Bills re-sign Easley and land free-agent quarterback Taylor
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) — The Buffalo Bills were so busy making high-profile splashes in free agency, Marcus Easley began to worry if they still had room to re-sign him.
“The anxiety was definitely building up,” Easley said. “Just waiting on my time.”
That time came Thursday, when the receiver and special teams mainstay signed a four-year contract to remain in Buffalo.
“This has been home for me the last five years, and I really didn’t want to change,” Easley said. “Knowing the direction that the team is going, why not want to be part of that?”
And the Bills weren’t done addressing secondary needs on Thursday after spending the previous few days adding running back LeSean McCoy, fullback Jerome Felton and re-signing defensive end Jerry Hughes.
Buffalo also signed free-agent quarterback Tyrod Taylor to a two-year contract. Taylor, who spent the previous four seasons backing up Joe Flacco in Baltimore, joins newly acquired journeyman Matt Cassel to compete with EJ Manuel for the starting job.
“Looking across the board going into free agency, this was a good opportunity to compete,” Taylor said. “That’s the one thing I’ve wanted to do. I’m looking forward to it.”
Taylor is a 2011 sixth-round draft pick, who has completed 19 of 35 passes for 199 yards with no touchdowns and two interceptions in 14 appearances with the Ravens. He started more than three years at Virginia Tech and was named the ACC Player of the Year in 2010, when he went 188 of 315 for 2,743 yards passing and 24 touchdowns.
Taylor is also known for his mobility. He had 501 carries for 2,196 yards and 23 touchdowns in college.
When new Bills coach Rex Ryan was at his previous job coaching the New York Jets, he expressed interest in acquiring Taylor.
Easley was Buffalo’s fourth-round pick in the 2010 draft, but missed his first two seasons because of injuries.
He made his NFL debut in 2012 after being cut and re-signed by the Bills. Easley finally found his niche as a special teams regular over the past two seasons, during which he’s been credited with 34 tackles.
“It was definitely quite a journey,” Easley said, referring to his career path. “After getting cut, I was pretty much at rock bottom and it’s been a hard climb up to the top ever since. This day kind of seemed unimaginable.”