The Buffalo Bills' 2021-22 season ended in the Divisional Round of the NFL Playoffs, but that's not representative of where this team stands in the league's hierarchy. It felt like the real Super Bowl was played in late January, as the Bills and Kansas City Chiefs are clearly the two best teams in football.
The budding rivalry between Josh Allen and Patrick Mahomes is turning into this generation's Manning vs. Brady, but Mahomes has had Buffalo's number so far. If the Bills want to get over that Mahomes-sized bump next year, this front office will need to make some offseason upgrades.
Here are three free agents the Bills should target this offseason to maximize Josh Allen.
Buffalo Bills Offseason Moves
3. Sign Cordarrelle Patterson, RB/WR, Atlanta Falcons
You'll notice a running theme with each of these selections. Buffalo is not exactly flush with cap space, so the front office will need to target players that might be willing to take discounted, cheap deals. Even after a career year, it's not hard to see Cordarrelle Patterson falling into that category. Patterson's versatility oddly works against him, as most teams don't seem to know what to do with RB/WR hybrid. If his market isn't as robust as he'd hope, taking a one-year deal in Buffalo would be an excellent move for both sides. Patterson could split RB duties with Devin Singletary while serving as Buffalo's primary pass-catching RB. The 30-year-old is one of the NFL's most dynamic athletes and he'd unlock this offense in a way that few others could. Put the Swiss Army Knife in the backfield behind Allen and the Bills would have limitless ways of beating you on every play. If he's willing to take a cheap deal to maximize his future value and contend for a Super Bowl, this signing would be an absolute home run.
2. Sign JuJu Smith-Schuster, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers
Buffalo is the perfect landing spot for JuJu Smith-Schuster. After a 1,400-yard breakout campaign in 2018, he has failed to record even 850 yards in any of the last three seasons and missed most of 2021 due to injuries. Signing with Buffalo would put him in the best situation he's been in since 2018, giving the 25-year-old a great shot at a huge deal next year. Part of the reason JuJu was so effective in 2018 was that a prime Antonio Brown drew most of the defensive attention. Playing alongside Stefon Diggs would give JuJu the same advantage. Teaming up with Allen would also give him the best QB play he's had since 2018. That's important too, as JuJu's production not-so-coincidentally fell off a cliff after Ben Roethlisberger's elbow injury in 2019. If he's willing to bet on himself, JuJu could salvage his reputation by stepping in for Emmanuel Sanders (or Cole Beasley) in 2022.
1. Sign Andrew Norwell, OG, Jacksonville Jaguars
Andrew Norwell signed a massive five-year, $66 million deal back in 2018. While it's unfair to label that signing a bust, Norwell hasn't completely lived up to the price tag, either. But his struggles tend to come as a run blocker. Norwell has received a pass-blocking grade of at least 73.5 from PFF in each of the last four seasons, though he's been below 64.0 as a run blocker in each of those years. That could make him a really intriguing option for Buffalo. The Bills are traditionally one of the most pass-heavy teams in football, allowing Norwell to play to his strengths. And it's not like he's terrible in the run game or anything. He'd be a big-time upgrade over the likes of Cody Ford and Ike Boettger and would solidify the interior of this OL. It's not hard to envision Norwell wanting to play for a winner like Buffalo after spending the last four seasons with the Jacksonville Jaguars. If that's enough to bring down his asking price, a Norwell-to-Buffalo signing could be one of the steals of the offseason.
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Max Staley is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Max Staley also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username mstaley1212. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.