Bills safety Jairus Byrd has answered a lot of questions about his relationship with the Bills since reporting to camp after signing his franchise tender late in August.
There were more of them on Thursday in the wake of a report in the Buffalo News that Byrd wanted to be traded. Byrd didn’t flatly deny the report, though he wondered what sources were being quoted and said his only focus is on football.
“From what I understand, someone is saying ‘sources.’ I would like to know what sources they’re talking about before you can say sources,” Byrd said, via Joe Buscaglia of WGR550.com. “My focus is just on football now, honestly. For this team, my teammates mean the world to me. I don’t want to be any distraction to them. We have a big game coming up. We need to be 100 percent on New England, and that’s where our focus is at. That’s it. That’s that.”
If Byrd does want to be traded, it’s not going to be easy. Teams will have to have room for his $6.916 million salary this year, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com reports there are 11 teams in that position, without the chance to sign him to a long-term deal until after the season. In that case, Byrd’s best chance to get what he wants is to keep his head down and play as well as possible while not letting what seems to be a strained relationship with the organization get in the way.
“I don’t know. A working relationship? That’s what it is, what you just said. A working relationship, I guess,” Byrd said of his relationship with General Manager Doug Whaley. “I don’t want to get into all that. I mean, I’m an employee of the Buffalo Bills. He’s the general manager. There you have it. We’re here to win games.”
As pressing as any issue for Byrd and the Bills right now is the plantar fasciitis that’s left his ability to play in the opener against the Patriots in doubt. Byrd was limited in practice again on Thursday and any trade talk is an even bigger pipe dream as long as he’s less than 100 percent.