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Bills release Drayton Florence

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The addition of Stephon Gilmore with the 10th overall pick in the draft has pushed another defensive back off the Buffalo roster.

A league source told PFT that the Bills have released cornerback Drayton Florence. Florence started every game over the last two seasons and 45 games in his three years with the Bills. Like most members of the Buffalo secondary, Florence didn’t have a very good season in 2011 but it wasn’t widely assumed that he’d lose his job in the roster cruch created by the drafting of Gilmore and Ron Brooks.

The Bills figure to keep six cornerbacks. Gilmore, Brooks and Aaron Williams are sure things with Terrence McGee likely to stay if he’s healthy enough. Florence’s departure would seem to be good news for Leodis McKelvin’s roster spot and Justin Rogers is also on the roster.

Florence was due to make $4 million this season, a number that likely contributed to the choice to move in a different direction. At 31, his best days are likely behind him but he should get another look this offseason in a league that can’t find enough cornerbacks.

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31 Responses to “Bills release Drayton Florence”
  1. mrizzo44 says: May 4, 2012 9:52 AM

    I always liked Drayton, but the writing was on the wall. Either he, McGee, or McKelvin had to go, but McGee and McKelvin were only making around $1.5 million this year. Drayton is due $4 mil this year and $5 mil next year. Too much money for a 31 year old, backup CB.

    Hope he lands somewhere other than New England.

  2. swpstks says: May 4, 2012 9:53 AM

    I thought it would be Leodis McKelvin instead of Florence

  3. cjepp says: May 4, 2012 9:58 AM

    Shoulda been McGee. Florence isn’t much better, but has more tread on the tires.

  4. grogantomorgan says: May 4, 2012 10:06 AM

    Hope he lands somewhere other than New England.


    Buffalo castoff = CFL back-up

  5. fitzmagic1212 says: May 4, 2012 10:27 AM

    good luck drayton. ill never forget the pick 6 on tom brady this past season.

    and i wouldn’t be shocked to see him down in jacksonville to join poz on that defense

  6. exibitsman says: May 4, 2012 10:28 AM

    the NY JETS will bring him to team headquarters for a tryout. I no he wants to play for REX RYAN’S. DEFENSE

  7. mrizzo44 says: May 4, 2012 10:39 AM

    Buffalo castoff = CFL back-up


    Right, just like Marshawn Lynch, Willis McGahee, Pat Williams, Antoine Winfield, Jabari Greer, Takeo Spikes, London Fletcher, and most recently…Aaron Maybin.

  8. dryzzt23 says: May 4, 2012 10:50 AM

    Drayton was another small college project that never worked out. The Steelers had one of these kind of CBs a few years ago and he didn’t pan out either.

  9. homelanddefense says: May 4, 2012 10:52 AM

    Id take him in NE. Hell, Id take any CB in New England.

  10. bozosforall says: May 4, 2012 10:55 AM

    grogantomorgan says:
    May 4, 2012 10:06 AM
    Hope he lands somewhere other than New England.


    Buffalo castoff = CFL back-up

    CFL back-up = still better than any NE idiot fan could hope to accomplish

    Drayton will find a spot in the NFL this year. He was only “castoff” because the Bills now have cheaper options. You know, kinda like how the Pats kick vets to the curb every year despite those players still having plenty left in the tank.


    Washington castoffs (Haynesworth for one) = NE wastes of money

    is a far more accurate statement

  11. siriusred67 says: May 4, 2012 11:04 AM

    This should come as no surprise to anybody who watched the Bills last year because Florence was just awful. He has clearly lost a step or three, and he was frequently burned outright. Other times, he would blatantly grab the receiver (and get flagged) to stop them from blowing by him. His penchant for the occasional big play is now heavily outweighed by his inability to cover.

    McKelvin is still fast enough to play corner, and his issues might still be correctable. He always seems to get good position, but he doesn’t get his hands up to make a play on the ball.

  12. karl422 says: May 4, 2012 11:20 AM

    Every time I watched the Bills this year was because I had put money on them. Florence gave up a tuchdown every time. He looked bad too. Not even turning around to see the ball. He was TOAST.

  13. polishkingski says: May 4, 2012 11:22 AM

    good luck dray, you were a class act.

  14. wideright91 says: May 4, 2012 11:31 AM

    I will always remember the 15 you got for legally blocking Tom Brady last season on that pick return, although I wish you had made it a little more illegal.

