see the Bills lose the kind of production that Lawson has shown he is capable of, the team wasn’t willing to give him the money he was hoping for.
This leaves the Bills with an opportunity to address the position in the draft, or target other options in free agency.
With Lawson and Lorenzo Alexander both no longer on the roster, general manager Brandon Beane will need to address bolstering the team’s defence.
What do you think though Bills Mafia? Are you disappointed to see Lawson leave? Are you pleased the team didn’t over pay to keep him around? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!