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With Fitzpatrick signed, Stevie Johnson may not be next up for new deal

Kelly Jennings, Steve Johnson AP

Before the Bills worked out a long-term deal that makes quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick their quarterback of the present and future, it was believed that the Bills would turn to receiver Stevie Johnson as soon as Fitzpatrick agreed to terms, given that Johnson (like Fitzpatrick) will be a free agent after the season.

A full 48 hours after Fitzpatrick’s deal was done, the Bills have not yet renewed discussions with Johnson, per a source with knowledge of the situation.  As we previously reported, the two sides traded offers before the regular-season began, but the talks quickly reached impasse and ended.

It’s now believed that the Bills will be focusing in the short term on extending the deals of players like kicker Rian Lindell and offensive lineman Erik Pears, both of whom are in the final year of their contracts, too.

That could mean the Bills are willing to use the franchise tag on Johnson, which would pay him in the range of $10 million for 2012.  Given that he entered the league as a seventh-rounder and that he’s making only $1.2 million this year, he probably wouldn’t complain about that, if that’s what happens.

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14 Responses to “With Fitzpatrick signed, Stevie Johnson may not be next up for new deal”
  1. tilllman40 says: Oct 30, 2011 10:39 AM

    Sign him and Freddy , no steps back

  2. 1captain1 says: Oct 30, 2011 10:48 AM

    Blah blah blah…

    WE’VE NOT EVEN GOTTEN PAST F’ing MID F’ing SEASON YET…

    Enough with the contract BS!

    Play Ball!!!!!

  3. clayjayhawk says: Oct 30, 2011 10:53 AM

    fred jackson HELLO

  4. vegasbillzfan42 says: Oct 30, 2011 10:53 AM

    Don’t be fools Buffalo. Get Stevie locked up too. Fitz and Stevie for 6 more years could be Fitzmagical!!!

  5. jacksonjames4 says: Oct 30, 2011 10:58 AM

    to us average folks.. i would beg for his salary of ‘only’ 1.5 million

  6. EJ says: Oct 30, 2011 11:47 AM

    The team won’t come to terms with Stevie before the year is done, he is asking for way too much money. Steve Johnson is a very good receiver, not much in the speed department, but a great route runner with very good hands… thing is, he is not worth what he is asking. I believe i heard he wants top 10 number 1 receiver money. I understand he had a great year last season but wasn’t even on the radar at all before then. If he shows he can match or better what he did last year, then I believe Buffalo will pay him what he wants. But until then… I think nothing will change. Gotta play it safe, besides, the Draft will be full of able WR’s this year. A lot of hidden gems.

  7. j0esixpack says: Oct 30, 2011 12:18 PM

    Johnson may think the Bills will overpay for him like they did with Fitzpatrick.

    They might. It was worth it to overpay Fitzpatrick for the message it sends to other free agents. Having a decent QB long term is something free agents would look for when making a choice if the money is comparable.

    Having a good RB signed would help too – but Johnson might want to keep in mind that other free agents might be willing to play for the Bills now too.

  8. androk23 says: Oct 30, 2011 12:43 PM

    Stevie is my favorite player on the Bills. PLEASE extend him soon, so I can buy his jersey and not worry about it staying on the hanger a year from now.

  9. gadzod says: Oct 30, 2011 1:34 PM

    Why are people saying they overpaid for Fitz? He is a 2nd tier QB, and got paid like one. He makes 200k more than Newton, and 2.75 less than players like Matt Ryan. I don’t understand it. With that said, I’m sure Lindell and Pears will be available come free agency. Steve Johnson won’t! We need to extend him, and then pay Fred Jackson like he deserves!

  10. rarson says: Oct 30, 2011 5:50 PM

    Stevie is worth hanging onto (as is Fitzpatrick), they’ll probably franchise him and work out a deal later.

  11. emoney12 says: Oct 30, 2011 7:42 PM

    Fred Jackson’s situation is not as immediate as people are making it. Jackson is under contract through the 2012 season.

  12. canjura says: Oct 30, 2011 10:14 PM

    Stevie Johnson, who last year was a #2 due to Lee Evans getting the majority of the double teams, has proven himself last year and is proving himself again this year. The guy is a stud, he makes plays week in and week out, and loves the game of football as evident by him missing no games while dealing with a groin injury. If he wants top 10 money, give it to him. I can’t think of 10 better receivers than Stevie Johnson. Fitzy, Megatron, Jennings, Roddy White, Wes Welker, Bolden (MAYBE). PAY THE MAN!

  13. redbullenergydrink says: Oct 31, 2011 12:21 AM

    Stevie should get paid as long as he stops blaming god for his drops.

  14. gordobombay says: Oct 31, 2011 11:43 PM

    @canjura Are you kidding me? Those are the only receivers you believe to be better than SJ? One, Roddy White is underachieving this year so I’d initially take him off of that list. But you really think Stevie is better than Vincent Jackson? DeSean Jackson? Holmes? Wallace? Nicks? Britt (when healthy)? I’m sure theres others – Hell, I’d probably take AJ Green based on the potential he’s shown with Andy Dalton flinging poop at him.

    I agree that signing Stevie is a priority (especially seeing as Freddy’s contract extends through 2012) and don’t get me wrong I’m a huge fan. See how the next 5-6 weeks go and see if he can produce against some of the leagues top backs (Revis/Cromartie twice). But the Bills should be smart with their investments and put the money where the production value comes from (coughFREDcough) and spend some
    money bulking up our pass rush.

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