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Buddy Nix denies Bills have decided against tagging Stevie Johnson

Stevie Johnson AP

On Thursday, we brought you a report that the Bills had decided against using the franchise tag on impending free agent wide receiver Stevie Johnson.

Bills general manager Buddy Nix is singing a different tune. He told Joe Buscaglia of WGR 55o in Buffalo that the team has not made any decision about Johnson’s future and that he would be meeting with Johnson’s representatives on Friday in an effort to sort things out.

“You know everything’s an option,” Nix replied. “I read in the paper or somebody sent it to me the other day that we definitely were not going to tag him. I don’t know who they talked to, I’d like to talk to them maybe see what we’re gonna do with some of those other guys. So I don’t know who the source was but they don’t know, I can promise you that. Again, that’s an option we’ve got until March 5 to decide.”

Nix didn’t deny that the two sides are far apart on discussions about a long-term contract, however. With a deep class of free agent wideouts set to hit the market on March 13th, the $9.4 million franchise tag for Johnson might not make much sense for Buffalo. Of course, the Bills have had a hard time attracting big free agents in the past so that might also play a role in whatever their ultimate decision is when it comes to Johnson’s future with the team.

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18 Responses to “Buddy Nix denies Bills have decided against tagging Stevie Johnson”
  1. joetoronto says: Feb 24, 2012 10:59 AM

    I can’t believe they’re even considering tagging this guy, no way he’s worth that kind of money.

  2. sportsmeccabi says: Feb 24, 2012 11:02 AM

    Can’t let Stevie Johnson know it will be the easy to get out of Buffalo.

  3. mrizzo44 says: Feb 24, 2012 11:15 AM

    I can promise you that if they DON’T keep Johnson in Buffalo, that there is a 0.00% chance they they replace him with anybody as good, or better than him.

  4. EJ says: Feb 24, 2012 11:19 AM

    Buffalo’s side- It would be very foolish to let the only WR in team history with back to back 1,000yd seasons sign with another team, regardless of his td antics. The few million that they are apart is not worth searching for another wideout that has a connection with Fitzpatrick.

    Johnson’s side- He may receive an offer or two from other teams, but nowhere near what Buffalo has offered to pay him, he is a one trick pony(great route runner) and he may have a hard time finding that chemistry with another QB. With a big contract signing with Buffalo for a good four years, he could end his career with the same team that drafted him in round 7. Mark my words, If SJ signs with another team, his name will only be relevant for one more year.

  5. radrntn says: Feb 24, 2012 11:24 AM

    Don’t franchise him, just sign him to a long term deal. Pay the kid.

  6. billsfan66 says: Feb 24, 2012 11:24 AM

    May just be a smoke screen trying to get leverage in negotiations.

    Scare Stevie he may be tagged and sign a contract.

    Get it done OBD!

  7. bbking0420 says: Feb 24, 2012 11:28 AM

    If my Buffalo Bills let Steve Johnson walk away with all that talent and youth it would be ashamed.We already lost Lee Evans,and he was great for our team.I do not get our personnel moves at all!!! Sign and pay the man!!!!! PLEASE

  8. nineroutsider says: Feb 24, 2012 11:37 AM

    All this talk of a deep WR free agent class, but it seems like most of them will get tagged or sign a long term deal with their current team. The class may be deep now, but it will be a lot of 2nd and 3rd tier guys by the FA start date.

  9. tommyrob4780 says: Feb 24, 2012 11:55 AM

    they should give it 2 him he deserves it he is a all a round good guy do it and i am a bills fans

  10. gtthom86 says: Feb 24, 2012 11:59 AM

    No brainer tag IMO. Not only is stevie younger than the others FAs, hes familiar with the offense and has great chemistry with fitzpatrick.

    besides, the bills still need another WR anyway – they can’t afford to let a quality one go.

  11. slobberknockered says: Feb 24, 2012 12:09 PM

    Hmmmmmmm, crazy antics, alligator arms, choking in the clutch, etc… I wonder why Stevie can’t get a contract. Hmmmmmmm, I wonder why?

  12. henryjones20 says: Feb 24, 2012 12:54 PM

    Nice and refreshing 2 see that alot of the smart and positive bills fans came out and posted.just 2or3 negative ones wanting to get rid of our only legit we.go bills!get it done today!!

  13. nbaraie says: Feb 24, 2012 1:09 PM

    One of the few WR’s that has had success vs. Revis. If the Bills let him walk they are stupid.

  14. rabidbillsfan says: Feb 24, 2012 1:30 PM

    You know, I love the “Don’t drop the ball Stevie” comments. However, in the 2 games where he has had “Crucial” drops, they were essentially meaningless. Do the Bills make the playoffs beating the Jets? Probably not. And do I really need to revisit 2010? How about Wes Welker dropping a Superbowl sealing catch? Welker is, in everybody elses eyes, a God-Send, and head and shoulders above the rest! He is a 1-trick Pony, Run after catch is about all he’s good for. He is below-average when jammed at the line, and unless there are 2 other WO’s on the field, he dissapears. Stevie is 7 years younger, has put up monster seasons as the only true threat on a team that has had a QB Carousel, and deserves to be paid. $10 mil a season? No. $8.5 sounds good to me. Heck, get him a 4 yr deal, and pay him $11 for the first 2 and add option bounses to the last 2 so A.) If he sucks, we can cut him, and B.) If he lights it up, there will be less worry on a Hold-out for even more money. Buffalo needs a marketable player, Stevie is that player.

  15. rnt2000 says: Feb 24, 2012 1:39 PM

    @bbking0420 You say we lost Lee Evans and that was bad enough???? The last thing I remember from Lee Evans is a HUGE DROPPED ball in the PLAYOFFS that would have sent the Ravens to the SUPERBOWL. Now correct me if I am wrong but he gets paid HUGE money and look what he did.

    I don’t think that Stevie has earned the #1 receiver money yet but I do think they need to sign him to a multi year contract because he is a good young and upcoming receiver….and tell you the truth I actually like his TD rants he does….best comical thing that has happened in Buffalo in a long time.

    ALWAYS a BILLS FAN through good (early 90′s) and bad since 90′s

  16. tropboi11 says: Feb 24, 2012 2:07 PM

    Im not a Bills fan but a Bucs fan so we are about one in the same, I think they should sign the guy, they wont do any better in FA cause all the other top wide outs are getting tagged, Stevie is young and good in my eyes, give him a 4-yr deal and tell him he has to go by Steve now.

  17. catquick says: Feb 24, 2012 10:49 PM

    Will the Bills fool all the draftniks and take Malcolm Floyd from Notre Dame with the 1 rd. pick? He’ll cost less than Johnson and we’ll have him for sure for 4 yrs, and Imho he’s a better player. After this, the Bills go Defense, defense, defense. FA D pass rusher, etc. It’s a possibility.

  18. rabidbillsfan says: Feb 25, 2012 3:52 PM

    Considering Floyd has an injury history, no. I would like us to drop back and take Whitney Mercilus. Stevie isn’t going anywhere.

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