Pittsford (WKBW.com) The first practice isn't until Sunday night but the Buffalo Bills stayed busy on the first Saturday of training camp. Players worked through conditioning while team officials used part of the morning to address the continued absence of Safety Jairus Byrd.
Unsatisfied with his contract situation Byrd did not report to training camp before the deadline. "We respect him as a player and as a human being", said Bills GM Doug Whaley on Saturday morning. "Hopefully he comes in and when he does we will welcome him with open arms", Whaley continued.
Byrd and the Bills were unable to negotiate a long-term extension by the July 15th deadline. As a result the next time Byrd hits the field it will be under a 1-year contract. He has yet to sign his 1-year $6.9 million dollar tender as the Bills franchise player. Whaley wouldn't comment on if the the team was willing to negotiate a deal above the franchise number. "The lines of communication are open. We will not be negotiating in the media or in the public way", said Whaley.
"Nothing new to report at this time" said Byrd's agent Eugene Parker in an email to Eyewitness Sports Director Jeff Russo on Saturday. Parker would not comment on if he's had any recent communication with the team.
Meanwhile Bills Head Coach Doug Marrone says he's ready to kick off training camp without one of his top defensive players here at St. John Fisher College "We will concentrate on the players that are here now and look forward to Jairus reporting in the future", said Marrone.