With Sammy Watkins coming off a successful season, the Buffalo Bills signed Percy Harvin to be the second part of a one-two punch for the quarterback. Harvin's NFL history was spotty, but the talent was there giving Buffalo confidence that a change scenery and offensive help would bring the best out of the receiver. That did not happen as hip and knee injuries took over and Harvin was barely seen on the field. Now the team is admitting something might have to change.
The Bills must make a decision on Harvin the coming weeks. The team has the ability to void out the final two years of his contract on February 12. That means the team would eat $1 million in 2016 and 2017, but it would free up space to allow them to sign someone who can stay healthy and actually play. Team director of player personnel Jim Monos told ESPN.com that a lot was expected of Harvin and he really is not sure exactly what went wrong with the receiver, but he might not be back next season.
"Percy Harvin was supposed to be a big help for us and we're still not sure what's going on," Monos, said, via WGR-AM on Tuesday, per ESPN.com's Mike Rodak. "He's got to make some decisions here coming up. We need to get somebody opposite of (wideout) Sammy (Watkins) to be a real threat to that defense. I think that's a big key for our offense, to take one more step."
Head coach Rex Ryan told the Buffalo News that he believed Harvin still wanted to play football. Retirement rumors surfaced around the receiver leaving many to believe injuries might cause him to call it quits. Even if Harvin wanted to continue playing, the chances it happens with the Bills are slim to none. Instead, the team will likely search for his replacement either in the draft or free agency.
The Bills have Watkins as their No.1. That is not a question. Robert Woods has yet to show he can be a No.2. Woods has one year remaining on his contract with a cap hit that exceeds just over $1 million. He will stay put along with Charles Clay and Chris Hogan who showed some promise. The Bills could look to free agency for help. Travis Benjamin, Rishard Matthews and Jermaine Kearse are all available for the taking once the market opens up. They are good options, but not great enough to demand a high-priced contract which could entice the Bills to select one.
The draft could be a solid option as well. The Bills might not make a move for a receiver until a middle round in the draft. Sterling Shepart out of Oklahoma, Josh Doctson from TCU and Will Fuller from Notre Dame could all be around when the Bills made a move.