LeSean McCoy, Tyrod Taylor, and the Buffalo Bills came up just short in their efforts. After the two Bills players publicly tried to recruit wide receiver Jeremy Maclin, the free agent officially made his decision today.
Maclin has elected to become a member of the Baltimore Ravens. According to multiple reports, Maclin has signed a two-year deal with the Ravens.
The wide receiver was deciding over the weekend between the Bills and the Ravens -- the only two teams he made a free agent visit with.
Maclin, 29, was surprisingly released by the Chiefs a little over a week ago. He served as their number-one receiver each of the last two seasons.
Joe B's Take
The Bills tried to secure a more established starting receiver to play with Sammy Watkins for the upcoming season but ultimately fell short in their bid for Jeremy Maclin.
It was a two-year deal, and I've previously stated that I'd only be comfortable with giving him a one-year deal given his age and what the Bills current roster looks like.
Either way, now the Bills will likely have to depend on one of Zay Jones, Andre Holmes, or Philly Brown to be the secondary wideout in the offense -- which isn't exactly comforting for fans because one is a rookie, and the other two fell way behind on their previous teams' depth charts.
Now, there still is an opportunity out there with an established starter like Eric Decker, but he has yet to be released by the New York Jets. The other problem: Decker represents the last starting-caliber player likely to be available before the start of training camps in July, so the competition for him could be quite fierce.
But, there's also this to consider with the Bills: might this have been a good thing for them?
If their goal is to compete for the playoffs this season, they likely aren't pleased with the result of the Maclin signing. But, with the roster being as thin as it is in several places -- where a single injury could put them at a tremendous disadvantage -- perhaps taking their lumps without paying someone like Maclin, and keeping that cap room to roll over for next year, isn't the worst thing that could happen to them.
The Bills, while trying to remain competitive, are also in the process of overhauling the roster to better suit what general manager Brandon Beane and head coach Sean McDermott is looking to build.
So while, yes, the Maclin news hurts for the short-term, it's not a backbreaker when considering the long-term appeal. Besides, the Bills still have Sammy Watkins, who when healthy, is a bonafide number-one receiver in the NFL.