Jairus Byrd signs Bills’ franchise tender

Jairus Byrd was tagged with the Buffalo Bills franchise tag on March 1, and on Tuesday the Pro Bowl free safety signed his franchise tender and will be playing for the Bills in 2013.

The 26-year-old will make $6.9 million this season, according to the team site, and will rejoin the Bills on Thursday, after training camp has ended, on a scheduled day off for players. After this season, the Bills and Byrd will be able to work on a long-term deal for their Pro-Bowl free safety.

According to ESPN, it is still unknown if Byrd will play in the Bills third preseason game, against the Washington Redskins, on Saturday.

Whenever he does return he will have to take a crash course on the Bills new defense that new defensive coordinator Mike Pettine has planned for the Bills this season. The Bills, however, remain confident that Byrd, who had five interceptions and four forced fumbles last season, will be able to quickly adapt to the schemes.

“It’s a new system, and it’s an intricate system,” Buffalo Bills GM Doug Whaley said. “Safeties do make a lot of calls, so he’s missed that. (He’s missed) a lot of the tempo of practice, so he’s going to have some ground to make up, but he’s a professional. I know he’ll come in here ready to work and try to contribute as soon as possible.”

“When he gets in, we’ll just put the playbook in front of him and hopefully he’s in shape and we just go from there.”

Categories: Football