    Good luck in future endeavors.

  15. oldbyrd says: May 4, 2012 11:31 AM

    I wonder for The Eagles would be interested?

  16. mullman7675 says: May 4, 2012 11:39 AM

    patriots ( does not deserve to be capitalized) fans are funny. They have their head buried in chowder, they don’t know what the cluck they are talking about…

  17. trubroncfan07 says: May 4, 2012 11:42 AM

    Instantly would be the number one corner on the Raiders is if they signed him.

  18. ghostofgilchrist says: May 4, 2012 11:43 AM

    A seemingly good guy, and an asset to the community. Best of luck.

  19. mrpkg says: May 4, 2012 12:00 PM

    Depending on his $$$, the Steelers should be interested.

    Supposed to be a good locker room guy, community service volunteer.

  20. ddeck00 says: May 4, 2012 12:06 PM

    dryzzt23 says:
    May 4, 2012 10:50 AM
    Drayton was another small college project that never worked out. The Steelers had one of these kind of CBs a few years ago and he didn’t pan out either.


    Statement is wrong in many ways. First because he was a 6 year veteren who had played for 2 different teams when the bills signed him.

    And then he only started 45 of the 46 games he played in Buffalo.

    Plus, the man has started 96 games in his 9 year career and is almost certain to be signed by someone before the start of training camps. I think his career has “panned out” like any other non-elite, mid level CB in the NFL.

    Not to shabby for a guy from Tuskegee college.

  21. ddeck00 says: May 4, 2012 12:18 PM

    Oh, I also forgot to mention that as a long time Bills I hate to see him go. He never had great speed so he did get beat at times but I think he was Buffalos best CB the last 3 years.

    But as soon as McGee restructured his contract earlier this offseason, it was gonna be him or Mckelvin. Mckelvin was a recent 1st rd pick who is younger, faster, and contributes in the return game but most importantly made less money.

    That said I am excited to see the Williams, Gilmore, Brooks trio over the next few years.

    Go Bills.

  22. jwreck says: May 4, 2012 12:21 PM

    While trashing the patriots is completely undeerstandable, the repeated trashing of clam chowder simply does not. Clam chpwder is awesome. It seems like in the comments section of every AFC East article, the Patriots come up, and in response, some fan of another team attacks chowder. Have you tried chowder? It’s frigging delicious.

    That is all.

  23. bucthat says: May 4, 2012 12:26 PM

    Well after watching plenty of bills games this year they might miss him a little….but they sure wont miss his 2-3 pass interferences a game.

  24. EJ says: May 4, 2012 12:48 PM

    My favorite Drayton play has to be the pick 6 against NE last year.

    My favorite Drayton moment was watching him make Mark Sanchez flinch as he was lined up at receiver. The play didn’t stop after the flinch, after Sanchez started to go out and block Florence, Drayton threw Mark to the ground like a rag doll. It was awesome!!

    Good luck DF!! I wish you the best on your future!! #BillsMafia

  25. clipper325 says: May 4, 2012 12:51 PM

    Geesh… Bills fan’s a little sensitive about the Pats…?

  26. gredington says: May 4, 2012 1:17 PM

    Pats are going down like a 2 bit hooker

  27. gredington says: May 4, 2012 1:19 PM

    Chowder is good … Chadda … as you NE fans say … is not good

  28. mazz87 says: May 4, 2012 1:31 PM

    Tampa Bay will be calling with the last major need on the team. With a older corner in Ronde Barber and the court troubled Aqib Talib awaiting trial there is no for sure answer to fill for the future. This leaves the new signing Eric Wright who is a number 2 corner at best and the rest of the awful corners in Biggers and Myron Lewis. Florence will bring experience and a need to this young Tampa defense.

    Other teams that will be interested: Miami, Vikings, Colts, Jags and Pats

  29. dtjano says: May 4, 2012 2:50 PM

    His flop against the Pats was pretty funny. I think the upcoming season will be the last for McGee and McKelvin on the Bills roster. The most pressing need for the Bills and the secondary right now is re-signing Byrd.

    He seemed like a good guy. Just not a good football player last season.

  30. regisphilbin says: May 4, 2012 3:36 PM

    No way he comes back to Jax!! He flopped here and was cut after a single season along with Jerry Porter. O boy, the good old days of Shack Harris.

  31. xli2006 says: May 4, 2012 7:21 PM

    Indy. They will snag a vet CB at some point this offseason.

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