Hughes is Staying in Buffalo

He’s baaaaaack! After a long few months since the regular season ended in the NFL, we finally have the answer to whether Jerry Hughes will be back next season. Hughes reportedly agreed to a 5 year, $45 million deal.

Photo Courtesy: Kevin Hoffman/USA Today

Photo Courtesy: Kevin Hoffman/USA Today

Hughes originally came to Buffalo in a trade involving linebacker Kelvin Sheppard. Hughes played his college football at TCU and was a first round pick to the Indianapolis Colts. He was considered a “bust” until playing for the Bills. In his last two seasons here, he’s racked up 10 sacks in both years.

I was not the biggest fan of bringing back Hughes if the contract involved double digit numbers each year. Jerry was quoted saying “I’ve never heard of a hometown discount in the business world.” We managed to keep Hughes without doing so. He is guaranteed $20 million over the contract. Bills GM Doug Whaley and owners Terry and Kim Pegula have done a great job showing they will take care of their players. Free agents pay attention to this type of thing. Buffalo has never been seen as a nice landing spot for free agents, unless it involved a ton of money.  Mario Williams seemed to start the trend of free agents coming to Buffalo when he signed his $100 million contract, which also gave him the most guaranteed money for a defensive player at the time. 

Now that the deal is done, I am pretty excited to see Hughes back. A signature play that stood out for me in 2014, happened at home against the Cleveland Browns. It was a close game halfway through the third quarter. Buffalo was leading 7-3, when running back Terrance West ran a sweep play to the left side. It looked like the play was over and he was tackled by the sideline, until I saw #55 for the Bills running back the other way with the football. There was a flag down and everyone became confused and quiet at Ralph Wilson Stadium. The flag was an offensive penalty, which led to the refs declaring a Bills touchdown. Jerry Hughes not only stripped the football out of West's hands, but he also scored a touchdown on the play. There's no doubt the man is a game changer. The Ralph went crazy and the Bills ended up winning 26-10. 

I can assure you that Rex Ryan is a happy guy nowadays. 

That play can be seen here: NFL.com